It is with deep sadness that we announce that Professor Dr. rer. nat. Dr. hc. mult. died on February 4, 2024. In his career spanning more than 60 years, Professor Petzow has shaped materials science in German-speaking countries like no other. He was 97 years old.
For Professor Petzow, the understanding of materials - their production, their properties and their application - on the basis of natural science was of central importance. He has made a leading contribution to the further development of “materials science” into “materials science”. He wrote fundamental works in many subject areas and often set new topics that then became of great importance for many research groups. Examples include thermodynamics, metallography (later materialography), powder metallurgy and technical ceramics. Professor Petzow triggered a research boom in each of these subject areas. In Germany, Professor Petzow was also known as “the ceramics pope”.
Professor Petzow was also an excellent teacher and networker. There were often dozens of visiting scientists at his “Powder Metallurgical Laboratory” in Stuttgart. He sometimes proudly mentioned that more than a hundred of his students and colleagues had become university professors. This also shows its enormous influence on our research landscape.
Professor Petzow also had a strong connection to Austria. Many of his students, employees and guests were Austrian. He was particularly proud of the honorary doctorate from the Montanuniversität Leoben. It was his third honorary doctorate and since then he has been able to add to his name Dr. hc. mult..
We would like to thank Professor Petzow for his scientific leadership and, above all, for the support that many of us received from him.
o.Univ.Prof. Dr. Robert Danzer
ao.Univ.Prof. Dr. Klaus Reichmann