In Memoriam: Ulrich Baur
Ulrich Baur, a physics professor at the University at Buffalo who often collaborated with the Fermilab theory group and the Tevatron collider experiments, died Nov. 25. He was 53.
Baur, who held a postdoctoral appointment at Fermilab during the early years of his career, is best known for his work on electroweak physics and processes involving Higgs boson and top quark production. He produced Monte Carlo simulation programs that are widely used for W and Z production.
"Uli's energy and enthusiasm for physics were infectious. We could always count on him to work out the nitty-gritty details of the theory that were essential to get the physics done," said Ashutosh Kotwal, a Fermilab user and professor from Duke University who worked closely with Baur for the past 15 years.
But Baur's contributions to the field went far beyond calculations and codes. He also worked tirelessly to encourage the pursuit of high-energy physics both at the University at Buffalo and among young researchers.
"He was a mentor to all of us in the high-energy physics and cosmology group at the university. Without his tireless efforts and inspiration this group would simply not exist," said Doreen Wackeroth, University at Buffalo professor and Baur's colleague. "I will miss his great sense of humor, his enthusiasm for physics and his guidance."
Chris Quigg, a Fermilab theorist, remembers Baur as a good-natured person who “always had a smile on his face.” Baur was an example of someone who really wanted to give to others, Quigg said.
Baur, a member of the CMS collaboration, was a driving force behind the LHC theory initiative, an NSF-funded, nationally competitive fellowship program for graduate students and postdocs that seeks to increase LHC-related theory efforts in the U.S.
"The program is now thriving and simply would not have happened without Uli's dedication and generosity with his time," said Lynne Orr from the University of Rochester Department of Physics and Astronomy. "His passing leaves a huge void. He was such a great friend and collaborator for so many years."
Baur obtained his Ph.D. in 1985 from the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany, and was a Max-Kade Fellow at Fermilab. Baur was a University at Buffalo faculty member since 1994 and became a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2008.
A funeral service will be held Dec. 17 in Munich. A symposium to honor Baur's contributions to high-energy physics is planned for spring 2011. Colleagues set up a memorial website to honor Baur.
Read Baur's obituary from University at Buffalo.