Bergische Universität Wuppertal

Goals of the Project Photo-LeNa

The main goal of this project is an improvement of the quality of teaching chemistry by curricular innovation. This means the renewal of contents and methods of teaching chemistry as well as their adjustment to state-of-the-art scientific knowledge, questions relevant for the future and life in todays technical civilization.
To achieve this, the domain of photoprocesses has been chosen because photoprocesses are perfectly fit for the communication of fundamental contents, concepts and methods of chemistry and related disciplines, using examples from current research and technology.
By close cooperation of two chemistry professors and a chemical education professor, didactically concise and scientifically consistent experiments, concepts and materials for teaching chemistry are to be investigated and developed. From the point of view of chemistry didactics these are to activate and accelerate the renewal of teaching chemistry at high-school level and, closely linked to this, the renewal of (further) teacher training. Furthermore they are to give new impulses for teaching organic photochemistry and photo-active polymers at university level.
Additionally in this project the two the scientists focus on challenging questions within the closer framework of interests from their research in photoprocesses.
From the intersection of these research interests new insights, experiments, teaching concepts and teaching materials for school and university are to be investigated and developed, which are to become part of the scientists' own teaching (and possibly also of other colleagues in photochemical workgroups).
In the sub-project "Photoprocesses in the innovation of teaching chemistry" (Tausch) the focus is on the development of model experiments, didactical concepts and materials a) on the cycle photosynthesis - respiration, especially on endergonic photoredox reactions and the accompanying energy conversion and storage and b) on plastic solar cells (organic photovoltaic cells). These and further photochemical contents are to be integrated into curricula from high schools and teacher education at university.
In the sub-project "Experiments on the understanding of (photo-)catalysis" (Griesbeck) new reaction media and light sources for photoredox reactions are to be investigated.
The sub-project "Photoactive polymers for organic photovoltaics" (Scherf) focuses on the development of synthesis schemes (keyword direct arylation polycondensations) for aromatic donor polymers as components for organic solar cells as well as their use in (simple) plastic solar cells.
Besides new scientific insights for research and teaching this project also pursues aims which serve the public understanding of science.