Sunday, 2 December 2007

Berlin interview 3: Dietmar Kennepohl - Web-based Chemistry Labs

Prof. Dietmar Kennepohl of Canada's Athabasca University (their Open University) presented examples of the web-based interface that they use to allow students to access chemistry instrumentation for sample analysis. Essentially, the student can take full control of the equipment from anywhere and at anytime that suits them. Of course the equipment is preloaded with a number of different sample materials from analysis, some of which will have been sent in to the lab by the students concerned. Such remote access to labs has been growing internationally in a range of technical subjects including Electrical Engineering (indeed our own Vice-President, Ger Hurley, published a paper on this topic last year) and Astronomy. MIT has also been pursuing the development of a comprehensive network of such equipment from many institutions across the globe as part of their iLab project. I spoke briefly with Dietmar about his work.

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