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Rolf-Dieter Heuer to be New CERN Director General

German Research Director at DESY will follow Robert Aymar in 2009

(PresseBox) (Hamburg, ) The CERN Council today appointed Professor Rolf-Dieter Heuer (59) to be next Director General of the European Organization for Nuclear Research. He will assume office on 1 January 2009. Rolf-Dieter Heuer is currently Research Director for particle and astroparticle physics at the German research centre DESY.

Rolf-Dieter Heuer has great expectations for his new task: "The Large Hadron Collider LHC—the largest particle accelerator in the world—will start running at CERN in 2008. It will open up a completely new era in particle physics. I am looking forward to seeing great discoveries in the exciting years ahead." DESY is part of a Germany-wide particle physics collaboration participating in the experiments at the LHC. "DESY plays an important role both in Germany and worldwide, and will continue to do so in the future," Heuer said. "With the participation in the LHC, core contributions to the planned International Linear Collider ILC and the Helmholtz-Alliance "Physics at the Terascale", DESY is continuing to strengthen its central role in particle physics. I am looking forward to a new phase of good collaboration between CERN and DESY."

"I am extremely pleased that Rolf Heuer has been appointed as next CERN Director General," said Professor Albrecht Wagner, Chairman of the DESY Directorate. "This is a great distinction for him and a clear recognition of his many achievements, above all of his role as Research Director at DESY. Rolf’s nomination has two sides: on the one hand it will strengthen particle physics worldwide, on the other it presents DESY with a great challenge to find a successor who can fill Rolf’s shoes. However, I am sure that the cooperation between DESY and CERN will definitely benefit from Rolf Heuer’s appointment."

Rolf-Dieter Heuer obtained his PhD at the University of Heidelberg in 1977. After moving to CERN to join the OPAL experiment in 1984 he became OPAL spokesman in 1994. Four years later, in 1998, he assumed a professorship at the University of Hamburg and worked at DESY on preparations for the electron-positron linear collider ILC (International Linear Collider). In 2004 Rolf-Dieter Heuer became DESY Research Director for particle and astroparticle physics. In this office, he shaped and strengthened DESY’s role in the international particle physics community, paving the way for the lab’s participation in the LHC, initiating the Helmholtz-Alliance "Physics at the Terascale" and continuing the strong participation in research and development for the ILC.

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