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HFML-FELIX combination on the National Roadmap

Date of news: 16 December 2016

HFML and the FELIX laboratory are on the National Roadmap for Large-Scale Research Infrastructures as a combined research facility. On December 13th, State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science Sander Dekker accepted the Roadmap for Large-Scale Research Infrastructure during a presentation in The Hague. The subsidy programme stimulates the development of large-scale research facilities with both national and international reach.

The Roadmap grants are awarded every two years by the Dutch ministry of OC&W and NWO. A total amount of 33 research facilities on the Roadmap are eligible for NWO funding. These selected research facilities will be given top priority in the world of Dutch science in the coming four years.

Whereas HFML and the FELIX laboratory are two unique research facilities in Nijmegen in their own right, it is the first time that the two laboratories are presented on the National Roadmap as one cluster. Prof. Dr. Nigel Hussey and Dr. Britta Redlich, director of HFML and chair of the board of FELIX respectively, were both very pleased to be featured at this event. “It was particularly encouraging to hear the honourable Secretary of State stressing the importance of international facilities like HFML-FELIX in the Dutch research landscape”, Nigel Hussey says.

HFML generates extremely high static magnetic fields and the FELIX laboratory generates extremely intense radiation in the infrared and THz regime. The HFML-FELIX cluster combines these extreme conditions of both facilities into an infrastructure to study, control and manipulate materials, leading to groundbreaking research in different areas of science.Britta Redlich: “HFML-FELIX has the ambition to maintain and strengthen its position of global player in the international world of research. The NWO Roadmap programme is an excellent opportunity for us. The new building, which will literally make a bridge between HFML and FELIX in 2018, symbolizes this new combination.”

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Britta Redlich presenting HFML-FELIX on the National Roadmap to Sander Dekker
© Melvin Tas

The use of the highest static magnetic fields and the largest tunable range of infrared light makes it possible to study and manage various physical and chemical properties and processes. This can lead to new discoveries, which can be relevant for example in diagnosis of diseases with new biomarkers, research on the ‘motor’ of photosynthesis and on novel materials such as the Nobel Prize winning graphene.