Stefan Hell pioneered breaking the diffraction resolution barrier in a light microscope using conventional lenses – a crucial achievement for biomedical research. He invented and developed STED (Stimulated Emission Depletion”) microscopy. For his contributions, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2014. Born in Arad, Romania, Stefan Hell studied in Heidelberg and earned his PhD in physics in 1990. He then worked at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), also in Heidelberg, and at the University of Turku, Finland. After attaining his habilitation in 1996 at Heidelberg University, he joined the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen. Since 2002, he has acted Director of this institute. In 2003, he became head of the Optical Nanoscopy Division at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg. In 2016, he was elected member of the acatech, the national academy of science and engineering. Since December 2014, Stefan Hell has been a member of the HITS Scientific Advisory Board.