News

Kicking off the new VILLUM RESEARCH STATION at Station North – a joint venture between Aarhus University and the Greenland Home Rule Government. The VILLUM FOUNDATION has donated DKK 70 million to the new research facilities, which are expected to open in 2014. They will form one of the most advanced Arctic research stations in the world, providing knowledge about the impact of climate change on the Arctic. Pictured from left are: Rector Lauritz B. Holm-Nielsen, Aarhus University, Greenland’s Minister for Education, Research and Nordic Affairs Nick Nielsen, HRH Crown Prince Frederik, Senior Scientist Henrik Skov, Aarhus University, Denmark’s Minister for Science, Innovation and Higher Education Morten Østergaard, and Chairman of the Board Lars Erik Kann-Rasmussen, VILLUM FOUNDATION.
HRH Crown Prince Frederik and Rector Lauritz B. Holm-Nielsen, Aarhus University.

2013.06.29 |

Crown Prince kicks off new research venture in the Arctic

Just 800 kilometres from the North Pole, Aarhus University scientists are establishing Station North – now one of the most advanced Arctic research stations in the world – supported by a grant of DKK 70 million from the VILLUM FOUNDATION.

When rivers erode mountains, it is not only the water that is responsible for the erosion. The sediment in the water plays a crucial role. This is demonstrated in a new model developed by researchers at Aarhus University. This photo shows the Manaraga mountain river in the Yugyd Va National Park, located in the Ural Mountains – a 2,500-kilometre-long mountain range in Western Russia and one of the oldest in the world. (Photo: iStockphoto/FokinOl)

2013.06.27 |

New model solves the puzzle about age-old mountains

Researchers have long been wondering about the fact that some of the world’s largest and oldest mountain ranges continue to tower above the landscape millions of years – according to existing theories – after they should have been worn down to the ground. A new model developed by Aarhus University researchers provides an explanation.

Oystercatcher and red knot in the Wadden Sea. Here you can experience unique numbers of waders gorging on food. Photo: Klaus Melbye, Wadden Sea Centre

2013.06.26 |

Spend the summer getting more familiar with the Danish countryside

Becoming better acquainted with the Danish countryside is a good way to spend your summer holidays. Four of Aarhus University’s researchers provide tips below (in Danish only). There are loads of opportunities to think about nature, find answers, and have a great experience.

Professor Niels Chr. Nielsen, currently head of the internationally recognised iNANO research centre, is the new dean of the Faculty of Science and Technology at Aarhus University. He will officially assume his new role on 6 August.

2013.06.25 |

New Dean of Science and Technology at Aarhus University announced

Professor Niels Christian Nielsen will become the next Dean of Aarhus University's main academic area Science and Technology. As dean, Professor Nielsen will join the university’s Senior Management Team.

When the climate gets warmer, butterflies move further towards the cooler latitudes of the north. This is an example of the small copper butterfly.
Here is a marsh fritillary butterfly.
Two black-veined white butterflies mating.

2013.06.25 |

Climate changes cause butterflies to migrate northwards

Butterflies are one of the species that manage to adapt to climate change. When the temperature rises, butterflies leave their habitat and migrate northwards. This is evident in a PhD project currently being carried out at Aarhus University,

2013.06.21 |

Art and science combined at the Steno Museum

Sound, images and pure knowledge were brought together in the premiere of Marine Plants, a new audiovisual installation on display at the Steno Museum for the next three months.

Pictured here is a microhabitat in the coastal zone. The yellow spot on the large snail is another snail feeding on microalgae that grow on the snail’s shell. In the meantime, the large snail is grazing on seaweed. 
Parasites can choose many routes up the food chain. Shown here is the larval stage of a parasite (fluke) that uses the snail as its first intermediate host. The larva leaves the snail to look for a fish – e.g. a stickleback or cod – to bury itself in. Here it waits to be eaten by a seabird, which is the parasite’s definitive host.
Here is an example of a food web from Estero de Punta Banda in Mexico. The image shows a network with 4,671 food connections between 68 parasites and 117 free-living species. The blue dots are the parasites. The red dots are free-living organisms, some of which digest the parasites when they eat the host animal, and others act as hosts for the parasites. The green dots are plant species that a number of the free-living species graze on.

2013.06.19 |

Parasites provide insight into the stability of ecosystems

A research project with the participation of Aarhus University has now shown how parasites contribute to the complexity of an ecosystem. This provides better understanding of the stability of the ecosystems. In this project, the researchers analysed the importance of the parasites for the structure of the food web, with a starting point in seven…

In The Quantum Computer Game launched today, you have to try to move atoms past some obstacles without them sloshing over. The researchers can use the results to develop the supercomputer of the future.
Jacob Sherson is responsible for the project and he is using the participation of ordinary people playing a computer game to develop a quantum computer.

2013.06.19 |

Play a computer game and help a researcher

The computer of the future is based on advanced quantum mechanics, which can cause furrowed brows for even the brightest brains and make their hair turn grey. However, a new computer game developed by researchers at Aarhus University now makes use of the brains of ordinary people to speed up the development of the quantum computer.

Aarhus University researchers carried out a test flight with a drone above the Nørreådalen river valley near Viborg. They will develop a method to monitor wildlife and solve the problem of the large number of animals run over in areas of farmland each year. (Photo: Rasmus Nyholm Jørgensen, AU)

2013.06.18 |

Drone spots wildlife in the fields

Drones, cameras and algorithms will be used to reduce the number of animals run over in areas of farmland. Researchers at Aarhus University are responsible for a project with great prospects for both animals and farmers. Read more (in Danish only) here.

The sea contains many calcareous organisms. Mussels are the most important of these in Danish waters. Photo: Jens Larsen, AU

2013.06.18 |

New paradigm – acidification in coastal waters is mainly controlled by the hinterland

Researchers are concerned that the atmosphere’s increasing level of carbon dioxide will lead to a gradual acidification of the great oceans. However, acidification in coastal waters is largely a local phenomenon that is controlled by the nutrient content. This is described in a new international study in which Aarhus University took part.

Pictured here is the little deer mouse that inhabits the USA. Some strains of the mouse species have developed an improved ability to absorb oxygen in the blood and they have adapted to a life high up in the mountains, where most other animals would suffer from oxygen deficiency. Researchers have now discovered that this development is made possible by a complex interaction of gene mutations.

2013.06.17 |

Scientists demonstrate that evolution is a complex magnitude

The development of a particular genetic property depends on a complex interaction between different gene mutations. Danish researchers have now demonstrated this in collaboration with American colleagues. They studied how mutations in the protein haemoglobin make it possible for the small species of mouse Peromyscus maniculatus (deer…

When researchers want to find out what the vegetation was like at a certain time in history, they study samples taken from the bottom of lakes for the incidence of substances such as pollen. Shown here is a rare case with a very large amount of pollen in a geological deposit. (Photo: Bent Odgaard)

2013.06.12 |

Pollen reveals new interglacial period

Thousands of allergy sufferers are affected every year by the microscopic plant dust that fills the air when the flora wake from their winter hibernation. An Aarhus University researcher can now thank pollen for the remarkable discovery of a previously unknown interglacial period. Read more (in Danish only) here.

2013.06.07 |

Three Science and Technology researchers awarded Sapere Aude grants

The Danish Council for Independent Research (DFF) has just awarded research funds as part of the Sapere Aude research career programme, and Science and Technology, Aarhus University, is represented with three researchers.

Flowers and insects are mutually dependent on each other. Changes to the flowering periods now mean fewer insects in the Arctic. (Photo: Toke Thomas Høye)

2013.06.04 |

Climate changes to blame for fewer insects in the Arctic

The warmer climate in the Arctic has resulted in plants flowering earlier than previously and for a shorter period of time overall. This has caused a shift in the period when insect pollinators are present. Aarhus University researchers can now demonstrate that this development means the number of some species of insect pollinators has been halved…

2013.06.04 |

The art of getting a five-metre-long bottle to bob on the water

Visitors to the Sculpture by the Sea exhibition in Aarhus can hardly avoid noticing one of the exhibits in particular – an impressive, oversized message in a bottle floating 50 metres offshore. Two engineering students are responsible for the extensive calculations required to turn science into art. Read more (in Danish only) here.