Who we are

The Materials Chain research network brings together materials scientists from the three major universities in the Ruhr Area, TU Dortmund University, Ruhr-Universität Bochum and the University of Duisburg-Essen. Using the potential of the Ruhr Area, the UA Ruhr universities do not only collaborate among themselves: Scientists from external research institutes like the Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung Düsseldorf, the Max-Planck-Institut für chemische Energiekonversion, the Max-Planck Institut für Kohlenforschung at Mülheim, and the Forschungszentrum Jülich are members of the Materials Chain.

UA Ruhr Universities

Partner Institutions

The core of the Materials Chain network are its over 260 members: Scientists from various fields of materials-related research group within the UA Ruhr.

Learn more


Click on a unit’s name to find out more
about the organizational structures of
the Materials Chain research network.

The Materials Chain flagship program is encouraged by the UA Ruhr and the universities’ rectorates. Their top-down support strengthens the network’s position in the inter-university environment.

Vice Rectors UA Ruhr Representative
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Andreas Ostendorf
Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Prof. Dr. Gabriele Sadowski
TU Dortmund
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jörg Schröder
Universität Duisburg-Essen
Dr. Hans Stallmann
UAR Coordinator

The group of scientific coordinators figures as advocacy of the flagship program and provides high-quality scientific and organizational support.

Prof. Dr. Axel Lorke Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Tillmann Prof. Dr. Ralf Drautz
Dr. Marion Franke Dr. Ingor Baumann Dr. Manuel Piacenza

The Scientific Board of the Materials Chain supports the Scientific Coordinators with its expertise from the different fields of research. Its members are established materials scientists from several faculties at the three UA Ruhr universities.

  • Stephan Barcikowski, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Gunther Eggeler, Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  • Michael Farle, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Alfred Ludwig, Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  • Doru Lupascu, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Jörn Mosler, TU Dortmund University
  • Rossitza Pentcheva, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Roland Schmechel, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Christof Schulz, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Markus Stommel, TU Dortmund University
  • Jörg Tiller, TU Dortmund University
  • Metin Tolan, TU Dortmund University
  • Andreas Wieck, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

At the center of the Materials Chain are the scientists working and collaborating within our network. Klick here to learn more about the individual members of the Materials Chain.

The UA Ruhr is an alliance between Ruhr-Universität Bochum, TU Dortmund University, and the University of Duisburg-Essen, the three largest universities in Germany’s thriving Ruhr Area and figures as the foundation of the Materials Chain network. All three universities believe in the benefits of collaboration on all levels of scholarship and research, which is one of the reasons they came together in this unique alliance.

In our strive towards an outstanding joint research performance that further strengthens the position of the Ruhr Area as an internationally leading region of materials science, the Materials Chain research network is always open for new collaborations with interested partners from academia and industry. 

Information on our application requirements can be found here.


The Ruhr Area: A Region of Materials Science

Ever since the industrial revolution, the introduction of new materials has been a substantial part of the Ruhr Area’s rich history. Highly innovative products from the Ruhr Area, like seamless railway tires, stainless steels or carbides functioned as growth engines for all of Germany.

The success story of automobile manufacturing in Germany, which continues to this day, can ultimately be traced back to the developments of the materials and metalworking industry and hence to the Ruhr Area.

The tradition-rich focus on materials and technology is still shaping the Ruhr Area’s industrial and academic landscape today. The region is not only home base to numerous leading research institutions and industrial companies with a materials-scientific setting of priorities but also to the three universities of the University Alliance Ruhr, who excel in materials science traditionally.


During the last decades, research progress and specialisation led to a fragmentation of the field of materials science and technology into many sub-disciplines. This is mirrored in the highly-specific and internationally well-recognized research activities at the three UA Ruhr universities and their partner institutions, covering most of the areas and sub-disciplines of the now broad field.

From basic research on materials to applied technology, from the discovery of new materials to their production and from the fundamental description of materials on the atomic scale to the properties of technical components, a multitude of specialized researchers strengthen the position of the Ruhr Area as a worldwide leading region in materials science and technology.


While specialisation is necessary for maintaining an internationally competitive position, it brings a separation of research topics and education that may have an adverse impact on the effectiveness of research on new materials and their path from discovery to implementation into technical components. Therefore, the Materials Chain initiative brings the sub-disciplines of materials science into dialogue, giving the field momentum for a more effective management of its shared resources.

In an holistic approach to materials science, the Materials Chain makes use of the unique scientific environment presented by the Ruhr Area and the University Alliance Ruhr in order to reach a complete and concise description of the whole materials chain from atoms to finished technical components and vice versa.


Contact and Project Management


Pia Aleithe
ICAMS – Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Universitätsstr. 150
44801 Bochum
Building/room IC 02/501
Phone: +49-(0)234-32-29919
Email: pia.aleithe@materials-chain.ruhr


Alexander Heinemann
CENIDE – Universität Duisburg-Essen
Carl-Benz-Str. 199
47057 Duisburg
Phone: +49-(0)203 379 8175
Email: alexander.heinemann@materials-chain.ruhr