One Million Euros for Energy-Efficient Radio-Frequency Electronics

The Fritz Hüttinger Foundation is sponsoring a new endowed chair at the Institute for Sustainable Systems Engineering



Rüdiger Quay has accepted the endowed chair which is funded by the couple Gerda and Fritz Ruf. Photo: Sandra Meyndt

Freiburg, Aug 26, 2020

The Fritz Hüttinger Foundation and the University of Freiburg have signed an endowment agreement establishing the Fritz Hüttinger Professorship for Energy-Efficient Radio-Frequency Electronics at the Institute for Sustainable Systems Engineering (INATECH). The Foundation is donating a total of one million Euros over a period of ten years for the endowed chair. The goal of the new professorship is to advance the University of Freiburg’s development of innovative technologies in the field of efficiency of electronics.

The Fritz Hüttinger Foundation previously donated 100,000 euros per year for the endowed Professorship for Microelectronics at the University’s Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) from 2009 to 2019. Brigitte Diefenbacher, the managing director of the Berthold Leibinger Foundation, stressed the importance of the science funding by the couple Mrs. Gerda Ruf and Dr. Fritz Ruf, who founded the Fritz Hüttinger Foundation, a trust that also supports civic engagement in Freiburg.

“We are deeply grateful to the donors Mrs. Gerda Ruf and Dr. Fritz Ruf for the many years of generous support of our research and teaching,” said Rector Prof. Dr. Hans-Jochen Schiewer, adding:  “We regard the Foundation’s decision to remain a close partner by funding another endowed professorship as an extraordinary sign of trust.” The University of Freiburg also granted the Rufs the titles of Honorary Senators in 2018 as a token of gratitude for their special contribution to the continued advancement of the Faculty of Engineering.

The Fritz Hüttinger Professorship will focus on engineering aspects of the energy efficiency of micro- and nano-electronic building blocks and circuits, especially those based on compound semiconductors. “The goal of research and development is to understand and optimize the efficiency and robustness of electrical components and systems in applications in fields such as energy technologies, communications technologies, security technologies, and sensor technologies,” says associate professor Dr. Rüdiger Quay from the Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) at the University of Freiburg and the Fraunhofer Institute of Applied Solid State Physics IAF, who accepted the offer of the professorship. This thematic focus is primarily based on such emerging fields of research as fourth industrial revolution and 5G, the fifth generation technology for cellular networks that will enable a completely new level of communication and connectivity among humans, machines, and production. The scientists researching in the lab of this new professorship will thus be researching and testing sustainable electronic microsystems and intelligent materials for the Internet of Things.

The new professorship will also be integrated into teaching, especially in the bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in Sustainable Systems Engineering (SSE). Undergraduate, graduate, and PhD students at INATECH will also benefit from the endowment of the Fritz Hüttinger Foundation through scholarships and academic awards in the field of sustainable systems engineering, particularly in materials engineering, systems engineering, electronics, energy engineering, and process engineering. In order to get more young people interested in its natural and engineering science programs, the University will also be holding school workshops, hosting events with partner schools, and inviting school students to trial classes.

The Fritz Hüttinger Foundation was established in 2006 by Hüttinger’s daughter Gerda Ruf and her husband Dr. Fritz Ruf. The trust supports not only science and research, in particular innovative technologies in the field of electric energy; it also supports the community and promotes civic engagement.

CV of Rüdiger Quay

Portrait of Gerda and Fritz Ruf in the University’s Online Magazin

Website of the Fritz Hüttinger Foundation


PD Dr. Rüdiger Quay
Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK),
Faculty of Engineering, University of Freiburg,
Fraunhofer Institute of Applied Solid State Physics IAF
Phone: +49 (0)761/5159–843
Email: ruediger.quay(at)

Press photo for download
Photo: Sandra Meyndt


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