Hendrik Hamann  Hendrik Hamann photo       

contact information

Senior Manager, Physical Analytics
Thomas J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY USA


Professional Associations

Professional Associations:  American Physical Society  |  IEEE   |  New York Academy of Science


Dr. Hendrik F. Hamann is currently a Senior Manager and Distinguished Researcher in the Physical Sciences Department at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY. He received his PhD from the University of Göttingen in Germany. During his thesis he developed new spectroscopic techniques to investigate the dynamics and kinetics of transient, short-lived radicals. He was the first one to study the dynamics of radicals under high pressure conditions using saturated laser induced fluorescence spectroscopy.

In 1995 he joined JILA (Joint institute between the University of Colorado and NIST) as a Research Associate in Boulder, Colorado. During his tenure at JILA he developed novel near-field optical microscopes to study single molecules at high spatial resolution. Hamann was the first one to demonstrate fluorescence enhancement effects in the vicinity of an optical antenna (i.e., nanostructure), which is the basis of all of today’s high resolution near-field microscopes. He further was involved in the discovery of a universal power law governing the blinking dynamics of single quantum dots.

 In 1999 he joined IBM Research at the T.J. Watson Research Center, where he demonstrated for the first time magnetic recording via thermal near-field coupling. This technology (commonly referred to as thermally-assisted recording) is the foundation for pushing the storage density of hard disk drives beyond the super paramagnetic limit. Hamann also contributed significantly to the development of the first protrusion control technology (TPC) within IBM, which allows sub Angstroem resolution control of fly heights of recording heads in hard disk drives. TPC is today in every high performance hard disk drive. In 2000 Hamann also demonstrated a new phase-change memory cell, which was important for IBM to launch its work on phase-change memory.

Since 2001 he is leading the Physical Analytics program in IBM Research, currently as a Senior Research Manager. Physical Analytics is a term, which IBM coined to describe the emerging field at the intersection of big IoT (=Internet of Things) data, physical modeling and data analytics, which aims providing the underlying intelligence for future and smarter IoT applications ("cognitive IoT"). Between 2005 and 2009 he worked on energy and thermal management all the way from the device level to large scale computing systems. He invented a new technique to measure power distributions of chips under full operations. This method is today extensively used for IBM’s high performance microprocessor design.

More recently Hamann’s main accomplishments are IBM’s Measurement and Management Technologies (MMT) for improving energy efficiency of data centers. This technology was productized by IBM and has been deployed word-wide more than 1000 times. The total revenue impact of MMT in 2015 was $231M.

Hamann’s current research interest includes sensor networks, sensor-based physical modeling, renewable energy, energy management, precision agriculture, system physics and big data technologies. Foremost he has been leading an effort to develop a platform for big spatio-temporal data and analytics. Since 2016 he is a senior manager in IBM Research leading the world-wide activities in IoT research.

Hamann has authored and co-authored more than 90 peer-reviewed scientific papers and holds over 90 patents and has over 100 pending patent applications. Dr. Hamann is an IBM Master Inventor, a member to the IBM Academy of Technology and has served on governmental committees such as the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Foundation and as an industrial advisor to Universities. He won several awards including the 2016 AIP Prize for Industrial Applications of Physics. He is a member of the American Physical Society (APS), Optical Society of America (OSA), The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the NY Academy of Sciences.

Curriculum vitae