Florian Goebel


The MAGIC telescopes are both dedicated to the memory of our colleague Florian Goebel. Even at his young age Florian was a main actor in the MAGIC collaboration and showed huge promise in the field of very high energy gamma astrophysics. Florian held a tenure-track position at the Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPI) in Munich. He was initially only in charge of building and commissioning the readout system of the first MAGIC telescope (MAGIC-I), but he quickly went beyond this piece of hardware and got acquainted with every single detail of the telescope. His initiative and quick learning became instrumental in commissioning the whole telescope and making MAGIC into a working telescope. That made him into the obvious candidate to manage the construction of the second MAGIC telescope (MAGIC-II), the twin of MAGIC-I that allowed to significantly improve the performance of the instrument by observing gamma rays in stereo. Florian was a warm and motivating scientist who easily assembled successful teams around him. His curiosity was immense. He was indefatigable in finding solutions to technical problems and answers to scientific questions. For years he was the irreplaceable force driving the construction of the second telescope as well as motivating and advising students and post docs of the group. At the same time he surprisingly always found time to address the day-to-day troubles for everyone surrounding him: in the institute, in the collaboration, his friends and his family.
An unfortunate accident took his life while he was working on MAGIC-II, just a few days before its planned inauguration in 2008. Every 10th of September we gather at the Roque de Los Muchachos Observatory in La Palma to remember him together with his close relatives. Florian has become an inspiration for every new generation of physicists in the MAGIC collaboration.