Scottish universities launch world's first Max-Planck partnership
The world’s first International Max-Planck Partnership was launched by five Scottish universities yesterday (19 December).
The multi-million pound partnership, with five prestigious Max-Planck Institutes (MPI) in Germany, is a major boost to the future development of new quantum technologies and fundamental science in Scotland.
The initiative will significantly strengthen research links between Scotland and Germany – and enhance Scotland’s reputation as a world leader in fundamental, or ‘discovery’, science that forms the foundations of emerging and future technologies.
The collaboration will lead to the establishment of the world’s first International Max-Planck Partnership (IMPP). This new model will incorporate leading physics research groups from the universities of Glasgow, Strathclyde, St Andrews, Heriot-Watt and Edinburgh with The Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) Hannover; the MPI for the Science of Light, Erlangen; the MPI for Quantum Optics, Garching; the MPI for Chemical Physics, Dresden; and the MPI for Solid State Physics, Stuttgart.
The Centre will specifically support research around the theme of ‘Measurement and Observation at the Quantum Limit’ (MOQL), which has relevance for a variety of hi-tech industry sectors including oil field exploration and quantum computing.
Scotland is already a leading centre for research in quantum technologies and this partnership will complement the country’s existing world-class science and engineering research bases, including the new £10 million Centre for Sensors & Imaging Systems (CENSIS) based at the University of Glasgow, which opens in January 2014, and the Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics at the University of Strathclyde.
By facilitating research collaborations and knowledge exchange between leading domestic and international institutes, Scotland is now in a position to establish itself as an international hub for the discovery and exploitation of cutting-edge science and technology – and a magnet for the world’s best researchers in the field.
The IMPP Partnership is supported by funding from the Scottish Funding Council, and a joint grant from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the Science & Technology Facilities Council. The Scottish universities involved will also contribute to the initial funding package of up to £10million over five years