Trip to Aachen 2014

Twice in the past, Advisory Board member Dr Paul Rheinländer and his wife Angelika, have invited the IGSN students for cultural trips to Cologne and Münster. This year all students got the invitation to visit the city of Aachen, the former capital of the Carolingian empire in ancient times. The stories about the marvellous trips in previous years had spread and a bus fully packed with students and IGSN staff left Bochum University at 08:00 on the morning of 6th May. As always Dr. Rheinländer and his wife welcomed us warmly and, as always, they were extraordinarily well prepared. For example, during the journey to Aachen we saw a film about the life of Charlemagne, the 1200th anniversary of whose death is being commemorated this year.

Arriving in Aachen we were welcomed by Dr Walter Maaßen, who hosted and organized the days' programme. Two excellent guides accompanied us through the impressive cathedral and its treasury where they explained its architecture, history and importance, as well as many of material artefacts of Charlemagne's time. For instance, did you know that crawling under Charlemagne's throne exonerates you from sin (could come in handy), or that none of Charlemagne's pictures is actually of him? In fact we don't even know what he looked like!

For lunch we entered a cosy little restaurant called "The golden Unicorn" where we could gather our strength for the next part of the visit. We then travelled by bus to the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology (ILT), where we were welcomed by its director Prof Dr Reinhart Poprawe MA. With about 420 employees and more than 11,000m2 of usable floorspace the ILT is one of the most important development and contract research institutes in its specific field worldwide. Despite hosting one of the most important conferences about laser technology with an estimated 600 visitors the very next day, Prof Poprawe gave us an insightful talk about laser technology and its applications in the 21st century. This was followed by a guided tour through the impressive production and research halls where everyone was fascinated by the possibilities and the innovative applications of laser technology. This was really spectacular!

After so much information all of the participants enjoyed a wonderful dinner in the amazing "Golf Club" restaurant in Aachen, where this wonderful day was brought to a close.

The IGSN would like to thank Dr Rheinländer and his wife for a fantastic day out which provided the IGSN students with so many insights into the fascinating world of history and research.

Thank you for a wonderful day!

Photos of the event

Click on the slide show, then use the arrow keys to navigate between the pictures

In the footsteps of Charlemagne

Arriving in Aachen

A coffee is necessary before the programme starts

Welcome to the cathedral and the treasury

Historic town centre

IGSN members and staff are always busy: part 1

Part 2

What is the guide explaining to Dr Rheinländer (in front right) and the group?

They are looking at the marvelous ceiling of the cathedral

The shrine of St Mary inside the dome

"Batman begins"

Charlemagne's throne, where since 790 thirty German kings have been crowned

Crawl under the throne and you will be exonerated from sin!

View from the throne into the cathedral

Bust of Charlemagne (which is in fact the face of Henry IV, French king in the 16th century)

The treasury

Restaurant "The Golden Unicorn" in the historic town centre

Enjoying lunch

The Fraunhofer Institute of Laser Technology

The production and research halls of the Fraunhofer Institute

Dr. Walter Maaßen (first row, right), left beside him Mrs Angelika Rheinländer, Dr Paul Rheinländer with students and stuff of the IGSN in front of the Fraunhofer Institute.

On our way to the Golf Club Restaurant

Culinary conclusion