Prof. Stöhr’s research has focused on the development of novel investigative techniques based on soft x-ray synchrotron radiation for exploring the structure, electronic and magnetic properties of surfaces and thin films. He played a major role in developing the surface extended x-ray absorption fine structure (SEXAFS) technique as a tool for exploring surface structures, especially atoms bonded to surfaces. He also developed the near edge x-ray absorption fine structure (NEXAFS) technique for the study of simple and complex molecules bonded to surfaces and for the study of thin polymer films. The technique is described in his book “NEXAFS Spectroscopy” (Springer, 1992). NEXAFS is widely used today, often in combination with x-ray microscopes, for the study of organic systems like polymers and biological cells.
Over the last 15 years he has concentrated on the use of polarized soft x-rays to study magnetic materials and phenomena, especially thin films, interfaces and nanoscale structures. He has pioneered x-ray magnetic spectro-microscopy which allows the direct observation of nanoscale antiferromagnetic and ferromagnetic domain structures with elemental and chemical state specificity. Motivated by the technological drive of “smaller and faster”, he has also pioneered time-resolved x-ray microscopy techniques with picosecond time resolution. These studies and more generally the whole field of magnetism form the topic of his second book, “Magnetism – From Fundamentals to Nanoscale Dynamics” (Springer, 2006), which he co-authored with Hans Christoph Siegmann. Besides his two books, Dr. Stöhr is the author of more than 250 scientific publications and several patents. He has served on many national and international advisory committees, most notably, the Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee (BESAC) of the U.S. Department of Energy.