Funded Projects: ERS Practical Examples

  MicoEnrich © Chair of Biotechnology RWTH


Microplastics are plastic particles that are smaller than 5 mm. These small plastic particles pose a danger to humans, as we ingest them undetected through food, drinking water, and air. The ERS-funded MicroEnrich projects aims to develop a method to filter out microplastic particles smaller than 5 µm from water.

  Lab vials on a desk © Nicolas Chatain

Optimizing Efficacy – From Chemical Hits to Application in the Treatment of Leukemia

The ERS-funded project aimed at the preparation of novel chemical agents and their application in the treatment of myeloid and lymphoid leukemias. Molecules with new scaffolds were prepared and their efficacy and toxicity tested to improve the properties of known bioactive compounds.


AISLE: Adaptive Statistical Language Learning

In the age of globalization, education must be oriented to an international world. But the aspects of language skills in educational and scientific contexts go beyond informal language. In the ERS-funded AISLE project, an adaptive e-learning system was developed to track and accelerate the acquisition of academic language skills.


  Youn girl wearing headphones and holding buzzers, sitting in front of a screen © RWTH Aachen

Improving the Learning Environment

In one ear and out the other! That is how it is with many children and students when they do not quite understand something. This is where the ERS-supported project Selective Attention in Children would like to help. The researchers are working with primary school children with a mobile hearing laboratory directly on site and are looking into the question of how background noise affects children's attention.

  © RWTH Aachen

The Future of Virtual Reality

Many creative activities implicate a constant change between real objects and computer models, but this interrupts the creative flow. Virtual Reality (VR) technology should help to build a bridge between paper and virtual design. The potential of VR and how it is changing the future of design, architecture, and medicine is demonstrated by the ERS-funded project Modelling in a Virtual Environment.

  Railroad lines in a valley © Jürgen Jacobs

Efficiency in Railroad Transportation

An interdisciplinary team of researchers in Aachen has developed a computer model to optimize waiting times in rail traffic. This should make it possible to choose optimal operating strategies for train stations and railroad networks and to facilitate the planning of new railroad systems. The insights are also relevant for other forms of transportation, such as aircraft, trams, and cars.

  Balance bike and gourd © Julia Arndt

Construction Parts from the Greenhouse: Renewable Raw Materials for Industrial Production

How can renewable raw materials be used in industrial production? The interdisciplinary project TEPHA – TEchnical Product HArvesting, funded by the ERS, is dedicated to answering these exciting questions.

  Sensor fish in a testing tank © Elena Klopries

Sensorfisch: Pocket-Sized Species Conservation

Hydro plants can pose a serious danger to different fish species, as it is impossible for many animals to pass through unharmed. The RWTH Aachen interdisciplinary project Sensorfisch, funded by ERS, aims to contribute to a solution to this problem.

  Sign language interpreter: once with and once without an animated mask. © SignGes


Together, researchers have developed SignersMask software, which places a mask over sign language videos in real time, obscuring the distinctive features of the signers' faces and hands so that they themselves are no longer recognizable as a person.

  Flooding at Aachen West Station © Julian Hofmann, IWW

Rainwater Living Lab – Sociotechnical Innovations Through Living Labs

The ERS-funded Rainwater Living Lab project investigates the risks posed by heavy rainfall and develops holistic measures to reduce the risk of flooding. Drone flights were used to collect data of the area around Westbahnhof, which is prone to flooding due to its topographical location. The data is then used to develop a numerical model.