Construction work begins on new laboratory and seminar building

At the beginning of the new year, Bau- und Liegenschaftsbetrieb NRW (BLB NRW) has begun construction work on the new so-called "multi-use building" in the southwestern area of Poppelsdorf campus. The construction site had already been set up before the turn of the year. In the future, the new building will serve as interim space for various institute buildings of the University of Bonn that are in need of renovation. For this purpose, in addition to laboratories the multi-use building will provide meeting rooms, workrooms and offices for several hundred University members. The interim space is necessary to free up the existing institute buildings for the upcoming renovation measures.

2021 in Review

2021 was an eventful year with many ups and downs. We look back at the highlights in the news and press releases of the University of Bonn.

Earth’s first giant

A skull two meters long, a total body length of 17 meters, a weight of 45 tons, fins that comb the sea - what sounds like a sperm whale is actually a reptile and lived in the oceans around 250 million years ago. Now, an international team of researchers led by the Universities of Bonn and Mainz, as well as the Claremont Colleges and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, reports on this first giant animal that ever evolved. The researchers describe a new species of ichthyosaur, also called "fish-saurians" - the skeleton with the imposing skull, larger than that of Tyrannosaurus rex was excavated in the US state of Nevada. The study now proves that the ichthyosaurs evolved their impressive size within only three million years, much faster than the evolution of gigantism in today's whales. The results show how marine ecosystems can build up and respond to abiotic changes such as climate, atmosphere or water conditions. The study was published in the journal Science.

Conference on digital technologies for sustainable crop production

How can digital technologies be used for more sustainable crop production? Researchers from a wide range of disciplines are working on these questions at the Cluster of Excellence PhenoRob at the University of Bonn. At the Cluster's flagship conference, DIGICROP, experts pool their knowledge, bringing together distinguished speakers from around the world. Given the great success of DIGICROP 2020 at the end of last year, preparations are underway for the next edition of the conference, which will be held digitally from March 28 to 30, 2022. The Cluster of Excellence PhenoRob is receiving support from the AI Institute for Next Generation Food Systems (USA). Scientists are invited to submit presentations in the form of videos by January 5.

"Heavy" hydrogen stabilizes drugs

Researchers at the University of Bonn have presented a method that allows the heavier hydrogen "brother" deuterium to be introduced specifically into many different molecules. The deuterated compounds obtained in this way are more stable against degradation by certain enzymes. Drugs produced using this method can be effective for longer, meaning they have to be taken in lower doses or less frequently. The article has now been published in the journal "Angewandte Chemie".

Out of Africa: The path of Homo sapiens

What routes did Homo sapiens take on his way from Africa to Europe and Asia in the previous millennia? The climatic conditions changed, and with them the living conditions. The advance was hampered in some places by deserts, in others by dense forests. Over the past twelve years, a team of researchers within the framework of the Collaborative Research Center 806 "Our Way to Europe" unraveled the complex interplay of cultural innovations and environment that shaped migrations. After completion of the interdisciplinary joint project, the researchers now present a book with the most important findings under the leadership of the Universities of Bonn and Cologne.

Quantum marbles in a bowl of light

Which factors determine how fast a quantum computer can perform its calculations? Physicists at the University of Bonn and the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology have devised an elegant experiment to answer this question. The results of the study are published in the journal Science Advances. 

Agricultural scientist from PhenoRob Cluster of Excellence is most cited

Prof. Dr. Anne-Katrin Mahlein, co-opted professor at the University of Bonn and Director of the Institute of Sugar Beet Research (Göttingen) is the most cited author in the research field sensing and imaging of plant disease. According to a publication by the journal “Tropical Plant Pathology”, Mahlein’s research has significantly pushed this area of research forward. Overall, the University Bonn has been determined to be the most productive and most collaborative institution in the field.

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