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The ET2SMEs project is carried out under the Interreg V-A Euregio Meuse-Rhine Programme, with € 1.15 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). By investing EU funds in Interreg projects, the European Union invests directly in economic development, innovation, territorial development, social inclusion and education in the Euregio Meuse-Rhine.

News / Events

14.12.2021

(Eu)Regional SMEs benefit from Einstein Telescope: Implement your own ideas with up to 50,000 euro vouchers!

Euregio Meuse-Rhine, December 2021 – Our cross-border region is applying for the Einstein Telescope (ET), a third generation gravitational wave detector and cutting-edge research infrastructure of global importance. As of now, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), start-ups and engineering companies with special expertise in the operational and geological technologies of the planned large-scale research facility can receive funding of up to 50,000 euros to realise their project idea. This involves application and experimental development projects that are innovative and carried out with a company on the other side of the border in the extended Euregio Meuse-Rhine.

Applications for innovation vouchers can be submitted until January 24th, 2022 as part of the first call for projects. For more information on the conditions of the competi-tion, please visit: https://et2smes.eu/vouchers/. Far more than 100 businesses, espe-cially SMEs, joined the virtual information event on December 9th and informed them-selves about their inspiring opportunities.

The new offer is provided by the euregional initiative ET2MEs under the leadership of AGIT, regional development agency of Aachen region and supported by the INTER-REG programme of the European Union and the Euregio Meuse-Rhine.

“We not only provide innovation vouchers worth 25,000 to 50,000 euros, but also di-rectly connect the companies with complementary partners on the other side of the national borders,” explains Ralf P. Meyer, leadpartner of the ET2SMEs project at AGIT. “In all phases, from planning and construction to regular operation of the facility, companies from the border region will be able to apply directly for tenders and thus for numerous con¬tracts involving the Einstein Telescope,” Meyer emphasises.

Companies will also soon have the opportunity to present themselves and their know-how in a virtual 3D model of the ET. Furthermore, there will be the opportunity to par-ticipate in an ET Industrial Advisory Board (IAB) of business and research for the large-scale facility as a dialogue partner and advisor in the coming years.

The aim of ET2SMEs is to bring the Einstein Telescope, for which the extended Euregio Meuse-Rhine is competing with excellent chances, closer to SMEs in the re-gion and to let them participate directly in terms of technology development and eco-nomic exploitation. Technologies include optics, mirror coating, laser cryogenics, vac-uum, precision mechanics / mechatronics, sensors / controls, but also drilling technol-ogy, modelling, simulation, artificial intelligence or hydrology. The most important con-cern is to stimulate the cross-border innovation-oriented cooperation of technology-orien¬ted companies and to produce targeted innovations that are significant not only for the ET, but also for other demanding applications and future markets.

The Einstein Telescope is a unique research project with global impact that will put Europe at the forefront of a new research discipline worldwide: The gravitational wave observatory of the latest, third generation will produce fundamentally new insights into the formation of the universe and the evolution of galaxies, stars and black holes. The investment for this large-scale research facility alone amounts to 1.9 billion euros, 500 direct and 1,150 indirect jobs will be created and another two billion euros are esti-mated for its operation until 2080.

Along with Sardinia (IT), the Three-Country Corner is the last suitable region in Eu-rope to apply for the location of this facility. A final decision on the location is expected in early 2025. Commissioning of the facility is planned from 2032.

09.12.2021, virtual (zoom)

ET2SMEs Innovation voucher Kick-off

The call for innovation projects in the ET2SMEs project started on December 1st, 2021.

To give companies from Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany the best possible start for their innovation projects, a virtual meeting took place on 09 December 2021. Here, the Call for Vouchers and first exemplary innovation projects were presented and questions answered.

Join our technology workshops!

  • Precision Mechanics, Sensors, Advanced control algorithms (Postponed till further notice, Limburg (BE))
  • Optics, Mirror coatings, Lasers (Postponed till further notice, Aachen (DE))
  • Geophysical imaging, Simulation & Modelling (Postponed till further notice, Aachen (DE))
  • Vacuum, Cryogenics (Postponed till further notice, Liège (BE))
  • Tunneling, Water technology (Postponed till further notice, Limburg (BE))
  • General workshop: other technologies (Postponed till further notice, Limburg (NL))

Friday, October 8th, 2021

ET Industrial Advisory Board face-to-face Meeting – Friday October 8 from 9:30 am till 2:00 pm

The Einstein telescope and preparation projects as E-TEST, ETpathfinder and ET2SMEs are pushing the technology beyond the current state of the art in many areas, both for the prototype of interferometer and for geological investigation of the subsurface. 

As part of E-TEST, we have established an ET Industrial Advisory Board ( ET IAB) to facilitate close collaboration with various industrial partners, both SMEs and large companies active in the fields of activities required by the ET, from Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany.

The second joint ET Industrial Advisory Board will take place on October 8 2021 from 9:30 am till 2:00 pm, lunch included. We have the pleasure to announce that it will be organized face-to-face, at the Interface Entreprises ULiège, Avenue Pré Aily, 4, 4031 Angleur (Liège), Belgium.

The general/common part of the meeting will be recorded and published on the website. The specific Working Groups are only organized face-to-face and won’t be recorded.

Agenda

Registration, check of Sanitary Pass & Welcome coffee from 8:45 am

9:30 am – 11:00 am – Welcome and general session

Welcome – by Annick Pierrard, ULiège Interface Entreprises

  • WHY: Purpose of the joint ET Industrial Advisory Board?
  • WHO: To who is it dedicated?
  • HOW:  What are the conditions to participate?
  • WHEN: Frequency of the meeting

Short project presentations & latest achievements:

  • Einstein Telescope (ET) project, investment & ESFRI Call time-line
  • Einstein Telescope social/economic impact, return on investment – by Provincie Limburg NL / Lysias
  • E-TEST : Einstein Telescope Site and Technology – 01.02.2020 – 31.07.2023
  • ETpathfinder, R&D Laboratory – 03.06.2019 – 02.06.2022
  • ET2SMEs – 01.03.2021 – 31.08.2023 “Maximising the economic and social impact of the possible implementation of the Einstein Telescope in Euregio Meuse-Rhine”
  • Q/A session

11:00 am – 11:15 am – Coffee break

11:15 am – 11:30 am – Separation into 6 sub-working groups in different meeting rooms

11:30 am – 13:00 pmInteractive industrial/scientist Prototype and Geology Working Groups led by the ET Technology Sheets Responsibles, with the participation of one ET2SMEs business developer per WG, based on the technologies requested by the Einstein Telescope

  1. Cryogenics – Vacuum
  2. Precision mechanics and mechatronics – Sensors – Advanced control algorithms
  3. Mirrors coating – Lasers – Optics & optical metrology
  4. Geophysical imaging and remote sensing
  5. Water technology – Tunneling technology
  6. Simulation and modeling

Please find the mutual NDA to be completed and signed in duplicate (one for the company, the other for the University of Liege) by each company participating in the ET Technology Working Groups.
Please send it scanned to a.pierrard@uliege.be, and bring the original copy for the University of Liege signed on the day of the ET IAB.

13:00 pm – 14:00 pm – Lunch in the different meeting rooms

14:00 pm – End of the ET IAB

The registration to the ET IAB is free of charge but mandatory via this link. We are really looking forward to meeting all of you on October 8!

On 23/09/21 we have reached the maximal number of participants that we can welcome face-to-face at the Interface Entreprises ULiège.

From now on, only virtual participation to the general part of the ET IAB will be possible (from 9:30 am till 11:00 am).

Please note that the 6 technology Working Groups are only organised face-to-face and won’t be recorded.

Deadline for registration to participate virtually to the general part on the ET IAB (from 9:30 am till 11:00 am) is Thursday October 7 at 10:00 am. The ZOOM link will be sent to all registered persons.

Feel Safe.

Gates wide open – with proof. Welcome to the Interface Entreprises – ULiège with full vaccination protection, recovery or negative test result from an official testing centre. Your proof is complete in combination with your identity card or passport.

The right timing. A negative PCR or antigen test must be no more than 48 hours old, the second vaccination at least 14 days ago, the positive PCR test result at recovery between 28 days and 6 months old. Done? Let´s go.

It all depends on the right apps. For fast, smooth entry, it‘s up to you too. Enter your proof of full vaccination, recovery or negative test in the apps Corona-Warn or CovPass.

By far the best idea. Though we ask you to maintain a minimum distance of 1.5 metres from other ET Industrial Advisory Board participants, you will still see the latest innovation up close and personal.

For everyone‘s protection. Please wear a medical mask or FFP2 mask (no visors or fabric masks). And although you might not be able to see it, we are smiling at you behind our masks.

Networking without physical contact. Even though you might be delighted at seeing other people again or closing a successful Science-to-Business or Business-to-Business collaboration – please forego shaking hands and physical contact.

“Bless you.”  For the sake of yourself and others, please sneeze or cough into the crook of your arm. Even better, do so while maintaining a great distance of least one metre or turning away from others.

Effective infection protection. Sanitiser dispensers located in our entrance and meeting rooms are ready for frequent use. And highly exposed surfaces are regularly cleaned and disinfected for you.

Let it taste good. With our catering partners in the different meeting rooms: with tailor-made concepts for compliance with all safety and hygiene regulations. Enjoy your meal!

Thursday, July 1st, 2021

Einstein Telescope approved for ESFRI Roadmap 2021

On June 30th, the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) decided to include the Einstein Telescope in the 2021 upgrade of its roadmap. This confirms the relevance of this major international project for a next generation gravitational waves observatory for the future of research infrastructures in Europe and gravitational wave research at global level.

The Research Infrastructure Consortium Coordinators, Antonio Zoccoli of INFN and Stan Bentvelsen of Nikhef, are extremely excited about this result. “We are very pleased about this important result: the ESFRI approval acknowledges the value of our project and strengthens the Einstein Telescope at the European level”, says Zoccoli. “We will work synergistically for its development, confident that it is strategic to foster our knowledge of the universe, technological innovation and social growth.”

“The ESFRI-status is a major step towards the realisation of this European project, – says Bentvelsen – “scientifically the Einstein Telescope is undisputed, and with the ESFRI-status there is indispensable recognized support for its quality and impact. We are looking ahead to further develop the plans together with all countries involved.”

The Italian government submitted the proposal for the ESFRI-roadmap on September 9th, 2020 supported by the Netherlands, Belgium, Poland and Spain. “The preparation of the proposal has been a two years large effort involving several research institutions and universities, now composing the Einstein Telescope consortium, belonging to ten European countries and having real interdisciplinary competences”, says Michele Punturo, Coordinator of the ET-ESFRI proposal preparation.

Since September 9th, several of the people involved were invited to present the plans, to deepen specific aspects of the project and answer questions of the ESFRI evaluation committee. Among them was Marica Branchesi, member of the ET-ESFRI proposal preparation team: “We have worked hard to develop the science case of the Einstein Telescope. Each simulation showed us the enormous capabilities of the Einstein Telescope observing the Universe. The Einstein Telescope will revolutionize our knowledge in fundamental physics, astrophysics, and cosmology”, says Branchesi.

The Einstein Telescope was identified after a long and accurate process of evaluation and selection. During the ESFRI Assembly meeting, delegates officially decided to include the Einstein Telescope in the roadmap. This official European approval now brings the project into a new phase. The scientific Institutions involved from ten countries (Belgium, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Spain, Switzerland, Poland, The Netherland, United Kingdom) will now have to intensify their research and development work on the Einstein Telescope and gravitational waves. It will also speed up the ongoing subsurface studies for the characterization and evaluation of the candidate sites that could host the underground infrastructure.

A new window on the universe

The Einstein Telescope is a future underground observatory for gravitational waves. The instrument will be much more sensitive than existing gravitational wave detectors. Therefore, the observatory will enable scientists to peek into the ‘dark ages’ of the universe for the first time. Gravitational waves were detected for the first time in 2015 and offer a new way of studying the universe. Until their first detection, scientists could only study the universe by looking at light or radiation, but with gravitational waves they can observe vibrations of spacetime itself.

Although the existence of gravitational waves was already predicted by Albert Einstein a hundred years ago, he did not expect it was possible to ever detect them. Yet with the mind blowing technological developments of the last century, scientists and engineers have managed to reach the sensitivity and precision that is needed to observe them. This opened a new era in the study of the universe, the era of gravitational wave and multimessenger astronomy, and led to a Nobel prize in 2017. The Einstein Telescope will lead to many more unimaginable discoveries in the future in this new field of research.

Thursday, May 27th, 13.00 – 14.30 pm

ET2SMEs – Kick-Off Event

The Einstein Telescope (ET) will open a new window to the universe through the observation of gravitational waves, positioning Europe at the forefront of this outstanding „cutting edge“ technology. The extended Euregio Meuse-Rhine obtains not only the best chances for being the location of this new research facility. Additionally, it offers great opportunities for innovative SMEs to further develop their advanced products and services, not only for the telescope, but also to other applications and other highly demanding markets!

ET2SMEs supports the development of new innovative products and services by promoting transnational R&D projects carried out by SMEs working together across borders in the extended Euregio Meuse-Rhine. If you want to learn more, how also your company can benefit, please join the Kick-Off Event on May 27th, 13.00 – 14.30 pm.

Welcome speeches
(10 minutes / 5min. each)
Dr. Tim Grüttemeier, StädteRegion Aachen
Mark Vos, Coordinator Interreg Euregio Meuse-Rhine
Key note
(15 minutes)
“The Einstein Telescope and the research activities for a soft landing in the Dutch-Belgian-German cross-border region”
Prof. Dr. Stefan Hild, University of Maastricht
Presentation
(15 minutes)
“ET2SMEs – The Einstein-Telescope and SMEs”
In a nutshell: Targets, offers & added values for SMEs
Ralf P. Meyer, Leadpartner AGIT

First results: ET Technologies Online Catalogue & 3D model of ET competencies in extended EMR area
Annick Pierrard, ITF ULiège & Geoffrey Parks, Sowalfin
(5 minutes)Break / Selection of session I or II
Parallel sessions 30 minutes
(Input: 15 minutes / Q&A: 15 minutes)
“The challenges of ET relevant technologies”
Session I: Instrument technologies, Input from: Prof. Dr. Achim Stahl, RWTH Aachen
Session II: Geology technologies, Input from: Prof. Dr. Frédéric Nguyen, ULiège
In each session: Q&A from businesses, research and stakeholders

Publications / Press Releases

26 May 2021, De Limburger

Nieuw project Einstein Telescope

March 01 2021

SMEs benefit from Einstein Telescope

April 30, 2021

Télescope Einstein : une réelle opportunité pour nos entreprises wallonnes

Movies / Animations

May 27 2021

ET2SMEs – Kick-Off Event

April 26, 2021

The Einstein Telescope

The Einstein Telescope presentation by Albert.