International Year of Chemistry, 2011

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International Year of Chemistry 2011

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Chemikum Marburg

Activity by Bastian Weinert   |   added on Nov 18, 2010   |   Germany Official_iyc_logo

Sponsor(s): The Philipps-Universität Marburg, The Universitätsstadt Marburg, The German Federal State Hessen, The Hessian department of science and arts, Förderverein Chemikum Marburg e.V.

The concept of the Chemikum Marburg has been to offer an approach to chemistry and sciences by fascinating experimental lectures and tangible experiments done by oneself. Hence, all visitors are invited to make their own attempts regardless of age or education.

Chemikum Marburg – Chemistry for Everyone: Check It Out!

In October 2005, the Chemikum Marburg opened its doors in the department of chemistry at the Philipps-Universität Marburg, Germany. It was Professor Dehnicke’s idea to start this project aiming at imparting the fascination of chemistry to a general public.

Right from the start, the concept of the Chemikum Marburg has been to offer an approach to chemistry by tangible experiments done by oneself. Hence, all visitors are invited to make their own attempts regardless of age or education – however, a helping hand is close by, if wished for.

Additionally, a cooperation with the related disciplines biology and physics has been started to represent natural sciences as a whole.

The programme also includes fascinating experimental lectures from all the different fields of chemistry presented by local and invited speakers. In this way, difficult and dangerous experiments can be demonstrated and explained.

As mentioned above, everybody is invited to make her/his own hands-on experiments and see how creativity together with a little basic knowledge can cause surprise and enthusiasm.

In the open laboratory, a multitude of experiments has been designed and prepared to fit the abilities and interests of all visitors ranging from pre-school-age children to senior citizens, from primary to secondary schoolchildren or children taught in special schools. They all are assisted by future chemistry teachers. A booklet with popular-science information allows everyone to take home a souvenir from an interesting day.

In this way, the Chemikum Marburg tries to bridge the gap between the day-to-day use of products of chemistry and the common fear associated with chemical industry.

Another highlight are the two-day workshops provided by the Jungchemikerforum Marburg (young chemists’ organization of the German Chemical Society), which in the past lead to an intensive investigation of special topics like solar cells for sixth form students.

It is of particular concern of the Chemikum Marburg to provide access to the experiments also to handicapped and blind persons: Therefore, a close collaboration has been established with the renowned “Deutsche Blindenstudienanstalt”, a Marburg-based organization.

Up to now, the project was run twice a year for two weeks. However, due to the continually increasing numbers of visitors and the positive feedback that was received, it was decided to give the Chemikum Marburg a permanent home. The Förderverein Chemikum Marburg e.V., the city council of Marburg, and the Philipps-Universität Marburg took charge of the restoration of the old (former) building of the Faculty of Chemistry for this purpose. After a final two-week session from March 07 till 19, 2011, the laboratories will move to the very central premises in the “Bahnhofstraße” – only 500 metres from the Marburg Central Station – in the middle of the year 2011 to open daily from autumn 2011. Even special labs for visually handicapped people and lowered benches for children will be available there.

The great aim of the Chemikum Marburg and its leader Prof. Dr. Stefanie Dehnen is to create enthusiasm for natural sciences, to analyse its backgrounds and to engage the enquiring mind of the visitor.

Topic: chemistry education, workshops, hands-on activities, demonstrations, seminars Audience: general public


Dileep Sathe | Dec 05, 2010 11:28AM

I would like to discuss, in a lecture, some unique and basic problems in learning circular motion - and other relted topics like learning of Bohr's theory of hydrogen atom. This would be of interest to people from Physics and Chemistry - both. For details, see my "activity" on this site, dated: 19th November 2010.

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Sep 12 - Sep 24, 2011 Chemikum Marburg - autumn session