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Information für die Wissenschaft Nr. 44 | 22. Juli 2009
ERA-Chemistry Announces 5th Flash Conference "Big Task of Water: Building and Destroying Molecules in Water"

ERA-Chemistry, the network of national research councils of European countries, would like to announce the 5th Flash Conference that will take place on 18 to 22 October 2009 in the Abtei Frauenwörth/Chiemsee, Germany, and will be dedicated to "Big Task of Water: Building and Destroying Molecules in Water" (Organisers: Prof. Werner Kunz and Prof. Thomas Zemb)

Water is a special solvent: omnipresent on this planet, it features no less than 28 physico-chemical anomalies, a larger number of which life depends upon. This flash conference deals with novel approaches to extend the views on chemistry in water. It is not about classical solution routes, but tends to bring together experts on the physico-chemistry of water and self-organisation with chemists working on modern synthetic routes in water, such as novel hydrothermal processes, microwave reactions, or employing the reactivity of confined water. As a result, it is strived for a joint modern view on the possibilities which water chemistry can provide for the society, such as clean water, as a sustainable replacement for organic solvents, and novel processes only enabled by water.

The conference will cover the following topics:

  • What is so special in water? The present state of art
  • Self-organisation in water - chemical aspects
  • The role of water for material design, biomaterials etc.
  • Replacing organic solvents by water - a major step towards green chemistry
  • Controlling chemical reactions in water and confined water
  • Purification of water
  • Novel hydrothermal processes
  • New aspects of industrial water-based processes

The ERA-Chemistry Flash Conferences are based on high-level lectures by invited internationally renowned specialists in the domain. The following speakers have confirmed their attendance:

  • H. Eugene Stanley, Boston, USA
  • Ad van der Avoird, Nijmegen, Netherlands
  • Richard Buchner, Regensburg, Germany
  • Juan-Manuel Garcia-Ruiz, Granada, Spain
  • Daniel Harries, Jerusalem, Israel
  • John Finney, London, United Kingdom
  • Ivan Brovschenko, Dortmund, Germany
  • Chao-Jun Li, Montreal, Canada
  • Pedro M. P. Gois, Lisbon, Portugal
  • Ferenc Joó, Debrecen, Hungary
  • C. Oliver Kappe, Graz, Austria,
  • Thilo Hofmann, Vienna, Austria
  • Véronique Rataj, Lille, France
  • Frédéric Goettmann, Marcoule, France
  • Gerd Brunner, Hamburg, Germany
  • Mika Mänttäri, Lappeenranta, Finland
  • Raphael Semiat, Haifa, Israel

Flash Historical Background
In 2007, the European project ERA-Chemistry inaugurated a new style of chemistry conference: the Flash Conference. It aims to bring together experienced and young researchers to discuss topics at the frontiers of chemical research. The Flash Conferences are based around some key points that differentiate them from all existing conferences. These five principles are:

  • "Hot topics" approach - Emerging fields of immediate scientific importance.
  • Innovative scientific organisation - The Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) of ERA-Chemistry proposes a topic of high relevance and chooses the chairpersons.
  • A limited audience - The conference is fully open to all researchers, and junior researchers are especially welcome. The maximum number of attendees is between 100-120 with selection of contributions based on quality.
  • Attraction of especially young scientists: no registration fees, no profits - the event is organised at the lowest possible cost.
  • A dedicated format - The conferences are scheduled on a three-day basis with a mixture of long lectures by invited speakers, free-time for discussion and poster presentations, and finally selected short talks.


Weiterführende Informationen


  • Prof. Werner Kunz,
    University of Regensburg,
    Regensburg, Germany,
  • Prof. Thomas Zemb, ICSM,
    Marcoule, France,

Conference Site:
The 5th Flash Conference will take place in the Abtei Frauenwörth on the island Frauenchiemsee/Chiemsee close to the city of Munich. It will start in the afternoon of 18 October 2009 and will be finished in the morning of 22 October 2009. There will be a conference dinner in the evening of 21 October 2009.

Contact person at the DFG:

  • Dr. Kathrin Winkler,
    German Research Foundation - DFG,
    53170 Bonn, Germany,
    phone: +49 228 885-2021