Experiments (German only)
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Already Liebig let it explode...
Chemistry experimental lectures have a long tradition. Justus von Liebig already held public lectures in 1853. With his experiments he received enormous attention, not always in the expected way. Once a gas mixture consisting of carbon sulfide and nitrogen oxide exploded, and the attending royal couple was injured. However, Liebig wrote rather satisfied: “... the wounds are healed and we have become more interesting.”
Today safety regulations are standard. Still the urgency to bring chemistry to the general public remains: Within the series “Collegium Alexandrinum”, a series of lectures for the general public at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Prof. Klaus Brodersen (1927-1997) initiated the Chemistry Magic Show tradition. Even without impressive explosions he succeeded to fascinate an ever growing audience.
In the meantime the image of the lecture has changed. Under the guidance of Prof. van Eldik, who has been full professor in Erlangen since 1994, the experimental lecture grew into an effective multi-media presentation that overfills the lecture hall with an audience of far more than a thousand. But still the chemical experiment centers the scene. Chemistry is an experimental science discipline!