Sunlight is a huge source of energy. However, it is not available 24/7. But, solar energy can be used to split water. Water splitting is the decomposition of water into oxygen and hydrogen gas due to the passage of an electric current induced by two electrodes in a conductive solution. This hydrogen can be stored or transported and be used later. Scientists at the Institute for Solar Fuels work on a way to split water efficiently by studing different type of electrodes. Usually, a high photocurrent during water splitting means a high production of hydrogen. When I arrived for my internship at HZB in Wannsee,Read More →

“Be a diamond. Flourish under pressure” – Maureen Joyce Connolly To most people diamonds are well-known as the marvelous gemstones which used in a piece of jewelry. However, they are not only “a girl’s best friends”. Due to their remarkable physical and optical properties diamonds can be used by scientists and engineers as well! With this blogpost I’ll guide you through my research here at HZB and, hopefully, will share the delight and enjoyment of working with diamonds. Why diamonds? To have a better understanding of diamond it is useful to have a look at its crystalline structure. The strong sp3 covalent bonds between carbonRead More →

Let’s spray and create samples ! In the institute of Solar Fuel, the main research is to produce hydrogen from sunlight and water. Hydrogen can be used to easily store energy and also directly for transportation. But how can we produce it? Only from the sunlight, a metal oxide semiconductor and water. Photons from sunlight will be absorbed by the metal oxide, and this will generate electrons and holes which oxidize or reduce water. The reaction between the electron and hole and the electrolyte allows to separate water in oxygen and hydrogen. Let’s see how we make this metal Oxide! SPRAY PYROLYSIS: The chemical methodRead More →

First Impressions I’m a rare example of a student in the international summer student program, who lives already in Berlin. At the first day I was really impressed how many people arrived from different countries with different backgrounds. I was really curious what the others study and where they come from. Can I keep up with these international students? Do I have enough knowledge to compete with them? That were questions I asked myself. But back to my background, I study geological science with the specialization geodynamics and geomaterials at the FU Berlin. In the main part of the study we look on natural systems,Read More →

What is your motivation to be a scientist? This question has been lingering in my mind during my student career. Of course, the answer is plenty, varying from person to person. I have met many scientists through the years. They shared their personal stories. I have concluded the reasons that attract them in their chosen subject are money, social statue, a raw love, to be most intelligent, a sense of duty and so on, and most commonly, a combination of them. The most impressive one for me is “curiosity”. I got it from a young scientist by an online investigation. He describes science is theRead More →

Hard it may be to believe, but the world seen utterly different from two sides: the world of chemistry. TWO SIDES? Argentine and German chemistry. Since I was a child, I have been interested in chemistry, without even knowing what it was, how everything we touch, everything we see, everything we feel could be explained. That led me to insert myself into its study. In today’s world, on alert the planet, renewable energies arose, and something I had to do, join my passion and my commitment to everything that made me study chemistry: simply the world. BUT IF CHEMISTRY IS UNIVERSAL… As I said, chemistryRead More →

At the end of the 90s, a consortium of several German research institutions proposed a multi-purpose infrared beamline for the new electron storage ring BESSY II under the acronym IRIS (InfraRotInitiative Synchrotronstrahlung). Funded by two proposals to the BMBF the beamline started operating in 2002 as a Cooperative Research Groupe (CRG) beamline and turned into a BESSY-operated beamline in 2004 at the end of the BMBF funding period.Read More →