Universiteit Leiden

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In memoriam professor Jo Hermans

On Tuesday evening 22 August, our very dear colleague Jo Hermans passed away. Jo had been ill for some time, but continued to enjoy life in good spirits until the very end. He meant a great deal to Leiden University and will be remembered with fond memories by many.

He obtained his PhD in Leiden in 1970 on research supervised by Prof J. Beenakker and Dr H. Knaap and, after a postdoctoral position at MIT in Boston, he returned to Leiden as a member of the scientific staff. From 1992 to 2000, he was also professor by special appointment at Eindhoven University of Technology. He was a passionate scientist with broad interests. In his research, his main interests were the transport properties of gases, collisions of gases with surfaces, spin transitions and laser-induced kinetic phenomena in molecular gases. He held several administrative positions, including that of vice-dean of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. From 2009 to 2017, he was editor-in-chief of Europhysics News. Jo Hermans was much loved by his students: he was a gifted and inspiring teacher. After his retirement in 2002, he published two successful popular science books that have appeared in many languages.

Jo Hermans was a very amiable person who inspired many around him. We will miss him dearly. Our thoughts are with his wife, children and grandchildren. We wish them much strength in coping with this great loss.

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