Sunshine at the Open House

Mayor Nino Haase visits Max Planck Institutes

Last Sunday (July 9), the two Max Planck Institutes for Polymer Research and Chemistry in Mainz invited visitors to an "Open House". In summery temperatures, more than 1000 visitors* informed themselves about various research topics, listened to scientific lectures or visited the Polymer Path. The mayor of Mainz also took the opportunity to visit the two Max Planck Institutes.

On July 9, the two Max Planck Institutes in Mainz held a joint "Open House" and invited the public interested in research to enjoy numerous attractions.

At the MPI for Polymer Research, a diverse program was offered, ranging from lectures on the "Use of Polymers in Medicine" to "Saving Vines from Fungal Attack" and "Microplastics". During guided tours, visitors gained exciting insights into the institute's research laboratories. "How are the smallest molecules studied and their components analysed?" was just one of the numerous questions that were vividly explained at the large-scale scientific equipment.

Nino Haase, Mayor of the City of Mainz, took the opportunity to visit the open day together with his wife and have a look at the current research activities. During the tour of the laboratories, the diverse booths as well as the plastic educational path around the institute, he was very impressed: "The Open House is a nice opportunity to visit our Max Planck Institutes and learn more about current research."

Various booths of the institute's individual scientific working groups were set up around the institute, where the scientists* themselves presented their research. Culinary delights were on offer in the inner courtyard, where Kurt Kremer's and Mischa Bonn's departments offered cotton candy made from different types of sugar or 3D printed chocolate.

Behind the institute, Paul Blom's department presented how organic electronics could change our lives in the future. For children, plastic cups were turned back into flat, Frisbee-like discs in an oven. Right next door, Tanja Weil's department showed how hydrogels could revolutionize medicine - for example, in the regeneration of severed nerve tracts.

At the department of Katharina Landfester, visitors could try out so-called "non-Newtonian fluids" with acoustic bass tones: A water-strength mixture, excited by a bass box, changed its mechanical properties.

In keeping with the spirit of this very sunny day, Hans-Jürgen Butt's department demonstrated at their pavilion how special coatings can be used for self-cleaning solar cells.

The pavilions of the individual working groups were supplemented by various guided tours, e.g. to beehives on which research is being carried out, or through the institute itself. The visitors were also able to enjoy more pleasant temperatures during the guided tour through the basement of the institute, where the building services department provided insights into the technical systems such as heating and air conditioning of the institute.

More than 1000 visitors confirmed that this "Open Day" was a great success and that the numerous guests were enthusiastic about Mainz's cutting-edge research despite the high temperatures.


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