Freya Blekman joins DESY particle physics division

Renowned particle physicist will be member of the DESY-CMS group

Freya Blekman in front of the huge CMS detector. Photo: private

On 1st October, particle physicist Freya Blekman will start her new position as Leading Scientist at DESY. She is an internationally renowned scientist in the field of experimental particle physics and will join the CMS group at DESY. Born in the Netherlands, she comes from the Free University of Brussels and follows a joint appointment with the University of Hamburg within the Helmholtz Distinguished Professorship Programme. With this programme, the Helmholtz Association promotes joint appointments of outstanding female scientists from abroad and supports the networking of Helmholtz research centres with universities.

Freya Blekman completed her doctorate at the Dutch particle physics research centre NIKHEF at the D0 experiment at Fermilab in the USA. She has been involved in the CMS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider LHC at CERN for many years and is a well-respected scientist in the CMS collaboration there, having held several leading positions. With her research around the search for new effects beyond the Standard Model of particle physics, she aims to reveal some of the deepest mysteries of our world. Her search, for example for components of Dark Matter, is not limited to research at large accelerators such as the LHC and a possible Future Circular Collider, but she is also looking to connect with the axion research programme and astroparticle physics at DESY.

In addition to her research, Freya Blekman enthusiastically pursues innovative teaching concepts and is also known for communicating her research via social media. On Twitter, she is among the top ten most active female physicists in the world, and in 2016 she received the Outreach Annual Award from the Belgian Academy of Sciences. She is currently the first CMS physics communication officer and is responsible for the communication and outreach of more than 130 scientific papers per year from the more than 3000 international scientists of the CMS collaboration.