Chris Eberl completed his studies in materials science at the University of Stuttgart in 2001. At the Max Planck Institute for Metal Research he worked together with industrial partners concerning the understanding of fatigue in thin films and received his doctorate in 2004 for the topic "Fatigue of Al thin films at ultra-high frequencies" at the University of Stuttgart. At Johns-Hopkins University, he studied deformation mechanisms in nanocrystalline metals, the mechanical characterization of high-temperature protective coatings and experimental mechanics. Since 2007, Chris Eberl has been an invited visiting scientist at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, USA. From 2007 to 2012 he led the independent junior research group "Microreliability" at the IAM-WBM at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. From 2012 to 2018 he headed the group "Meso- and Micromechanics" at the Fraunhofer Institute for Mechanics of Materials IWM. In 2014, he accepted a position as head of the Chair of Micromechanics and Mechanics of Materials at the University of Freiburg and is also deputy institute director at the Fraunhofer IWM. Since 2018, Chris Eberl has been a member of the founding board and head of the "Longevity" pillar of the "livMatS" cluster of excellence - living Materials Systems - at the University of Freiburg. He was also elected scientific coordinator of the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence Programmable Materials in 2018. Another key topic is the digitalization of materials research, which he pursues as spokesperson for the NFDI-MatWerk and in the steering committee of the MaterialDigital platform, as well as in various other projects.
Together with his team, he is researching on the design and the experimental characterization of deformation and degradation mechanisms in materials. The focus is on nano and microstructural materials and components as well as the complex mechanical properties of biomaterials. In order to improve the physical understanding of scaling and size effects of the active mechanisms in these materials, his group has developed new measurement methods for mechanical characterization and reliability evaluation. The aim is to make modern high-tech materials usable in a sustainable and reliable way.
Chris Eberl received an award from the University of Stuttgart for his doctorate in 2004 and the Max Planck Society awarded him the Otto Hahn Medal in 2006. He has received a number of individual grants from various institutions. In 2006, the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research in Stuttgart nominated him for a postdoctoral fellowship abroad, and from 2007 to 2012 he was funded by the DFG as an "independent junior research group leader". He was invited to Singapore by the National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2009, to Baltimore by Johns Hopkins University in 2010 and to Rome by the University Roma Tre in 2011. The Fraunhofer Gesellschaft has been funding his research through the Attract program since 2012.
In 2017, Chris Eberl was admitted to the vintage class of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the "Executive Management Development Program" at Fraunhofer for scientific executives from upper institute management. This was successfully completed in 2022.
In addition to his academic vocation, Chris Eberl has performed many tasks regarding scientific management. The German Association for Materials Research and Testing (DVM) has elected Chris Eberl as a board member, effective 2024.