Research • Educate • Connect
Towards a sustainable bioeconomy

Research • Educate • Connect
Towards a sustainable bioeconomy

Federal Research Minister Karliczek at the "AlgaeFlipper"

On August 21, Federal Minister of Research Anja Karliczek visited the floating bio-economy exhibition at MS Wissenschaft in Cologne. Three exhibits were explained to the Minister in detail, including the exhibit "Clean water through algae" from the Bioeconomy Science Center and IBG-2 Plant Sciences, Forschungszentrum Jülich, which was presented by Dr. Holger Klose.

MS Wissenschaft has been on its exhibition tour through Germany since 30 July. On the ship, many facets of the bioeconomy can be discovered through around 30 interactive exhibits. One of them is the exhibit "Clean water through algae", which in the form of a pinball machine illustrates how algae can be used to clean wastewater and recover valuable nutrients.

The "AlgaeFlipper" was one of three exhibits about which Anja Karliczek, Federal Minister of Education and Research, informed herself in detail during her visit on August 21. Dr. Holger Klose (Research Centre Jülich/BioSC) explained to the Minister the basics of so-called AlgalTurfScrubbing, in which wastewater is directed over an algae turf. The algae absorb nutrients such as nitrate and phosphate from the wastewater and use them for their growth. The result is clean water and a nutrient-rich algae biomass that can be used as fertilizer.

"I think the exhibition is great and I hope that as many people as possible will take the opportunity to learn more about the bioeconomy," said Minister Karliczek. "On board, all anyone interested can learn interactively how research and innovations contribute to a sustainable future. After all, we are all facing major challenges together: The growing world population requires ever more food and raw materials. At the same time, we must protect the environment, climate and biodiversity. This is the only way we can preserve the basis of our existence.“

The ship will continue its journey from Cologne via the Rhine and Main rivers to Franconia, then along the Danube to Straubing. This year's tour ends there on October 17. In 2021 the exhibition will be on display in many other cities. The exhibition is recommended for visitors aged twelve and older. Admission is free. Distance and hygiene rules as well as compulsory masks apply on board.

Further information about MS Wissenschaft:

More information on water purification with algae:

Photo: BMBF / Hans-Joachim Rickel