Frederick Koch †

Prof. Dr. rer. nat.

TUM Department of Physics
Former Chair of Experimental Physics

Born June 1, 1937

Died July 29, 2012


In obtaining his doctorate at the University of California at Berkeley, Frederick Koch lay the foundations for his innovative and successful research on electrical transport along metallic surfaces. His discovery of the electrons bound to the magnetic field as the surface condition, and its importance for the investigation of local characteristics of Fermi surfaces secured him early professional recognition. He was able to provide evidence of such surface conditions for quasiparticles in a superconductive state within London penetration depth. At the University of Maryland, he directed his own work group and was awarded a full professorship at a relatively young age. Professional contacts to the IBM laboratories and the Siemens research centre piqued his interest for semi-conductor physics and the investigation of structures relevant to components for semi-conductor electronics. Frederick Koch is a fixture of a flourishing period of fundamental and applied semiconductor research within the physics department of the Technische Universität München. Together with a group of motivated and talented co-workers – one of whom was the later Nobel Prize winner Klaus von Klitzing – he produced a number of highly original academic works. Their early publications on spectroscopic analysis of the transport as well as the electronic states in two-dimensional electron gas on the SI/SiO2 bordering surfaces of MOS structures brought the group surrounding Frederick Koch international fame. In 1988, his efforts in semiconductor research in Munich were crowned with opening of the Walter Schottky Institute in Garching.


Short biography

1954 – 1958 Studies in Physics and Mathematics, University of New York, USA
1962 Doctorate, University of California at Berkeley, USA
1962 – 1963 Research Assistant Professor, University of California, USA
1963 – 1969 Assistant Professor, University of Maryland, USA
1969 – 1971 Associate Professor, University of Maryland, USA
1971 – 1972 Full Professor, University of Maryland, USA
1972 – 2005 Chair of Experimental Physics, Technische Universität München



Member of the German Research Foundation’s Committee on Scientific Instrumentation (1981-1987)

Member of the American Physical Society (since 1988)

Member of the Senate and the Joint Committee of the German Research Foundation in Solid-State Physics (1989-1995)

Member of the Blue List Commission of the German Council of Science and Humanities Chairperson of the Selection Committee of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation for the Hertie-Stipendium (Hertie Bursary) (1974-2005)

Member of the German Research Foundation’s Joint Committee (1989-2005)

Member of the German Research Foundation’s Senate (1989-2005)

Research stays

Woodrow Wilson Fellow, University of California at Berkeley, USA (1959)

National Science Foundation Fellowship, USA (1960-1963)

Visiting researcher as a Fellow, Cambridge University, UK (1970)

Visiting researcher as a Research Fellow, Technical University of Denmark (DTU) (1970)

Visiting researcher, National Academy of Science, Washington, DC, USA (exchange scholar); and the USSR Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia (1969-1970)

Visiting researcher as temporary director of the High Field Magnetic Laboratory of the Max Planck Society and the Centre nationale de la recherche scientifique at the Institut Laue-Langevin, Grenoble, Switzerland (1975-1976)



  • Young Scientist Award, Maryland Academy of Science, USA (1971)