To bring chemists and engineers together
for fruitful cooperation.

Max Buchner, 1918


"To bring chemists and engineers together for fruitful cooperation" – that was the great idea of the brilliant mind behind ACHEMA. When Max Buchner came up with the idea for the exhibition in 1918, chemistry and engineering were strictly separated disciplines.

From the very beginning ACHEMA was characterized by forward-looking ideas. And even today we have our sights firmly set on future opportunities and challenges.

Travel with us through 100 years of ACHEMA history!

  • 1920
  • 1920

    The humble beginnings

    At the first ACHEMA 75 companies exhibit on 560 m².

  • 1930
  • Becoming international

    Exhibitors from UK, France, Netherlands, Norway, Austria, Switzerland, Hungary and the United States take part in ACHEMA for the first time.

  • 1950
  • 1950

    The first post-war ACHEMA

    takes place in Frankfurt/Main, which has been its home ever since. The "Festhalle" with its characteristic dome shape is one of the exhibition halls at ACHEMA 1950.

  • Post-war boom

    "ACHEMA's importance is expressed by its steady growth" is the message of this postcard from 1952. The number of exhibitors increases to 570 on an area of more than 16,000 m².

  • 1955

    Meet your friends

    Socializing has always been an integral part of ACHEMA. In the 1950s this means a festive banquet for exhibitors with interludes featuring dancers.

  • New energy

    The blooming field of nuclear science becomes part of the show and will stay until 1988 . The picture shows the booth of the UK Atomic Energy Authority.

  • 1960
  • 1961

    Focal topics

    Automation in the laboratory and on the shop floor is featured prominently at ACHEMA 1961. The exhibit shows "inductive control devices for contactless process control"

  • Getting around

    ACHEMA 1967 is large enough to establish a shuttle bus route with the "ACHEMA courier".

  • 1970
  • 1973


    Attending the ladies program is not for these professionals who prefer to inspect the latest in laboratory glassware.

  • Open air exhibits

    Analytics are becoming increasingly mobile in 1976. "Measuring, controlling, registering" it says on the vehicle

  • 1979

    International relations

    India day has been a tradition at ACHEMA since 1979 which continues until today.

  • 1980
  • A new addition

    The newly developing field of biotechnology uses much the same apparatus as the chemical industry. This bioreactor with process control module is shown at ACHEMA 1982.

  • 1985

    Pomp and circumstance

    Opening ACHEMA with the ouverture from Richard Wagners opera “Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg” played live by an orchestra is a tradition well into the 2000s.

  • 1990
  • Icons of ACHEMA

    The Messeturm skyscraper ("trade fair tower") is completed in 1991. It isn't part of any trade show, but it makes for an iconic backdrop ever since and still is among the tallest buildings in Europe.

  • 1994


    There's no ACHEMA without several hundred presentations and some high-profile panel discussions. In 1994 the topic is PVC - a sustainable material.

  • Space oddity

    In 1997 the first Mars rover "Sojourner" succeeds in sending data to planet earth and a model of the robotic vehicle makes it to ACHEMA.

  • 2000
  • 2000


    It's never too early to introduce the younger generation to current technology.

  • Formula 1

    Motor sports is at it's peak in 2003 and current trends are always reflected in ACHEMA exhibits.

  • 2006

    Expect the unexpected

    ACHEMA is always good for a surprise. In 2006 you would have even found an MRT for guinea pigs.

  • Taking control

    Process control is as important as the stirred tank reactor in 2009.

  • 2010
  • 2012

    Seeing with your hands

    To stand out among more than 3,000 exhibitors, you have to be creative. Visitors love to engange with hands-on exhibits at ACHEMA 2012.

  • Size matters

    Every ACHEMA is always a competition for the largest exhibit, too. This butterfly valve at ACHEMA 2015 makes the term "industrial size" tangible.

  • 2018

    Mission accomplished

    A chemist and an engineer discussing hot topics for sustainable chemistry innovation in 2018. Max Buchner would have approved of this "fruitful cooperation".

  • 2020
  • New impetus in challenging times

    We are looking forward to meeting you at ACHEMA 2022!