Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Dr. h. c. Reinhard Zellner

University of Duisburg-Essen
Faculty of Chemistry


Universitaetsstraße 5
D-45141 Essen

Phone: +49 201 183 3073
Fax: +49 201 183 4307

1. Scientific Vita

1968 Diplom (Physics, Chemistry), University of Göttingen
1971 PhD in Physical Chemistry, University of Göttingen
1972 - 1973 Postdoc, Department of Physical Chemistry, University of Cambridge, UK
1973 - 1979 Senior Research Assistent, University of Göttingen
1979 - 1980 Visiting Associate Professor, University of Texas, Austin, USA
1980 Habilitation (Physical Chemistry), University of Göttingen
1983 - 1988 Professor of Physical Chemistry, University of Göttingen
1988 - 1991 Professor of Physical Chemistry, University of Hannover
1991 - 2010 Full Professor of Physical Chemistry and Director, University of Duisburg-Essen
1994 - 1998 Chairman of the Faculty of Chemistry, University of Duisburg-Essen
2004 - 2008 Member of the Senate, University of Duisburg-Essen
2010 - 2018 Senior Full Professor of Physical Chemistry, University of Duisburg-Essen
2012 - 2013 President of the UAR contact office North America, New York
2014 - 2018 Ombudsman “Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice”, University of Duisburg-Essen

2. Awards

1981 Heisenberg Scholarship of Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Society)
2007 Dr. honoris causa of the Physics Department of the University of Athens/GR
2012 Literature award of Fonds der Chemischen Industrie for the book „Chemie über den Wolken“
2014 DECHEMA medal for outstanding achievements in the protection of climate and atmospheric compostion
2019 CARL-DUISBURG-Plaque of the German Chemical Society (Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker, GDCh) for distinguished service to the GDCh
2021 Honorary Membership of DECHEMA for outstanding achievements in advancing air quality and climate change needs as well as sustainable mobility in the society

3. Professional Activities

  • Expert Member of the Enquete-Commission „Vorsorge zum Schutz der Erdatmosphäre“ (Protection of the Earth Atmosphere) of the German Parliament (1987 - 1990)
  • Coordinator of the Research Programme on Stratospheric Ozone of the German Ministry of Science and Technology (BMBF) (1988 - 1999)
  • Member of the EU Stratospheric Science Panel (1989 - 2002)
  • Expert Member of the Enquete-Commission „Schutz des Menschen und der Umwelt“ (Protection of men and environment) of the German Parliament (1992 - 1994)
  • Member of the Board of the German Bunsen-Society (1992 - 1996)
  • Chairman of the DECHEMA and GDCh working party „Fluxes of chemical substances from production into consumer goods“ (1992 - 2004)
  • Member of the Senate Commission on atmospheric sciences of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Society) (1994 - 1996)
  • Managing Board Member of DECHEMA, Frankfurt (1994 - 2008)
  • Chairman of the DECHEMA, GDCh and DBG working party „Chemisty of the atmosphere“ (1996 - 2005)
  • Member of the Jury of the German Environmental Prize (1998 - 2001)
  • Elected Referee of atmospheric and oceanic sciences of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Society) (2002 - 2005)
  • Chairman of the ProcessNet, GDCh, DBG and KRdL working party „Feinstäube” (2000 - 2018)
  • Chairman of the ProcessNet, GDCh and DBG working party „Chemie, Luftqualität und Klima“ (2006 - 2018)
  • Chairman of the Expert Committee „Globale Umweltaspekte“ (Global environmental issues) of the German Ministry of Science (2000 - 2003)
  • Vice Chairman of the „Beratergremium für Umweltrelevante Altstoffe“ (BUA)  of the GDCh (German Chemical Society) (2001 - 2007)
  • Initiator and Coordinator, DFG Priority Programme SPP1313 „Biological Responses to Nanoscale Particles” of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

4. Research Activities and other Fields of Interests

  • Atmospheric chemistry: development and application of laser based laboratory investigations of fast atmospheric chemical reactions
  • Photochemistry and dynamics of atmospheric constituents
  • Heterogeneous chemistry and microphysics of atmospheric aerosols: optical levitation of single microdroplets, surface aerosol microscopy, surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS)
  • Chemistry of air quality and air pollution
  • Climatic change - physical mechanisms and implications
  • Interactions of nanoparticles with phase boundaries and biomolecules
  • CO2 reduction needs and sustainable mobility