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The Data Harvest: How sharing research data can yield knowledge, jobs and growth

In October 2010, the High Level Group on Scientific Data presented the "Riding the Wave,” report to the European Commission outlining a series of policy recommendations on how Europe could gain from the rising tide of scientific data. Over 4 years later, a team of European experts have generated this new report to outline how Europe must act now to secure it’s standing in future data markets. It offers recommendations to European policy makers while outlining the benefits and challenges.

The report will be officially launched at the Research Data Alliance and global Data and Computing e-Infrastructure challenges event, Rome 11 December 2014 and many of the topics covered in the report are part of the agenda.


Cosmological standard candles not standard anymore?

15 September 2014

Photo of supernova
Galaxy M82 in which the supernova
exploded Credit: NASA, ESA,
& Hubble Heritage

A study, carried out in the framework of the RadioNet3 project, discards the possibility that the progenitor of the type Ia SN 2014J might have stemmed from the explosions of a white dwarf nourished by a normal star. Were these conclusions to become generalized, the use of type Ia supernovae “cosmological standard candles” might need to be revised.

See Press release in English  PDF icon 186 KB


RadioNet3 supported radio astronomers team observed the initial conditions of massive star formation

2 July 2014

Photo of the IRAM Telescope
30-m IRAM telescope (Pico Veleta, Spain)
© Nicolas Billot

Massive stars are responsible not only for some of the most spectacular phenomena in the Universe, but also for the production of heavy elements, key for the origin of life. An international team of astronomers has recently used the transnational access to the 30m telescope of the Institut de Radioastronomie Millimétrique (IRAM) in Spain to observe one of the darkest, densest and most quiescent molecular cloud in our Galaxy, where massive stars are in the making.

The cloud is cold, massive, and shows a complex structure with several filaments. The detailed analysis suggests that the filaments’ kinematics are governed by the global collapse of the cloud.

The team has proposed that the filaments likely formed at the initial stages of the cloud’s collapse and, as the collapse proceeds, the filaments converge and collide one onto another. As a result of the collision, the most massive condensations in the cloud were formed exactly at the locations where the filaments intersect. These condensations, or ‘cores’, are 100 times more massive than the Sun, and represent the progenitors of massive stars.


Third pillar of ELI in Hungary gets the go ahead

10 May 2014

Illustration of the building

On 8th May 2014, the European Commission has approved an investment of € 111 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) for the building of the third part of the cutting edge pan-European Laser research hub ELI, Extreme Light Infrastructure. The project, which uses super-short laser pulses, involves the installation of state-of-the art technology at the facility to be built near the University of Szeged in Hungary. The two first facilities of this pioneering European research consortium are currently being built in the Czech Republic and Romania and are expected to be completed at the end of 2015.

The Commission decision approves the ERDF contribution for the 1st phase of the ELI-ALPS facility under the programming period 2007-2013. The total costs of the project (including national contribution) amount to €130.5 million. The second phase of this project concerning the instalment of the scientific technology will be financed by the EU during the 2014-2020 programming period. The research hub is expected to have its full research capacity by 2018.


ELI Delivery Consortium

Australia and EU agree to collaborate on health research infrastructure

8 May 2014

Photo from the event

On 8 May, formal collaboration agreements were signed between Australian and European research infrastructure projects in the areas of translational research, clinical trials and imaging. The signing of these agreements is an important development following the third European Union - Australia Workshop on Research Infrastructure, held in Melbourne in November 2013.

Australia’s National Imaging Facility (NIF) and Therapeutic Innovation Australian (TIA) have successfully developed agreements to collaborate with European research infrastructure partners EuroBioimaging, ECRIN, EATRIS and EU Openscreen.

Nicola Gordon-Smith, Deputy Head of Mission to Belgium, and Dr Octavi Quintana Trias, principal adviser at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation welcomed the European and Australian contingents and congratulated the project leaders on having so quickly agreed that they can work together across a number of important areas.

InGRID: launch of transnational access calls to 13 data centers specialised in poverty, work and social policy

October 2013

InGRID is funded under the European Commission’s 7th Framework Programme (from 2013 to 2017) and involves 17 European partners. Referring to the EU2020-ambition of Inclusive Growth, the general objectives of InGRID are to integrate and to innovate existing European social sciences research infrastructures on Poverty and Living Conditions and Working Conditions and Vulnerability by providing transnational data access, organising mutual knowledge exchange activities and improving methods and tools for comparative research. This integration will provide the European scientific community with new and better opportunities to fulfil its key role in the development of evidence-based European policies for Inclusive Growth. In this regard specific attention is paid to a better measurement of related state policies, to high-performance statistical quality management, and to dissemination/outreach activities with the broader stakeholder community-of-interest, including European politics, civil society and statistical system. A better measurement and understanding of vulnerable groups is the common and shared expected impact of this integrated research infrastructure.

Colin Carlile receives Royal Order of the Polar Star for bringing ESS to Sweden

28 June 2013

Colin Carlile received today the Royal Swedish Order of the Polar Star for the achievement of bringing the European Spallation Source project to Sweden. Colin Carlile led the ESS project until February this year, and is today driving the scientific development of Science Village Scandinavia.
At a ceremony, held in the government offices at Rosenbad, in Stockholm, Colin Carlile was presented with the insignia of the Royal Order of the Polar Star by Jan Björklund, Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden. Colin Carlile came to Lund in 2006 following his role as Director of the Institute Laue-Langevin in Grenoble with the goal of bringing the ESS to Sweden. This was achieved in May 2009 together with Allan Larsson after a long and determined campaign. Colin Carlile stepped down from the position as Director-General for ESS after the delivery of all the promised Pre-Construction documentation to the 17 ESS Partner Countries. The ESS is one of the major European Infrastructure projects that are part of the ESFRI roadmap.

Science Village press release
More information on ESS

High power lasers

6 June 2013

Nuclear simulation, radiation therapy, particle physics: the applications of high power lasers are multiple. Researchers from laboratories in France, United-Kingdom, Germany, US, Russia, Japan and from CERN are studying a new laser design made of optical fibres. The ICAN laser will use optical fibres to produce high average powers very efficiently. The EU granted ICAN, the International Coherent Amplification Network, €0.5 million. The ICAN project is coordinated by the Ecole polytechnique, Palaiseau, France. It will hold its first phase closure Conference end of June 2013.
More information in Le Monde

European Commission and CERN support Jordan synchrotron SESAME

29 May 2013

Inside SESAME main hall May 2012

On 28 May, the European Commission and CERN have agreed to support the construction of SESAME, one of the most ambitious research facilities in the Middle East. SESAME, a synchrotron light source, will allow researchers from the region to investigate the properties of advanced materials, biological processes and cultural artefacts. SESAME is a unique joint venture based in Jordan that brings together scientists from its members Bahrain, Cyprus, Egypt, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Pakistan, the Palestinian Authority and Turkey. Alongside its scientific aims, the project will also contribute to the promotion of peace in the region through scientific cooperation.
The Commission will contribute €5 million to the CESSAMAG project, allowing CERN, working with SESAME, to supply magnets for a brand new electron storage ring - the heart of the facility. This will pave the way for SESAME to begin commissioning in 2015.

More information :

German National Roadmap for Research Infrastructures

29 April 2013

The German Federal Ministry for Education and Research announced today the publication of its Research Infrastructures Roadmap, based on an evaluation performed by the Wissenschaftsrat, the German Council of Science and Humanities. The list entails 24 projects from a large range of scientific fields that are already under implementation. Three new projects have been included: CTA - Cherenkov-Telescope-Array, EU-OPENSCREEN - the European Infrastructure of Open Screening Platforms for chemical biology, and IAGOS - In Service Aircraft for a Global Observing System, which the German federal government intends to fund in principle.

This is the first time a Research Infrastructure Roadmap is published by the Research Ministry. It now invites all German science organisations to discuss whether and how the present pilot phase for the creation of a roadmap should be extended, and whether a standardised procedure should be established.

More information

Existence of two new transiting extrasolar planets confirmed

April 24, 2013

An artist's impression of a giant planet close
to one of the stars © Ricardo Reis, CAUP

A European team has used the FP7 OPTICON trans-national access programme to confirm the existence of two large planets orbiting stars beyond our Sun. The possibility of the planets was highlighted by the Kepler space mission, but their existence needed to be confirmed. This is best done by ground based observations using very precise spectrographs which can detect the tiny wobbles caused by the tug of the planets on their host stars. A new spectrograph called HARPS-North, which is ideally suited to such measurements, has recently been installed at the Italian Telescopio Nazionale Galileo in La Palma, Spain. A team led by French astronomer Guillaume Hébrard won time on the Italian telescope via the FP7 OPTICON time allocation process and combined the data with that from the instrument SOPHIE on the French Observatoire de Haute-Provence telescope to confirm the existence of the planets and estimate their size and mass. According to the team 'These results illustrate the benefits that could be obtained from joint studies using two spectrographs such as as SOPHIE and HARPS-N'.

More information :
Press release, Institut d'astrophysique de Paris
Opticon factsheet  PDF icon 5.1 MB

The three telescopes involved in the discovery, the Kepler satellite, the French OHP 1.9m telescope and the Italian 3.5m Telescopio Nazionale Galileo in La Palma,

ELI-DC International Association

April 11, 2013

The Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI), the world's first international user facility for laser research, has been established today as an International Association in Brussels, Belgium. ELI is part of the ESFRI Roadmap for research infrastructures of high priority for Europe. Based on strong international collaborations it is being constructed in three pillars in the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Romania, utilizing EU Structural Funds.

The newly founded ELI Delivery Consortium International Association is a non-profit organisation after Belgian law (AISBL). It will promote the sustainable development of ELI as a pan-European research infrastructure, support the coordinated implementation of the ELI research facilities, and preserve the consistency and complementarity of their scientific missions. It will also organise the establishment of an international consortium that will be in charge of the future operation of ELI, preferably in the form of a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC).

More information: ELI webpage
Contact person: Florian Gliksohn, ELI International affairs

Visions of our moody Sun

January 21, 2013

What causes the violent explosions that rocket the Sun and put our communication systems at risk? How do its misterious magnetic fields behave? The Sun´s complex physics dynamic still puzzles researchers. And today´s biggest terrestrial solar telescopes are simply not enough to understand our star´s elusive mood. That is why European astrophysicists have a dream: A new 4 meter solar telescope equipped with some unique patters, including an «adaptative optical system » that will correct in real-time the deformations induced by the atmosphere in the astrophysicst´s readings of the Sun". The new European Solar Telescope will be installed in Canary Islands around 2020, but researchers are already working on its complex design. The European Commission supported the EST Design project with €3,2 million.

Euronews: FUTURIS
Location: Tenerife, Spain

More information: EST, The Large Aperture European Solar Telescope,

Exploring public attitudes, informing public policy in Europe

Conference, Nicosia, 23-25 November 2012

On November 23, the European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, Máire Geoghegan-Quinn addressed the ESS Conference that took place under the auspices of Cyprus Presidency of the European Union, in Nicosia. This three-day Conference offered an excellent opportunity for delegates and researchers to present and discuss the results of the European Social Survey. Migration, political participation, inequalities, responses to Europe's economic crisis - these are few of the topics that were discussed. To face the societal challenges we need to design appropriate social and economic policies that must be based on reliable and accessible data. Maximising the use of such data at the EU level is what the ESS has been doing for more than 10 years. The European Commission has been supporting the ESS project with an overall financial contribution of about €18 million so far.

The video message of Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science

More information:

Reviewing early historical documentation of the Holocaust

International Workshop, Budapest, November 27-28, 2012

On November 27 and 28, researchers from all over Europe will get together at the Holocaust Memorial Center in Budapest to discuss and analyse early attempts to describe and document the Holocaust. Early documentations of the Holocaust still influence the way we look upon the mass destruction of European Jews during World War 2. But who created these collections and what were their motives? In order to understand the historical value of the sources preserved in European archives and other documentation centers, we must explore why and how, and under which political circumstance early documentary projects were set up. EHRI - the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure - will organise a second international workshop on this topic in Vienna by the end of 2012. On December 4, 2012 Holocaust experts and representatives of Greek archives will also gather in Athens to map the Holocaust-relevant collections which can be found in state archives, Jewish musea and private institutions in Greece.
The EHRI project is dedicated to opening up and connecting collections related to Holocaust history within a web-based environment. Twenty organisations in 13 countries have worked together already for two years and produced national reports on 42 countries which will soon be published online.

More information:

TRANSVAC 8th Transnational Access Call - deadline 31 October 2012

4 October 2012

The TRANSVAC project has launched a call for European Research Groups to benefit from free services in Vaccine Development. This is the last opportunity to apply for free access to the non-human primate in-vivo model, the reference reagents and the Illumina Deep Sequencing services. More information on services provided, including new services that may be accessed on a paid basis, can be found here  PDF icon . Integrative applications for multiple services at one time are possible and encouraged.

More information can be found at: or email:

Second pillar of ELI gets the Commission's go ahead

18 September 2012

The European Commission approved, on 18 September 2012, financial support from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) for the ELI-Nuclear Physics research facility in Măgurele (South of Bucharest), in Romania.
ELI-NP will serve as a pan European laboratory. It will host a broad range of scientific disciplines: ground- breaking fundamental physics, new nuclear physics and astrophysics as well as material science and life sciences such as nuclear medicine, new radiography and hadron therapy methods. Researchers will also be working on new ways to handle nuclear materials and radioactive waste. 
ELI-NP gets an ERDF contribution of €180 million for the first phase over the years 2012-2015. The total cost of the project amounts to € 356.2 million. It is expected to be operational in 2015.
ELI - Extreme Light Infrastructure was identified in 2006 by ESFRI as one of the top priority research infrastructure for Europe. The ELI-NP is the second pillar of the pan-European Laser facility to be funded by Structural Funds. The Commission granted €236 million in funding (out of a total cost of €278 million) for the first pillar, ELI Beamlines, in the Czech Republic, in April 2011.

More information:
ELI: when scientific excellence contributes to Europe’s cohesion - success story
ELI project
Regional Policy - EU-funded 'Major Projects'

Training course on 'Practical approaches to vaccine development'

3-6 September 2012, University of Lausanne, Switzerland


This course aims to provide an overview of all parts of the vaccine development pipeline. The course is ideally suited to persons working in vaccine development who wish to expand and broaden their knowledge of the field. A maximum of 15 participants will be selected, via a competitive process, to attend this four-day full-time training course. The course is run by the TRANSVAC project which is funded by the European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme. More information
The applications should be submitted through the TRANSVAC website by 30 June 2012 at the latest.

CENDARI project awarded ‘Ireland’s Champion of EU Research’

08 June 2012, Dublin, Ireland

© Shutterstock, 2012
President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins presented achievement awards to academic and companies researchers who are involved in European research at ‘Ireland’s Champions of EU Research’ on 8th June, in Dublin. Five researchers received achievement awards for their projects which were ranked 1st in the EU in their respective research areas.
Dr. Jennifer Edmond, of the Trinity College Dublin, was awarded for her leadership of the CENDARI project - Collaborative European Digital/Archival Infrastructure - that was ranked 1st in Integrating Activities in the Humanities and Social Sciences Infrastructures area.
CENDARI intends to produce a powerful digital platform providing scholars with online access to a broad range of physically dispersed historical collections and archives. It involves a broad collaboration between historians, research infrastructures, and technical experts, from universities and libraries in seven countries. Many of them have already been working towards the consolidation of e-humanities infrastructure in the context of the DARIAH project (the Digital Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities). CENDARI started in February 2012. More information on CENDARI.
Four other researchers and three companies, Intel Ireland, Opsona Therapeutics and Wavebob, from Ireland also received awards.
For more information visit

TRANSVAC call for free services in (pre-)clinical vaccine development: 5th round

[Date: 2011-12-21]

The TRANSVAC consortium aims to accelerate the development of promising vaccine candidates by bridging the gap between bench research and clinical trials through the provision of expertise on e.g. antigen discovery, formulation, in vivo models and antigen production. The project aims to be a European driving force for vaccine development by establishing an efficient sustainable collaborative infrastructure based on a shared vision and goal. In order to support and accelerate vaccine development in Europe, the TRANSVAC project is providing a vaccine development platform that may be accessed for free by innovative European groups.
Eleven research projects have been funded so far. Please visit the selected project website. There are free service slots remaining in 1) Animal models 2) Adjuvants formulation of your Antigen 3) Reagent supply and development by NIBSC, and finally, 4) global analyses platform (microarrays/deep sequencing) for e.g. biomarker research.
Transvac is calling upon receiving more innovative and excellent proposals to use the remaining services. The next cut-off date is 31 January 2012.
Further information on the call is available here. The consortium is also opening up for new partners through a call for new partners. More information.

European roadmap for astroparticle physics, update 2011

[Date: 2011-11-22]

In their recently updated strategy for astroparticle physics, Aspera and ApPEC reaffirm the necessary support for currently running experiments and planned upgrades, in particular in the areas of gravitational waves, dark matter search and neutrino physics, and for underground and space-based infrastructures. The mid-term planning (2015-2020) for astroparticle physics research includes four large projects to be launched in the second half of this decade.
In the domain of TeV gamma-ray astrophysics the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) is clearly the worldwide top priority project. CTA is part of the ESFRI roadmap for research infrastructures and is supported by the EC in its preparatory phase.
KM3NeT, the next generation high-energy neutrino telescope in the Mediterranean Sea, is in its final stages of technology definition, with prototype deployment expected within the next 2-3 years. KM3NeT is an ESFRI project which is also receiving EC support during its preparatory phase.
Next is a global next-generation ground-based cosmic-ray observatory following the footsteps of the Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina.
LAGUNA is a megaton-scale project for low energy neutrino physics and astrophysics. LAGUNA will combine the search for fundamental new phenomena in the cosmos with precise measurements of neutrinos from both cosmic and accelerator origins. LAGUNA is also of relevance for the CERN European Strategy update scheduled for early 2013. It is currently supported by the EC as a design study.
On a somewhat longer perspective, futher very large infrastructures in the domain of dark energy or gravitational wave detection are being considered and will require a global convergence or complementary approaches.

Brochure version of the Roadmap
Roadmap 2011 edition – full version
Contact : ASPERA press officer – CERN, Arnaud Marsollier,, +41 22 767 37 09.

ASPERA, the AStroParticle European Research Area, is a network of 23 European national funding agencies (in 19 countries) responsible for astroparticle physics. ASPERA is funded by the European Commission as an ERA-NET.
ApPEC is the Astroparticle Physics European Coordination.

Release of the 2011 Strategic Roadmap for Australian Research Infrastructure

[Date: 2011-09-30]

Senator the Hon Kim Carr, the Australian Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research has announced the release of the 2011 Strategic Roadmap for Australian Research Infrastructure. The 2011 Roadmap serves to inform the Government on where Australia should make future strategic infrastructure investments to further develop its research capacity and improve innovation outcomes. The 2011 Roadmap and further information regarding the Roadmap process can be found here.

Public consultation on the European Research Area Framework: closure on 30 November 2011

[Date: 2011-09-15]

The scientific community and other interested groups and individuals are being asked to help redefine the research landscape in Europe. Developing and maintaining world-class research infrastructures, and ensuring access to them is part of the aspects covered in the ERA consultation.
Go to Section 6 to find out specific questions relating to research infrastructures. Consultation

Press Release / Memo (Q&A) / ERA Portal

NEKIFUT: Hungarian Research Infrastructure Register on line

[Date: 2011-07-20]

The National Research Infrastructure Register is a searchable database providing information on major research infrastructures (RIs) in Hungary in all fields of science. The Register intends to be a tool for the research, education and innovation community looking for services offered by these infrastructures. It will also provide information, including the ways and conditions of access, on foreign RIs (in first line those in the European Union) available for Hungarian scientists. The Register is available in English in order to inform all interested scientists of the world about RIs open to international collaboration in Hungary.

EHRI Fellowships in Holocaust Studies 2012: call for applications

[Date: 2011-07-20]

EHRI (European Holocaust Research Infrastructure) invites applications for its fellowship programme for 2012. The EHRI fellowships aim to support and stimulate Holocaust research by facilitating international access to high-level ‘infrastructures of Holocaust research’, i.e. key archives and collections related to the Holocaust. The fellowships are intended to researchers and younger scholars, especially PhD candidates with limited resources. Candidates from Middle and Eastern Europe are especially encouraged to apply.
Full information package

ESFRI Strategy Report on research infrastructures and Roadmap update issued today

[Date: 2011-05-03]

Six new projects of research infrastructures have been added to the ESFRI Roadmap: three in the field of biological sciences and three in the field of energy. In all, there are 48 infrastructures in the Roadmap. Of these, 10 are currently under construction and a further 38 are foreseen. Sixteen of those are proceeding so well that construction could start by the end of 2012, thus achieving the EU's Innovation Union goal of starting to build 60% of the ESFRI infrastructures by 2015.
Over the next decade ESFRI will focus mainly on the practical implementation of the infrastructures identified in the Roadmap. It also intends to develop an evaluation methodology for pan-European Research Infrastructures and to address the issue of socio-economic impacts of those facilities. The Forum will also strengthen cooperation with European research and innovation organizations and with European industry.

ESFRI report  PDF icon
Press release
ESFRI projects funded in their Preparatory Phase

Commission gives green light to ELI Beamlines in Czech Republic

[Date: 2011-04-20]

Architecture design of ELI

The European Commission approved, on 20th April, ELI, Extreme Light Infrastructure, for structural assistance from the European Regional Development Fund in the Central Bohemia region of Czech Republic.

ELI will be an international research infrastructure involving about 40 research and academic institutions from 13 EU Member States, forming a pan-European Laser facility that aims to host the most intense lasers world-wide. The ELI Beamlines which will be located in Dolní Břežany near Prague, will be one of the first three pillars of the ELI infrastructure. The other two ELI sites will be built in Hungary and Romania.

ELI Beamlines is the first large project of the Operational Programme 'Research and Development for Innovation' to be approved. The EU financial contribution will amount to € 236 million.

The aim of ELI Beamlines is to create a facility that will pioneer a number of fields of research using ultra-high intensity lasers. The project intends a construction of a modern, cutting-edge laser facility and realisation of many research and application projects. The center should become operational at the beginning of the year 2016.

More information:
ELI Beamlines
ELI project

Open call for free-of-charge high-quality vaccine development services

[Date: 2011-03-21]

TRANSVAC, the European network of vaccine research and development coordinated by the European Vaccine Initiative, currently accepts applications in the field of Vaccine development research. Services include Access to Adjuvants, Animal Models, Standards and Global Analysis. These services are offered by some of Europe’s finest vaccine development labs and are accessible for groups across Europe working in vaccine development. They are not restricted to any particular disease.
For further information please visit the TRANSVAC website or contact, or download the Call Announcement here.

Member States and Commission put forward new research infrastructures targeting energy

[Date: 2010-11-29]


EU Research Ministers and the European Commission have identified three new pan-European research infrastructures in the field of energy: a wind research facility to be built in Denmark; a concentrated solar power installation to be realised in Spain, and a nuclear research reactor to be constructed in Belgium. The global investment is about € 1.2 billion.
The report of the ESFRI Thematic Working group on Energy, where the projects are described, was released at the ENERI Conference on 29th November, in Brussels.
All speeches and presentations are available on the Conference website.
Conclusions  PDF icon
Energy Thematic Working Group Report  PDF icon
Press release

Launch of European Holocaust Research Infrastructure

[Date: 2010-11-16]


The European Holocaust Research Infrastructure (EHRI), which aims to combine existing Holocaust archives into a single online database, was launched in Brussels on Tuesday 16th November. EHRI has been granted financial support of 7 million € from the Seventh Framework Programme for Research. It will bring together twenty research institutions, libraries, archives, museums and memorial sites from eleven EU Member States as well as Norway and Israel.

These institutions will join forces to build a database combining Holocaust archives currently dispersed around Europe, Israel and elsewhere into a cohesive corpus of research resources. Scientists, teachers and students will have on-line access to this unique source of Holocaust material.

"The European Holocaust Research Infrastructure has a great responsibility to preserve the proof of the Holocaust for people in Europe and worldwide, for all of us today, and for future generations” said European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, at the launching at the Royal Museum of Art and History in Brussels, in presence of Israel’s Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar and Belgian Holocaust survivor Nathan Ramet, chairman of the Jewish Museum of Deportation and Resistance, in Belgium.

More information:
Netherlands Institute for War Documentation - NIOD - Coordinator website
EHRI Factsheet

EUROFLEETS: training opportunities

[Date: 2010-11-16]

New training opportunity funded through EUROFLEETS, Institute of Marine Research and Kongsberg Maritime. The new ship-based training course in multibeam echo sounder technology is open for scientists and technicians through a call until November 28th. For more information please see the project website.

ICARE 2010 - International Conference on Airborne Research for the Environment

Toulouse, October 25 - 31, 2010

[Date: 2010-10-14]


For the 10th anniversary of the European Facility for Airborne Research (EUFAR), an international conference will be organized in Toulouse at the Meteo France Conference Center.

Scientists involved in airborne research are invited to share experiences at expert workshops and contribute to a forward-look on user requirements and operator development strategy. A special focus will be on open access to airborne research infrastructures, joint development of a heavy-payload/long-endurance aircraft, availability of a stratospheric aircraft in Europe and the development of Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for environmental research.

An exhibition of European and US research aircrafts will take place at the Toulouse airport. More than 10 research aircrafts will be exposed on the tarmac. This is the first time that research aircraft from all over the world will be brought together. Operators of research aircraft, expert laboratories and industries contributing to airborne instrumentation will also present their products and know-how.

The exhibition will be open to the public on Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st. About 1500 visitors are expected per day. By visiting instrumented aircraft on the ground and remotely participating in real research flights, the public will better understand the rationale for the development of cutting edge research infrastructures.

Further information

CESSDA - Official commitment to set up a European data infrastructure

[Date: 2010-06-29]

From left: Brigita Serafinaviciute (LT),
Beatrix Vierkorn-Rudolph (DE),
Live Haaland (NO),
Marcus Van Leeuwen (NL),
Petteri Kauppinen (FI)

Five European countries, Norway, Germany, Lituania, Finland and The Netherlands, signed on 29 June in Brussels a memorandum of understanding to commit their financial and political support for the setting up of CESSDA, a European social science data infrastructure. The Council of European Social Science Data Archives 'CESSDA' is a network of 20 European archives providing access gateway to important social science data materials. It will now become a truly integrated European data infrastructure, hosted in Bergen, Norway, in which users can locate and gain access to social data resources. CESSDA is one of the 44 projects listed on the ESFRI Roadmap.
Further information

PRACE: launch of supercomputing infrastructure for European researchers

[Date: 2010-06-09]
The European Commission welcomed the launch of a €500 million initiative which boosts European supercomputer capacities and opens them up to scientists across Europe. The Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe (PRACE) unites the European Commission and 20 countries across Europe in a unique initiative which will enable researchers to use super fast computers located in other countries to make up to 1000 trillion calculations per second for their research projects. The European Commission is contributing €70 million through the EU's 7th Research Framework Programme.
More information on PRACE

Volcanology: Out of the ashes

[Date: 2010-06-03]
The Icelandic eruption has given researchers the opportunity to study the volcano and its effects. Atmospheric modellers, remote-sensing researchers, air-sampling experts, geologists and volcanologists are all taking advantage of this rare opportunity to measure a volcano in their own backyard. Interview with Gelsomina Pappalardo, who coordinates the European Aerosol Research Lidar Network (EARLINET), in Nature, 3 June 2010

EUROFLEETS call for ship-based training courses in Ireland

[Date: 2010-05-12]

celtic voyager

Two practical ship-based training courses - 3 days each - organised within the EUROFLEETS FP7 project will be held in Cork, Ireland, in August 2010, onboard the Irish national research vessel R.V. Celtic Voyager thanks to Marine Institute generosity. The training is designed to enable 20 European postgraduate and undergraduate research students to acquire the basic practical skills necessary to conduct offshore multidisciplinary marine science research. Applications must be received via e-mail or post by Friday May 28th at 18:00hrs (CET).
Further information
Contact person: Dr. Pauhla McGrane

Call for proposals 2010-1: 79 proposals submitted

[Date: 2010-01-06]

The Research Infrastructures call for proposals FP7-INFRASTRUCTURES-2010-1 closed on 3 December 2009.
79 proposals have been received, covering all topics called (targeted approach): 50 for Integrating Activities, 11 for Preparatory Phase and 18 for support to Policy and Programme Implementation.
The evaluation of proposals by independent external experts started on 18 December 2009, first with a remote phase of individual assessments, which will be then resumed via on-site consensus and panel discussions in Brussels from 8 to 12 February 2010. Information letters to the applicants are expected to be sent in March 2010 and the negotiation sessions for the successful proposals should be launched in May 2010.
Information and call documents

Elucidating Stradivarius' recipe

[Date: 2009-12-04]

Photo: A. Giordan
© Cité de la Musique

The varnish used by Antonio Stradivarius, the legendary Italian violin-maker, to coat his prestige instruments has been the object of numerous controversial assumptions for more than two centuries. A "secret" recipe would thus be responsible for the famous and praised tone of his instruments. A study driven by the Cité de la musique in Paris together with an international team, which has just been published in the renowned journal Angewandte Chemie International Edition, shed unprecedented light on this subject. Researchers have determined the composition of the varnish layers on five Stradivarius instruments from the collections of the Musée de la musique, Paris. Read more

EUROFLEETS Call for ship-time 2010


Within the EU funded project EUROFLEETS "Towards an alliance of European research fleets", a call for TransEuropean funded ship-time is now open. The EUROFLEETS project provides 66 fully funded days of ship time on 5 Global/Ocean research vessels (Polarstern, Marion Dufresne, L'Atalante, Explora, Celtic Explorer) and 110 days of ship time on 13 Regional ships sailing alongside all European eco regions. Access to large equipment such as ROVs and submersibles is also possible.
Selection will be based on scientific excellence and will take place in September 2010 for cruises to be scheduled in 2011 and 2012. Deadline for the submission of full proposals is Monday 31st of May 18:00 HOURS (CET).
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The Extreme Light Infrastructure - ELI

test tubes

Launched in November 2007, the Preparatory Phase of ELI, involving nearly 40 research and academic institutions from 13 EU Members Countries, has led to the decision (on October 1st, 2009) that this pan-European Laser facility will form an integrated infrastructure based on three to four sites: The three firsts have been selected. They will be located in Prague (Czech Republic), Szeged (Hungary) and Magurele (Romania). The fourth one, dealing with the ultrahigh peak power will be decided in 2012, according to the validation of the adopted technology. The facility should be operational in 2015 for the three first pillars and 2017 for the highest intensity one. >> Read the story

EU shines beam on single European fleet of research vessels

research ship

Work has begun on an EU-funded initiative to link up Europe's research vessels into a single fleet. Dubbed EUROFLEETS ('European fleets'), the 4-year project has been allocated EUR 7.2 million under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

In recent years, oceanographers have increased the use of satellites and floats in their investigations. Nevertheless, research vessels, submarines, and the equipment they carry remain at the front line of marine research, providing scientists with access to the sea surface, the water column and the sea floor so that they can collect samples, make observations, and service seabed observatories. Maintaining and operating research vessels accounts for up to half of the costs of marine research.>> Read the story

A new Community legal framework for European research infrastructures

test tubes

On 29 May 2009, the Council of the European Union reached a political agreement on a draft regulation which will greatly facilitate the setting-up of large research infrastructures in Europe.
The new Community legal framework for a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) will provide a legal personality recognised in all Member States and some of the advantages of international organisations, such as VAT exemptions.>> Read the story


A better picture of Research Infrastructures (RIs) in Europe: launch of the European RIs web portal

RI Portal

Information on the services provided by top level European research infrastructures, in all fields of research, are from today closer to European researchers. The European Commission (EC), in collaboration with the European Science Foundation (ESF), launched today the first ever web portal on European Research Infrastructures. >> Read the story

Biobanking and Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure

test tubes

Launched in 2008, BBMRI – the pan-European biobanking and biomolecular resources research infrastructure – is working to connect biobanks across Europe, giving doctors, scientists and researchers access to all information available about stored biological samples. This information will help with the study of the environmental and genetic causes of disease as well as make the development of drugs and diagnostic tools more efficient. >> Read the story


PRACE – partnership for advanced computing in Europe

Ice landscape


PRACE, the partnership for advanced computing in Europe, has been established to create pan-European, high-performance computing (HPC) service for research purposes. By bringing together 14 European nations, researchers across the continent will benefit from access to a supercomputing structure managed as a single European entity. >> Read the story


Aurora Borealis polar ship

Ice landscape


Ship designers across Europe are working on what is described as the most advanced polar research vessel in the world. The Aurora Borealis, as the ship is called, will serve as a base for international, multidisciplinary expeditions that can take place year round. >> Read the story


Atom-sized X-rays

Interior View of the Test Facility

Interior View of
the Test Facility

A general rule of thumb in modern physics is that if it’s underground it’s cutting-edge. The new European X-ray Free-Electron Laser (XFEL) project, officially launched in Hamburg in June 2007, is as cutting-edge as they come: a 3.4km underground facility due for completion in 2013 that promises to open up areas of research that are currently only science-fiction. >> Read the story


Is anybody out there?

new activities

A quasar detected at the
edge of the known universe

Continent-sized research infrastructures suit the science of Radio Astronomy particularly well. RadioNet is an Integrated Infrastructure Initiative (I3), funded under the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6), that brings together all Europe’s leading radio astronomy facilities. By facilitating access to their resources, and encouraging Europe-wide communication and collaboration, RadioNet is helping to prepare for the coming revolution in Radio Astronomy. >> Read the story