In the April issue issue of the DLRmagazine, we are switching on the Sun. This is, of course, artificial and reserved for solar researchers in Jülich! The honeycomb assembly of 149 individually controllable radiator modules achieves 10,000 times the intensity of the solar radiation at Earth' surface. The new Synlight research facility is designed to, among other things, develop production processes for solar fuels, including hydrogen. The clean drives fuelled by this would not emit any black carbon, a material that can even affect the albedo of the snow in the Antarctic and may therefore also impact our climate. This is why DLR researchers switched their ordinary workstations for shovels and pickaxes, to take snow samples at Union Glacier. These samples are now being analysed in the Chilean colleagues' laboratories.
Further articles discuss the influence of bionics on aviation, lightweight rocket boosters for space travel and the human factors involved in transportation. One article takes us back to the Russian space station Mir and our scientific contributions to the MIR '92 and MIR ‘97 missions. What was mere science fiction on the Starship Enterprise became reality on the Mir. The Dornier Museum in Friedrichshafen has a special exhibition on the topic, which we visited and you can read all about in our section 'At the museum'.
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