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Company News, 2005-09-30, 02:31 PM

1st Rhine-Ruhr International Materials Conference - International materials research elite meets in Essen

Will new materials provide the solution to energy problems in the 21st century? This and other questions will be discussed by leading materials experts and top industry and political figures at the 1st Rhine-Ruhr International Materials Conference on October 23 and 24 at Villa Hügel in Essen. Initiated by the Initiativkreis Ruhrgebiet organization, the event will culminate in the presentation of the EUR100,000 Rhine-Ruhr International Materials Award, the world's most lucrative award for materials science.

Innovative materials bring new energy. To make industrial processes more efficient and at the same time save energy, new materials are indispensable. The role that will be played by materials technology in the energy sector in the 21st century will be discussed by around 130 top experts at the 1st Rhine-Ruhr International Materials Conference. A variety of subject areas are on the agenda, including fossil energy, nuclear fusion, wind energy, solar energy, hydrogen technology and global energy supplies. The speakers include the Polish Minister of Science Prof. Michal Kleiber and Dr. Dadi Zhou, an expert from the Chinese Energy Research Institute of the State Development Planning Commission. Prof. Klaus Töpfer, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), will also speak to conference participants.

"Research and development into new materials is an important growth engine for Germany," says Prof. Dr. Ekkehard Schulz, Executive Board Chairman of ThyssenKrupp AG and moderator of Initiativkreis Ruhrgebiet, an association of 58 national and international companies based in the Ruhr. As an ambassador for the Ruhr, the association has for 15 years been initiating projects in industry, science and culture designed to raise the profile of the region across Europe. "The International Materials Conference is another important step in this," says Schulz, who is involved in an initiative called "Partners for Innovation" which brings together more than 300 experts from business, science, politics and trade unions to strengthen innovation in Germany.

World-ranking materials award

The conference will culminate in the presentation of the EUR100,000 "Rhine-Ruhr International Materials Award", the world's most lucrative materials award. It honors outstanding achievement in materials research in the energy technology sector and is awarded solely on the basis of nominations, like the Nobel Prize. As well as Prof. Dr. Ekkehard Schulz, the judges include renowned figures from research and industry in the areas of materials and energy technology. The award winner will remain a secret until the award ceremony on October 24.

The Rhine-Ruhr International Materials Conference is co-sponsored by the International Union of Materials Research Societies (IUMRS), the European Materials Research Society (E-MRS), the Federation of European Materials Societies (FEMS) and the European Materials Forum (EMF).

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