Tyndall National Institute and CIT chosen to train the next generation of European High-Tech Researchers
Published on: Tuesday, 15 March 2011
The Tyndall National Institute, CIT, and UCC have been awarded the joint coordination of a high-tech EU postgraduate training programme. The €4.8M programme, Postgraduate Research on Photonics as an Enabling Technology (PROPHET), was launched today at CIT's Blackrock Castle Observatory, with the 15 European academic and industry partners.
Dr Guillaume Huyet, the project coordinator, is a researcher and senior lecturer at CIT and Tyndall. “Photonics is the science of generating and manipulating light, and has applications in a diverse range of areas. The PROPHET research training programme focuses on photonics as an enabling technology, and will cover applications such as telecommunications, gas sensing for environmental monitoring, solar energy, and medical imaging."
"The network will train 14 PhD students and 5 postdoctoral researchers over four years, in the wide spectrum of skills required for a multi-disciplinary, industry-focused career in photonics. Photonics has been identified at the European strategic level as a key ‘lead market’ industry, accounting for revenues of €49 billion in Europe in 2006.”
The project manager, Dr David Williams, remarked, “We are delighted to have been awarded the coordination of this project in a highly competitive EU funding application process. Of the €4.8M total funding, just over €1M is coming to Ireland, which will support PhD students and researchers at Tyndall, CIT, and Superlum Ireland, an Irish-based company manufacturing superluminescent diodes.”
The young researchers funded within the PROPHET network have an exceptional opportunity to obtain a comprehensive training in photonics, with generous Marie Curie funding which includes a competitive salary and mobility and career exploration allowances. Not only do they benefit from the excellent facilities and expertise at their host institute, but will also experience secondment visits to other network partners, all of whom have worldwide reputations as leaders in their field. Each researcher will also gain valuable experience of working in industry, thanks to the strong industry involvement in the network. The young researchers will form the core of a vibrant, European-wide network of photonics researchers, with annual training workshops, a summer school, and a final network conference.
PROPHET is funded by the EU’s Marie Curie funding mechanism, as an Initial Training Network (ITN). The ITN calls for funding are highly competitive; in the 2010 call in which PROPHET was funded, only 63 proposals were successful out of 863 submitted, a success rate of just 7%. PROPHET is one of only two ITNs in the 2010 call to be coordinated by an Irish partner.
The Marie Curie Actions are the EU’s funding mechanism for supporting the mobility and career development of researchers across Europe. Since 1996, they have helped thousands of researchers of all ages, nationalities and disciplines develop their careers and realise their research dreams – no other scheme in the world offers such a wide variety of opportunities to such a broad range of researchers. The Initial Training Networks (ITNs) are one particular Marie Curie Action that supports early stage researchers – those in the first 5 years of their career after undergraduate level. To date, some 240 ITNs have been funded, in the three funding calls since 2007.
Anyone interested in becoming a researcher in the PROPHET network is encouraged to visit the vacancies page on the project website, www.prophet-itn.eu .
For further information, please contact:
Project Manager, CIT/Tyndall,
Marketing and Communications Manager, Tyndall National Institute.