Meet Thomas Vogt

Physicist Thomas Vogt enjoys playing golf, but it’s hard to believe he has time for it.
Since coming to Brookhaven Lab, Vogt has continually taken on new leadership roles
and research projects in his field — the study of inorganic materials.

Thomas Vogt

When he arrived at the Lab in 1992, Vogt developed and operated a neutron powder
diffractometer — a device that measures how neutrons interact with material powder
samples — at the High Flux Beam Reactor, Brookhaven’s former neutron facility. Later, he began studying powder samples using a different type of probe: beams of highly focused x-rays. In 2000, he became the powder diffraction group leader in the Physics Department, and assumed responsibility for an NSLS x-ray workstation, or “beam line.”

More recently, Vogt established the Physics Department’s Materials Synthesis & Characterization group. He has also been involved in the scientific planning of Brookhaven’s upcoming nanoscience facility, the Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN), which will become operational in 2007.

The materials he studies include hydrogen storage materials, which may find use in
environmentally smart, renewable hydrogen fuel cells and batteries, as well as metal
compounds. Using x-ray, neutron, and high-pressure techniques, he investigates the atomic structure of these materials, determining how the structures relate to the materials’ properties.

Vogt also investigates metal oxide materials — metal compounds that contain oxygen
— because they tend to have interesting or unusual electronic behaviors.

“These studies are fascinating because they help identify materials that may be
good candidates for many practical applications, such as reusable batteries
or electronic devices,” Vogt says.

Vogt received his Ph.D. from the Eberhard-Karls Universität in Germany, in 1987.