Hendrik Hamann  Hendrik Hamann photo         

contact information

Academy of Technology LogoChief Scientist for Geoinformatics and IBM PAIRS Geoscope
IBM 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 Distinguished Researcher and the IBM Chief Scientist for Geoinformatics 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 one of the first to study the dynamics of radicals under extreme high-pressure conditions using saturated laser induced fluorescence spectroscopy.

              In 1995 Hendrik 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. He contributed to the first demonstration of 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 also made contributions to 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 high density magnetic data recording via thermal near-field coupling. This technology (commonly referred to as thermally assisted recording (=TAR) or heat assisted magnetic recording (= HAMR) is the foundation for being able to push storage densities of magnetic hard disk drives. Hendrik also contributed to the development of the first protrusion control technology (TPC) in 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 Hendrik demonstrated a new phase-change memory cell technology, which was very important for IBM to launch its phase-change memory program.

              Since 2001 he is leading the Physical Analytics program in IBM Research, first as a Manager and then as 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 technologies from the device level and all the way 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.

              One of Hendrik’s main accomplishments for IBM are the invention and development IBM’s Measurement and Management Technologies (MMT) for improving energy efficiency of data centers and buildings. These technologies were productized by IBM in 2005 and have been deployed word-wide more than 1000 times and contributed significantly to IBM’s data center businesses.

              Hendrik’s current research interests include big data technologies, analytics with artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and physical modeling, sensor networks and Internet of Things (IoT), geoinformatics and remote sensing, system physics with applications to renewable energy forecasting, energy management, precision agriculture etc.

As one of most recent accomplishments, Hendrik has been leading the successful development and commercialization of a platform for big geospatial-temporal data and analytics (IBM PAIRS Geoscope). While Hendrik has been working at IBM Research, he drove the world-wide strategy of all IoT related Research. Now he is leading IBM PAIRS from the business unit as the IBM Chief Scientist for Geoinformatics and Solutions. 

Hendrik has authored and co-authored more than 120 peer-reviewed scientific papers and holds over 140 patents and has over 100 pending patent applications. Hendrik 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 fellow of the American Physical Society (APS), a senior member of The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and a member of the Optical Society of America (OSA), and the NY Academy of Sciences.

Curriculum vitae