Solutions to turn our city attractive have been featured in 14 pavilions.

It has something of chemistry, something of physics. It has games, workshops and many more for the visitors to learn about turning our cities into attractive places to reside. The Indo-German Urban Mela, at YMCA college grounds, Nandanam, which ends today, is a unique travelling exhibition which began on August 24. With the focus on ‘CitySpaces,’ institutions of the project such as Bajaj Allianz, BASF, Bosch, Deutsche Bank, Siemens and the Federal Minitry of Education and Research, Lapp India and Volkswagen, among others have given interactive solutions related to the exposition. The companies had put up experiments, posters and charts in 14 theatrical pavilions. With young volunteers around it is easy to understand the concepts.

In the Federal Ministry of Education and Research pavilion, 12 German universities have displayed information about the courses they offer, scholarship, funding and exchange programmes. The Helmholtz Association a community of 18 scientific-technical and biological medical research centres have given a feel of the kind of research they are into. Working model of a solar hydrogen system has been set up by University of Gottingen. Other models at the pavilion include a diffusion cloud chamber and a magnetic-levitation train.

The Kids’ Lab featured as part of the chemistry education programme at the BASF pavilion is another interesting feature. The lab focuses on water. The ‘Water Purification’ experiment educates children on how to remove solid and dissolved particles from water.

Water Storage experiment

The ‘Water Storage’ experiment helps students to learn about suitable techniques of water conservation. Other experiments include ‘Liquid Concrete and Lotus Effect’. While the former will educate the kids on how hard concrete can be made liquid and improve flowusing special properties of a super plasticiser the latter will explain how innovative textile chemicals can help to keep children’s clothes stain-free. Apart from the Kids’ Lab, the pavilion has options for energy-efficient housing, eco-friendly paints and bio-degradable packaging.

The workshop —Waste Matters — for children run at the Goethe Studio pavilion is a sought after feature of the Mela. Through simple activities, experiments and video clips from Germany and India, the workshop introduces children to the concept of organic and inorganic natural cycles and decompositions in a simple way. There are also a lot of ‘Do-it-yourself’ demos towards the end of the workshop.

The pavilion by Deutsche Bank throws light on sustainable urbanisation.

The Windowfarms project shows how plants can be grown in a vertical hydroponic system in a window.

The project uses baked clay pellets, nutrient mixed water and LED light (to bring in the effect of sunlight) to support the plants. The pavilion also offers inspiring ideas about lighting up lives with solar powered lanterns, a revolutionary air craft (powered solely by the sun) and low-cost housing projects.

Besides these the mela also offers fun, games and dance today. There will be a student exchange programme at the conference pavilion between 1 and 3 p.m.

The Goethe Studio pavilion will have a theatrical creative movement session involving kids with Andrea Jacobs.

At 7. 30 p.m. there will be a grand musical finale to the Mela at Centre Stage. A 70-member choir of the Madras Musical Association will bid farewell to the 10-ten extravaganza.

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