The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has awarded the Gay Lussac Humboldt Research Award, worth 60,000 EUR, to Prof. Dr. Jérôme Casas. The Swiss entomologist will be visiting the University of Freiburg in 2021. Together with his host, Prof. Dr. Thomas Speck, Director of the Freiburg Botanical Garden and spokesperson of the livMatS cluster of the University of Freiburg, he will conduct research on bioinspired materials and sensors and their technological counterparts. Casas will also pursue this question at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Postdam with his host Prof. Dr. Peter Fratzl, where he will also be a guest scientist.
Casas is considered a leading biologist in the field of sensory properties of insects. His knowledge of the structure and function of insect sensors can be transferred to mechanical sensors and actuators. "This enables us to combine our knowledge on sensing and decision making in carnivorous plants here in Freiburg with Jérôme Casas’ expertise in sensing systems in insects", says Speck. "Our goal is to abstract and transfer this knowledge to a novel generation of smart interactive soft machines as we develop them in livMatS."
Casas is Professor of Ecology at the french University of Tours, leading member of the "Institut Universitaire de France" and specialist in the field of bioinspired technology. He is also editor in chief of the journal "Current Opinion in Insect Science", which ranks third in the field of entomology.
With this award, the Humboldt Foundation honors researchers whose fundamental discoveries, insights or new theories have had a lasting impact on their own discipline and from whom further outstanding achievements can be expected in the future.
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