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Foundation laid for Institute for Sustainable Materials Development at the Ohm

The property in Nuremberg has now been acquired for the establishment of the Institute for Sustainable Materials Development at the Ohm.

In Germany, there is a high demand for materials for industrial use - at the same time, there is a lack of resources for both plastics, which are primarily based on crude oil, and metals. The Institute for Sustainable Materials Development (INaM) at Nuremberg Institute of Technology Georg Simon Ohm (Ohm) aims to develop innovations for a more sustainable use of valuable materials. The foundation stone for this facility has now been laid: The Free State of Bavaria has purchased the land on which it is to be built.

The plot along Hirsvogelstrasse, also known as "Rädda Barnen", was acquired by Immobilien Freistaat Bayern (IMBY) on behalf of the Free State of Bavaria. With its expertise in property management, IMBY played a key role in securing an ideal location for the institute and supporting the sustainable ambitions of the Free State of Bavaria. The Nuremberg City Council had previously spoken out in favour of the sale and the construction of the research institute.

Bavaria's Science Minister Markus Blume emphasised on the occasion of the property acquisition: "Bavaria is building - on and for science, especially in Nuremberg. I am delighted that we have succeeded in acquiring the site on Hirsvogelstrasse. A real prime piece of land, the location is excellent: we can develop a unique institute for cutting-edge materials science right next to the main Ohm campus. This will strengthen one of the Ohm's top disciplines and interlink research and application even more closely. This fits perfectly with the university's profile: everything here is sustainable and innovative!"

Nuremberg's city leaders see the project as strengthening the city as a centre of science. Marcus König, Lord Mayor of the City of Nuremberg, stated: "Sustainable materials development is one of the key research and development areas of the future and, thanks to the successful expansion of Nuremberg Institute of Technology Georg Simon Ohm, Nuremberg is right at the forefront. Applied research that contributes to tackling the challenges of our time is a perfect fit for Nuremberg as a city committed to sustainability. This investment is therefore an investment in the future and this also applies to Nuremberg as a whole: a strong scientific landscape is a driving force for a young, well-educated, cosmopolitan and future-orientated vibrant urban society. The Ohm is coming, the Cramer-Klett Park and trees are staying."

Nuremberg's Head of Business and Science, Dr Andrea Heilmaier, emphasised: "I am very pleased that we can send an important signal for the future viability of Nuremberg as a science location by concluding the purchase agreement. It creates the basis for the establishment of the Institute for Sustainable Materials Development at Nuremberg Institute of Technology Georg Simon Ohm. Nuremberg will benefit from this step in the medium and long term in the competition for locations. As an important network node in Nuremberg's scientific landscape, the Ohm University of Applied Sciences acts as a centre of applied research far beyond the city limits and will now be further strengthened."

Research at the Institute for Sustainable Materials Development will focus on various ways of making industrial materials more sustainable. As a result of increased environmental awareness, plastics, for example, are increasingly associated with negative aspects. At the same time, their special properties make them indispensable for many products and processes across all industries: They are used in automotive engineering as the basis for tyres and upholstery, in aviation as cabin materials, in medical technology as protective gloves as well as syringes, heart valves and artificial joints. In order to make this important class of materials fit for the future and strengthen their social acceptance through innovation, INaM's research aims to improve the sustainability of plastics, among other things. This is achieved, for example, through the development of bioplastics, resource-orientated additive manufacturing processes such as 3D printing and new recycling strategies. The recycling of metals is also an important goal in order to conserve resources. If the right recycling processes are used, recovered metals can largely replace primary metals and save a large proportion of energy requirements. Researchers at the Ohm are already involved in numerous research projects in this area, which are to be pooled at INaM.

"All stages of the product life cycle will be considered at the Institute for Sustainable Materials Development: from environmentally friendly production and resource-saving processing to recycling and reuse," explained Ohm President Prof Dr Niels Oberbeck. "The institute gives us the opportunity to bundle and intensify research and development and drive innovation forward. We are therefore very grateful that, with the support of the Free State of Bavaria and the City of Nuremberg, we have been given the opportunity to create the necessary spatial conditions in the immediate vicinity of our main campus."

The former Rädda-Barnen site in Hirsvogelstraße, where the Institute for Sustainable Materials Development at Nuremberg Institute of Technology Georg Simon Ohm is to be built. (Photo: Matthias Wiedmann)

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