Max Planck Institute for Chemistry

Max­Planck­Research Magazine

Issue 2018

MaxPlanckResearch 3/2018

A fateful year for a physicist
For Lise Meitner, 1938 is something like a turning point in her life. She flees the Nazis and goes to Sweden, where she tries to establish herself as a scientist and finds the solution to a problem that Otto Hahn told her about in a letter. As a result, the former researcher at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Chemistry becomes one of the co-discoverers of nuclear fission.
Issue 2016

MaxPlanckResearch 4/2016

Hot Air in the Orient

The Middle East and North Africa are currently being rocked by armed conflicts and political crises. But even if these were to be resolved, many people there will likely be forced to leave their homes in the coming decades. Jos Lelieveld, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, and his colleagues are predicting that the region will see dramatic climate change and an increase in air pollution, including airborne desert dust.

Issue 2013

MaxPlanckResearch 3/2013

Tracing the Noxious Five
In many regions of the world, air pollution is set to worsen in the decades to come. Jos Lelieveld and his colleagues at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz forecast where this will happen. Their studies of atmospheric chemistry also uncover the unexpected effects of some substances.

MaxPlanckResearch 2/2013

Greenhouse Gas from the Garden
It is commonly thought that methane forms either chemically, at high pressure or temperature, or as a product of microbial activity. But there are also other ways. Junior scientists working with Frank Keppler from the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz discovered unexpected sources of methane: plants, fungi, soil – and even meteorites.
Issue 2012

MaxPlanckResearch 4/2012

A Place That Radiates Great Science
The Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Chemistry opened its doors in Berlin-Dahlem 100 years ago. Just three years later, it produced its first Nobel laureate: Richard Willstätter had worked out the structure of chlorophyll. However, the research facility, later reborn as the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, became world-famous through the discovery of nuclear fission.

MaxPlanckResearch 4/2012

Elemental Metamorphosis
The inside of planets, stellar shells and numerous other uncomfortable spots in space have one thing in common: matter there is under extreme pressure of several million atmospheres. Mikhail Eremets and his colleagues produce such cosmic pressures in their lab at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz – and they do so in surprisingly simple experiments. They are researching which unique transformations gases, but also metals, undergo under these conditions.

MaxPlanckResearch 3/2012

Open-Air Lab in the Amazon Rainforest
The setting in which researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry study which substances plants exchange with their environment is artificial, yet still as natural as possible. Nina Knothe, who works at the Mainz-based institute, is preparing such an experiment at the Max Planck Society’s sub-institute in Manaus, in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest, by checking the lighting conditions in a cuvette covered with an airtight film.
Issue 2011

MPR 1 /2011

Breathless in the Megacity
Megacities offer the enticing prospect of employment and the benefits of an urban infrastructure – but they also expose their inhabitants to high levels of air pollution. Together with an Indian Partner Group of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, Bhola Ram Gurjar is analyzing this pollution and how badly it is affecting the health of city dwellers.

MPR 1 /2011

Moon Dust Is Not to Be Sneezed At
When the astronauts of the Apollo 11 mission returned to Earth, they had almost 22 kilograms of rock from the surface of the moon in their baggage. Josef Zähringer from the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg was one of the first researchers allowed to analyze the material in the US. Two months later, Heinrich Wänke’s team at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz also received a grain.
Issue 2010

MPR 2 /2010

The Secrets of Cosmic Grains
No, the sky is not falling, but it does occasionally rain down cosmic chunks. And these are an enrichment for research.
Issue 2009

MPR 3 /2009

Searching for Traces in Heavy Seas
Researchers embarked on board a research vessel to investigate the gas emissions of phytoplankton.
Issue 2008

MPR 1 /2008

The Planet’s Laundromat
The Amazon region cleans the atmosphere, keeps the global atmospheric cycle running and stores water on a grand scale. These are just three reasons why the Max Planck Society main-
tains a branch in Manaus, in the heart of the Amazon region.
Issue 2007

MPR 4 /2007

Taking Air Samples on the Go
Once a year, atmospheric chemists travel by train from Moscow to Vladivostok and collect data on the concentration of surface-level climate-relevant trace gases.
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