Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Heinrich J. Völk
Research Interests as an Emeritus
My plasma astrophysics interests concern the theory of acceleration and transport of energetic particles (sometimes loosely called Cosmic Rays) and the resulting dynamical and radiative effects. This implies kinetic theory of nonthermal systems, nonlinearly coupled with the dynamics of the thermal plasma and the magnetic field. The astrophysical phenomena range from particle production and the dynamical structures in Supernova Remnants to nonthermally driven winds from galaxies. This includes the correlated thermal phenomena in all wavelength ranges.
My other area of research is in Very High Energy (VHE) gamma-ray astronomy in the context of the H.E.S.S. experiment. This concerns specifically the gamma-ray detection, the theoretical prediction and the interpretation of sources like Supernova Remnants and the diffuse Galactic emission, as well as Starburst Galaxies and Clusters of Galaxies. In a wider sense this leads to the investigation of the multi-wavelength aspects of these objects, with emphasis on their nonthermal characteristics.