We believe in children. These are not just the words of an
expectant mother, but also the creed of a research establish-
ment whose daily work is dedicated to the future of our society.
Without a doubt, children are our future and, in view of this,
we must invest a lot of time, energy and intellect in both.
Over 10 years ago, DLR took an important step in this
direction by setting up the first laboratory specifically aimed at
school children. An ingenious idea and the unrelenting perse-
verance of one DLR employee resulted in the establishment of
the first DLR_School_Lab in Göttingen. Today, we run 12 of
these extracurricular places of learning, spread across Germany,
and the trend is showing no sign of abating. Conducting
research like scientists, awaiting results with bated breath, not
just having theory drummed into one’s head but trying it out for
oneself – today the school laboratories are more popular than
ever. Back at the start, there was no way of knowing how
successful they would be, and for that reason, securing the
necessary long-term funding was no easy matter. Today,
fortunately, there is no longer any doubt, as the benefits are
recognised. If just two children in a class who once visited a
DLR_School_Lab go on to take a degree course in science or
mathematics, we can be proud.
But at the same time, we actively contribute towards the
further development of our knowledge-based society through
new research approaches, ambitious collaborative projects
and technological investigations. What will happen when the
MASCOT asteroid lander reaches its destination in 2018?
Equally exciting is the question of the aerodynamic properties of
the new A350 medium-range airliner. DLR is testing the aircraft
to determine whether its flight characteristics meet the predic-
tions of the developers and manufacturers. DLR even performs
highly precise scientific studies into gliding; with our brand-new
measurement glider, the flow researchers, aerodynamicists and
flight experts of tomorrow are testing their developments.
At German Aerospace Day, being held at DLR Cologne on
22 September 2013, there will be an opportunity to experience
the knowledge of tomorrow in person. With good reason, we
will once again be focusing on children and adolescents. Just as
we did two years ago, we will be treating them as very impor-
tant guests, our VIPs. We have increased the number of site
tours specifically targeted at them as well as the number of
people acting as hosts – guided tours, no queues and scientists
who devote their time to the youngsters and to explaining
everything that they are eager to know. We are creating oppor-
tunities for these young researchers and discoverers, and we are
hoping for many curious visitors – a guarantee for our future.
Head of DLR Corporate Communications