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Measuring Freiburg’s climate, defying age, understanding the 1968 era

The latest issue of the University newspaper uni’leben has been published

Freiburg, Jul 19, 2018

Measuring Freiburg’s climate, defying age, understanding the 1968 era

Photo: Sandra Meyndt

And now for the weather report
Together with his students the Freiburg meteorologist Prof. Dr. Andreas Christen put together a smartphone-connected mobile weather station made of microcomputers, SD cards, GPS receiver, temperature sensor, power bank, bicycle bag, a piece of tubing and foam rubber. The students clamp them to the wheel, race around sophisticated routes through Freiburg and collect and transmit real-time meteorological data that show the differences between Münsterplatz, Sonnhalde and Schwarzwaldstraße. The device costs just under 60 euros, and Christen’s idea could spread worldwide, especially for large cities in less affluent countries. This method offers the opportunity to contribute to the yet missing data necessary for studying the urban climate in a cost-effective manner.
Read the article [only German]


The secret to longevity
It is actually true for the animal kingdom: those who procreate a lot have a short lifespan – for those who are less fertile, they live longer. But social animals such as insects that create entire cities seem to escape this negative connection. A prime example would be the queen of the termite species Macrotermes bellicosus. She continuously lays about 20,000 eggs daily. And yet she can live for as long as 20 years. These types of workers have the same genetics as their queen, but they remain infertile and therefore only live for a few months. “Macrotermes queens are probably the terrestrial animals with the highest reproductive success rate,” says biologist Prof. Dr. Judith Korb. How is that possible? Korb, together with her team, found a clue as to why the queen and king, unlike the workers, are practically non-aging.
Read the article [only German]


50 years after the epochal watershed
The protest of May 1968 in Paris, the demonstrations against the Vietnam War, the shots fired at Rudi Dutschke: The year 1968 is considered the culmination of a student revolt that changed the world in the 1960s and 1970s. But how did this change happen, and how profound was it? What effects has the epochal watershed had on the relationship between men and women, educational institutions, protest forms and popular culture? Fifty years later there are different views about it. Six Freiburg researchers outline the impact of the 68ers from the perspective of sociology, musicology, history and media culture studies.
Read the article [only German]


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Rimma Gerenstein
Editor uni’leben
University of Freiburg
Tel.: 0761/203-8812