Petra Rudolf is currently a Professor of Experimental Solid State Physics in the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. Dr. Rudolf specialised in Solid State Physics during her university studies. As research fellow she moved into the field of Surface Physics. She has been interested in different aspects of surface analysis, investigating electronic structure with the help of direct and inverse photoemission spectroscopy, electron energy loss, X-ray absorption and autoionisation spectroscopies; studying the vibrational properties of adsorbed atoms and molecules by high resolution electron energy loss and infrared spectroscopies, and the surface crystalline structure by low energy electron diffraction and scanning tunnelling microscopy. Very recently she has also focused on time-resolved electron diffraction studies. Dr. Rudolf has extensively used synchrotron radiation techniques. Her main research interests have been catalytic reactions at metal surfaces, adsorption of alkali metals on metallic, semiconducting and semimetallic surfaces, adsorption and self-assembly on surfaces of supramolecular architectures such as catenanes and rotaxanes and the characterisation of clay nanocomposites and of ultrathin films of fullerene-based materials. Over the recent years her research interest has been divided between synthetic molecular motors and switches on surfaces to create new functional surfaces that harness and reveal mechanical motion at the single molecule level and at the macroscopic scale, organic thin films for molecular electronic applications, organic-inorganic hybrid thin films and (pillared) graphene for spintronics, hydrogen storage and catalytic applications. She has received many awards for her work including Presidency of the Belgian Physical Society, the Descartes Prize (for the work on Molecular Motors) and the Fellowship of the American Physical Society (for the work on fullerenes, carbon nanotubes and graphene). She was editor in Chief of the European Physical Journal B currently serves on the editorial board of the New Journal of Physics. Things that she enjoys apart from Physics are reading, traveling, visiting archeological sites, art and music. She also invest considerable time to advance the status of women, not only in science.