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Dissertation Award of the University of Potsdam for Theresa Hennig

Theresa Hennig was awarded the “University Society Prize for the Outstanding PhD 2022” at the central graduation ceremony of the University of Potsdam.

At the University of Potsdam's central graduation ceremony on 29 June 2023, geoecologist Theresa Hennig was awarded the “University Society Prize for the Outstanding PhD 2022”. The second prize winner was historian Friederike Hartung. The award comes with prize money of 1250 euros.

Theresa Hennig's dissertation is entitled “Uranium migration in the Opalinus Clay quantified on the host rock scale with reactive transport simulations”. In her work, she investigated the retention capacity of Opalinus Clay for the geochemically very complex radionuclide uranium. Opalinus Clay is a potential host rock for the disposal of radioactive waste. The findings provide guidance for systems with similar geochemistry.

The laudation of the Festschrift of the University of Potsdam states:

“She thus contributes significantly to the search for a site for the final disposal of highly radioactive waste in the Federal Republic of Germany. This is one of society's pressing questions and essentially a geoscientific task to find an answer to it. Without such a detailed and precise description of the overall geological situation as is done here, with a predictive capability for a million years, the search will not be successful.”

Theresa Hennig did her PhD in Section 3.4 “Fluid Systems Modelling”. She was supervised by Michael Kühn, head of the section and professor of hydrogeology at the University of Potsdam, and defended her dissertation with “Summa cum laude”.

In November 2022, Theresa Hennig had already been awarded the Friedrich-Robert-Helmert Prize for outstanding dissertations by the Association of Friends and Supporters of the GFZ, or GFZ Friends for short.

Further information on Theresa Hennig's awarded research can be found here:


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