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  • Writer's pictureHana Křížová

Reflection on two workshops on working with an electron microscope for the public

Updated: 6 days ago

At the end of May and mid-June, two workshops focused on working with an electron microscope that we opened to the general public took place at our Institute for Nanomaterials at TU Liberec. These events held in cooperation with our German partners, within the Interbridge project, attracted a total of 25 enthusiastic participants. Among them were four visitors from Zittau, Germany, which were very pleased and suggests that cross-border cooperation works excellently.

One of the participants was Mrs. Yolanthe from the German town Zittau, who gave us a short interview. "I am retired, but I have always been fascinated by natural sciences. I learned about your workshop on the internet and was immediately intrigued. I persuaded a friend, and we took the train to Liberec. In the morning, we enjoyed a walk around the city and a visit to the botanical garden, and in the afternoon, we immersed ourselves in the world of the electron microscope. I follow your project regularly and support it very much because you promote cross-border cooperation and give people the opportunity to look into scientific work," she told us enthusiastically.

Mrs. Leonie and her colleague Lukas also came from Zittau. The electron microscope was not new to them, as they both work at the Center for Innovation and Technology Transfer, which is part of the Zittau/Görlitz University of Applied Sciences, much like our Institute for Nanomaterials is part of TUL. Nevertheless, they both clearly enjoyed the workshop. They brought several plant samples with them, such as poppy seeds and burdock fruit. Ms. Leonie also surprised me with her excellent Czech. She works as a project coordinator at the University in Zittau and visited our institute to establish further professional contacts.

As with previous workshops, this time participants could bring their own samples, which they then processed into specimens for the electron microscope. After making the images, we asked them to artistically process their creations and send them back to us. Several funny, interesting, and beautiful creations indeed came to us, and we are very grateful for that. We will use these images for an upcoming traveling exhibition, which will be another bridge between science and art.

To make the participants feel as comfortable as possible, we prepared light refreshments for

them, available throughout the workshops. The atmosphere was friendly and relaxed, mainly

thanks to our experienced microscope master Pavel Kejzlar. Pavel, already known to you from previous events, is always prompt and witty, making the workshops fly by. His lovely assistant Míša Petržílková also contributed to a pleasant atmosphere of both workshops.

I believe everyone enjoyed their time with us, and I hope that our future events, which we plan together with our German partners as part of the InterBridge project, will attract more visitors from both the Czech Republic and Germany.

Hana Křížová

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