20 Jul 2019

SIEF Berlin


An industry tour through Berlin

After the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting all the Australian delegates packed up shop, jumped on a train and headed to Berlin. It was time for our industry tour, courtesy of the Science and Industry Endowment Fund in Australia.

There’s one main takeaway here, its that actually providing proper funding to research has some amazing benefits.

I digress. I don’t have too much to say in here apart from how great it was to see so many labs in so many areas, all working towards scientific and technological progress. We visited a lab with tons of molecular-beam epitaxy going on all at once. The Max-Born institute, full of fun lasers (in infrared, sorry, no pics).

We visited BESSY (it’s a synchrotron).

We visited the Frauhoffer institute HHI, which does an amazing amount of work on photonics, communications and, most fun of all, virtual reality research. And as I know something of this area, this was the highlight for me. Actually came very close to asking right then and there if they had any positions open for next year that I could apply for.

On top of all this, we went on a few walks around the city. It would be a sin to go to Berlin and not see any of the Berlin wall.

We went to a fancy meet up at the embassy to chat with research heads from the various institutions. I don’t normally say this about networking events, but I actually wish that went for longer, there were so many interesting things to talk about and an hour and half was by no means enough time!

Oh and of course, for a trip highlight, may I present the Brandenburg Gate with a warm cheese pretzel.