The Karl-Winnacker-Institut is the scientific research institute of DECHEMA e.V., the Society for Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology located in Frankfurt am Main/Germany. It is a distinguished technical-scientific society with more than 5,000 members. Established in 1926, DECHEMA’s work is interdisciplinary, bringing together scientists, engineers and technologists. It is dedicated to the support of research, teaching and technological progress in the fields of materials, chemical engineering and biotechnology. DECHEMA serves as a professional network for technology transfer as well as for an exchange of information and experience. One of DECHEMA’s main activities is the organization of ACHEMA – International Exhibition-Congress on Chemical Engineering, Environmental Protection and Biotechnology every 3 years in Frankfurt am Main/Germany – the world’s most important chemical engineering event with about 4,000 exhibitors and 200.000 visitors.
The Karl-Winnacker-Institut regards itself as an instrument of DECHEMA’S scientific work. Its chief function is to provide a link between academic and industrial research and development. The distinctive nature of the Karl-Winnacker-Institut is reflected in the range of its work and in the structure of the institute. Its activities centre on precompetitive basic and applied research in high temperature materials, corrosion, electrochemistry, technical chemistry and biochemical engineering, which are the five research groups with a staff of approximately 70 people. Developing solutions to industrial problems in bilateral contract research is another main task.
An essential aspect of its work is passing on the knowledge and experience it has acquired by offering academic teaching and further education for professional people. This manifests itself in the teaching commitments of senior members of staff at renowned German universities, in the institute’s further education courses for people employed in industry and public service, in the organisation of workshops, seminars and colloquia as well as in the nature of the institute’s research activities.
Another field is scientific and technical consultation for industry and politics as well as participation in a wide range of expert bodies.
These key tasks have produced an organization in which scientists from different disciplines work together and exploit the potential of the resulting synergies. The scientists are supported by the institute’s service units, especially for materials characterization, which are at the disposal of all the research groups.