Minister of Education and Science of Latvia evaluates CAMART2 contribution to the ISSP UL infrastructure upgrade

CAMART2 – the biggest ever project implemented at the ISSP UL started in 2017, and all activities related to the infrastructure upgrade were completed at the end of June 2021. In the hope that the epidemiological situation would improve, the opening event of the upgraded infrastructure was postponed till the beginning of 2022. Unfortunately, it was still impossible to organize a large-scale event as initially planned.

The opening event gathered the Institute’s management, researchers, and the Minister of Education and Science of the Republic of Latvia, Anita Muižniece, who visited the renovated laboratories and learned about the possibilities of the new equipment. The young scientists of the Institute told the Minister about their scientific work and discoveries. After that, A. Muižniece had a discussion with the ISSP UL’s management about the possibilities to promote the development of science and innovation and the need for constructive dialogue and closer cooperation. A. Muižniece emphasized that the ISSP UL is the leading research center and is one of the largest material science institutes in Latvia that has preserved its international acclaim from the time it was established to the present day. The Latvian science community can be proud of highly qualified Doctors of Science working at the Institute and conducting internationally competitive research, educating students, and offering innovative research solutions for industrial needs.

CAMART2 aims to establish the ISSP UL as a significant center of modern materials research and technology transfer in Latvia and the Baltic Sea region. The material science center was established with world-class experts in innovation and technology transfer and project partners - the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) and the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE). Thanks to the Ministry of Education and Science, the Ministry of Economics, as well as the co-financing of the ISSP UL, in addition to the funding in the amount of 14.9 million euro granted by the EC for the implementation of the CAMART² project, 15.3 million euro were invested in the upgrade of the ISSP UL infrastructure within the framework of the Specific Support Objective No. This funding ensured the establishment of the Nanotechnology Center with 4-8 ISO class cleanrooms, the reconstruction of the Institute premises, including several laboratories. Within the frame of the project, the laboratories were equipped with the latest generation of world-class equipment. Open Labs are available to researchers, students and industry.

Director of the Institute Andris Anspoks: “We are delighted to have been able to attract these important investments to the development of the Institute’s infrastructure and the growth of the ISSP UL as a global research and innovation hub. Thanks to this investment, a unique Nanotechnology Center of national importance has been established, modern equipment has been acquired, excellent scientists, research, innovation, and industry projects have been attracted, strengthening the Institute’s excellence in solid-state physics and material sciences. Our goal is to be the leaders in photonics and smart materials, to strengthen cooperation with Latvian and European industry and science. We pay special attention to interdisciplinary cooperation; for example, we see great prospects in biomedicine. We cooperate with our industry leaders — Latvian Institute of Organic Synthesis, Latvian Biomedical Research and Study Center. I am very pleased that the Minister has become acquainted with our institute in person, as it gives a real picture of what is an excellent scientific institute”.