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The chemist Dr. Jonas Warneke from Leipzig University (PI in the Research Training Group 2721: Hydrogen Isotopes, ¹²³H) receives the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz-Preis 2022. The prize, which is awarded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG) and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung, BMBF), is considered the most important distinction for personalities in the early stages of their scientific career.

Young scientist Dr. Jonas Warneke who deposits molecular fragments from mass spectrometers on surfaces is among the four female and six male junior scientists who are awarded the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz-Preis 2022 for their outstanding scientific work.

In their statement explaining the award to Jonas Warneke, DFG writes that he “has rapidly succeeded in realising his vision of a new interdisciplinary research field as a result of his great determination and extraordinary creativity: the material synthesis he has developed using molecular fragment ions – charged molecular fragments generated in a mass spectrometer – has the potential to bridge the wide gap between gas phase ion chemistry and synthetic chemistry. In particular, this revolutionises the way in which materials with customised properties can be created. During his time as a postdoctoral researcher in the US, Warneke significantly developed the ion soft landing method, which laid the foundations for his discoveries regarding self-organising layers. At the same time, Warneke developed fundamental concepts on the chemistry of the so-called super-electrophilic anions.”

Since 2020, Dr. Jonas Warneke leads his junior research group at the Wilhelm Ostwald Institute for Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, endowed with a “Freigeist” Fellowship by the Volkswagen Foundation (VolkswagenStiftung). “I am very pleased that our research is being recognised as an important contribution to science by this prize,” says Warneke, „We have laid the foundations for a new field of research. This award is a great motivation to develop the synthesis of new molecules and materials with fragment ions into a broadly applicable method in the coming years.”

The Heinz Maier-Leibnitz-Preis is endowed with 20.000 Euro per awardee. The ceremony will take place in Berlin on 3 May and will be live streamed.