From Academic Kids

This article refers to the German town of Jena. For the battle refer to Battle of Jena-Auerstedt and for the town in the United States refer to Jena, Louisiana.
Map of Germany showing Jena
Map of Germany showing Jena

Jena is a town in central Germany on the River Saale. With a population of 101,325 (as of 30 June 2003) it is the third biggest town in the federal state of Thuringia.



Jena was first mentioned in 1236 and developed as a market town up until the foundation of the university in 1558.

On 14 October 1806 Napoleon fought and defeated the Prussian army here in the Battle of Jena-Auerstadt.

In 1945, towards the end of World War II, Jena was heavily bombed by the American and British allies. 153 people were killed and most of the medieval town centre was destroyed.


Today Jena is a manufacturing city, specializing in precision machinery, pharmaceuticals, optics and photographic equipment, and is home to the famous Zeiss optics plant. In 1926 the world's first modern planetarium was built by the Zeiss company in the Damenviertel district of the town.

In 1846 engineer Carl Zeiss founded the Zeiss Works for Precision Engineering and Optical Products in Jena. The company was taken over in 1889 by the physicist and former professor at the University of Jena, Ernst Abbe. Together with Ernst Schott Ernst Abbe had also founded the “Jenaer Glaswerk Schott & Genossen” in 1884. The new glass production methods with defined optical features/characteristics revolutionised optics and were the beginning of instrument manufacturing in the region at the same time. In 1950 research and industry again formed a seminal symbiosis when the Schott Zeiss Institute of Microbiology became the “Jenapharm” company. As recently as 1942 the Jena doctor and microbiologist Dr. Hans Knll was the first person on the European continent to succeed in developing a process for producing penicillin. The company then concentrated on hormones, and Jenapharm became a leading producer of the contraceptive pill and of other hormone preparations. Interdisciplinary strengths can also be found in the Thuringian bio-instrument concept, which describes a regional concept unique in the world. Bio-instruments are biological instruments, i. e. bio-molecules (including nucleic acids, proteins and lipids), cells, tissue etc. a well as instruments for use in biotechnology such as dyes, sensors, biochips, detection equipment or screening machines for looking for active ingredients. The Thuringian bio-instrument cluster links traditional technical and scientific strengths – in optics, instrument engineering and mechatronics particularly – with applications in the modern life sciences (medicine, biology and bio-technology). This approach also convinced an international jury in the 1996 BioRegio Competition organised by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, which awarded the Bioregion Jena with a special prize together with special financial assistance for over 30 industry-related research projects. However, the applicants had to provide a minimum of the same amount themselves from private or other sources – from venture capital, for example – which mobilised new kinds of economic forces and stimulated the economic, social and scientific structure of the whole region. The implementation of the bio-instrument concept unleashed a bio-technology start-up boom in Thuringia. The bio-instrument cluster in Thuringia now consists of some 60 core bio-tech companies, some 25 medical technology companies, 23 research and public facilities, three pharmaceutical companies, powerful investors and sector-related service companies. It occupies a key position in the development of a dynamic, efficient and innovative network in the border area between engineering and the life sciences. Thuringia currently has three Max Planck Institutes, two Leibniz Institutes and numerous other internationally recognised research centres. An ultramodern bio-instrument centre was built on the Beutenberg Campus in Jena, four companies with a bio-instrument profile have successfully entered the share market and numerous scientific and business delegations visit the location regularly. The network now develops and sells items such as machines that seek out new active substances, state-of-the-art bio-chips for quick and precise diagnoses, new types of dyes for innovative detection processes in the human body, anti-cancer drugs activated by light, microscopic reaction chambers or laser scalpels that can cut into living cells, mostly for export. The young biotechnology companies and the established pharmaceuticals and medical technology companies cooperate not only with each other; they also do a lot of work with regional research centres and other companies in the region, especially optics companies, precision engineering companies, public organisations or with finance institutes. A tightly-knit technology-oriented network has developed which has made a considerable contribution to the professionalisation and rationalisation of the sector. Since 1995 the network has been coordinated by the BioRegio Jena e. V. BioInstruments (, a non-profit organisation whose object is to assist science and business in the life sciences in Thuringia. To this end it offers comprehensive information, organises events, designs the continued development of the concept, assists companies and start-ups in financing their ideas and initiates new issues. Thuringia has since succeeded – with the help of all involved – in entering the “national league” of Europe’s biotechnology regions. In 2001 Jena – arguably the smallest region and with the fewest people – was placed tenth of all European biotechnology locations by an international study. Over the last few years numerous newly-founded firms, scientific, science-related companies and service companies have established presences around Thuringia’s world-renowned research centres and innovative companies, which together, all form a tightly-woven cooperative network which develops, produces and sells innovative products for international markets. This potential is particularly visible at the Beutenberg Campus in Jena and the Technologie Campus in Ilmenau, where research facilities of the Max Planck Institute, Leibniz Institute or Fraunhofer Society as well as state-owned research institutes in close proximity to start-up centres and alreadyestablished companies are located. As soon as the companies have grown out of the favourable startup environment there, they will find ideal opportunities for development in the nearby industrial parks, where they can continue to expand.


Colleges and universities

  • In 1794 the poets Goethe and Schiller met at the university and established a long lasting friendship.
  • The University of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschule Jena) was founded in 1990.

External links

de:Jena es:Jena eo:Jena fr:Ina id:Jena it:Jena nl:Jena ja:イェーナ no:Jena pl:Jena sv:Jena zh:耶拿


Academic Kids Menu

  • Art and Cultures
    • Art (
    • Architecture (
    • Cultures (
    • Music (
    • Musical Instruments (
  • Biographies (
  • Clipart (
  • Geography (
    • Countries of the World (
    • Maps (
    • Flags (
    • Continents (
  • History (
    • Ancient Civilizations (
    • Industrial Revolution (
    • Middle Ages (
    • Prehistory (
    • Renaissance (
    • Timelines (
    • United States (
    • Wars (
    • World History (
  • Human Body (
  • Mathematics (
  • Reference (
  • Science (
    • Animals (
    • Aviation (
    • Dinosaurs (
    • Earth (
    • Inventions (
    • Physical Science (
    • Plants (
    • Scientists (
  • Social Studies (
    • Anthropology (
    • Economics (
    • Government (
    • Religion (
    • Holidays (
  • Space and Astronomy
    • Solar System (
    • Planets (
  • Sports (
  • Timelines (
  • Weather (
  • US States (


  • Home Page (
  • Contact Us (

  • Clip Art (
Personal tools