11 students from Jordan universities are participants of the DAAD sponsored programme “A Novel Antimicrobial polymeric Nanocomposite for Antifouling Water Filtration Membrane“ since early July.
For five years, ISAS offers natural science and engineering students from universities in Jordan an eight-week summer school on different research topics with relevance for society covered by the DAAD-programme “German-Arab-transformation-partnership”. This year´s summer school deals with developing efficient and cost-effective water filters using membranes in an interdisciplinary and application-oriented teaching concept.
The works of the students take up approaches of the research project “biohybrid interfaces and their application in diagnostics”. This project examines how to modify surfaces to gain rejecting effects for germs or to make them attractive for cells or tissues and interactions between materials and biology are analysed. Within this context, the fouling of membranes used in water treatment is also being investigated. Innovative processes for reducing of germs in clinical settings could also be used for water treatment. Thus, results generated at ISAS could be transferred into other contexts.
Aside from the practical units, the curriculum consists of interdisciplinary sessions such as statistics, scientific publication, IT-applications, and new this year a module entrepreneurship including technology transfer and founding of start-ups. Additionally, visits to universities and companies are part of the schedule.
Roland Hergenröder, group leader for bioresponsive materials at ISAS, initiated the cooperation with a Jordan colleague during a guest stay at the German-Jordanian University in Amman. Since then, the Jordans are interested in the training programme at ISAS. “We are also very pleased about the interest and enthusiasm and we benefit from the exchange with these committed students. Sometimes, the match between students and the research projects at ISAS is that perfect, that we are able to win them as young scientists,” reports Hergenröder.
Sokiyna Al-Bustanji, pharmacy student in Jordan, summarises her impressions so far as follows: “I am impressed that we could already take our own measurements on the nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscope (NMR) and on the infrared spectroscope (IR). The scientists at ISAS as well as our group members are interdisciplinary. This way, we get input from various disciplines and we sharpen our knowledge as water treatment is a big challenge in Jordan, too. The leisure activities in the weekends are a great add-on, because there is really a lot to see here!”
ISAS plans to continue the cooperation with the Jordan partners on further research topics in the future.