Peter Hamm studied physics at the Technical University of Munich and carried out his Ph.D. studies under Wolfgang Zinth at the Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich between 1991 and 1995. He continued with a postdoc at University of Pennsylvania in the group of Robin Hochstrasser. In 1999, he was appointed as an independent group leader at the Max Born Institute, Berlin, and in 2001 as professor at University of Zürich, where he stayed ever since. Hamm is a Fellow of OSA and recipient of the 2018 Ellis R. Lippincott Award “for his seminal contributions to developing multidimensional infrared, Raman and Terahertz spectroscopy and his pioneering studies of protein and hydrogen bonding dynamics in molecular liquids.”
Hamm’s research is focused on establishing novel spectroscopic methods in the infrared and THz spectral range which resolve transient structures of molecular systems and the energy flow through them on very fast timescales. A large variety of questions is addressed, ranging from complex problems such as protein folding and allosteric communication in proteins, over photocatalytic water splitting, to elementary structural processes in liquids like water.