MAX IV and nine Swedish universities joint effort to educate young scientists, commenced

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PRISMAS, Ph.D. Research and Innovation in Synchrotron Methods and Applications in Sweden is launched. The programme includes hands-on training in cutting-edge synchrotron skills that is applicable in various research areas at MAX IV in Lund, Sweden. It combines practical experience with courses covering all aspects of synchrotron radiation to produce researchers who are experts in these methods and their fields. 

Students from diverse scientific backgrounds will be recruited through partner universities to learn to use and develop synchrotron methods in their research while acquiring the skills to tackle some of the most critical sustainability development goals and future societal challenges in their projects led by selected Principal Investigators from around Sweden. This 5-year intersectoral and interdisciplinary project will create a connected network of next generation X-ray experts, enabling a wider range of stakeholders to take full advantage of world-leading synchrotron facilities such as MAX IV, while tackling current societal challenges in the same breath.

The programme is dedicated to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Horizon Europe’s essential research and innovation areas. It aims to develop primary findings to practical solutions and innovations dedicated to healthy people, healthy planet, clean energy, sustainable technologies, cultural and geological heritage, and accelerator science areas.

The initiative is supported by nine Swedish universities and a network of 43 partners from academia, industry (including market-leading industrial companies), and institutes. The project is co-funded by the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action Co-funding of regional, national, and international programmes (COFUND). 

Marjolein Thunnissen, MAX IV Science Director, PRISMAS Programme Director.

“PRISMAS is the first project of its kind at this scale. It creates a network of Swedish universities towards MAX IV to utilize the facility to its ultimate potential. Since the programme is dedicated to UN Sustainable Development Goals and Horizon Europe’s key research and innovation areas, we will see progress in addressing health, food, and energy issues. There is research on batteries and energy, the development of new medicines, and much more. It will also help method and instrument development which the community needs,” explained Marjolein Thunnissen, MAX IV Science Director, PRISMAS Programme Director.  

“PRISMAS has a unique collaborative and multicomponent environment and connects fundamental science with real applications related to the industry. Long-term collaborative networks between Stockholm University, MAX IV, RISE, and Alfa Laval AB will be established from the programme since we will evaluate the fundamental aspects related to biobased water purification technologies regarding water recycling and clean water bodies,” explained Aji Matthew, Professor of the Department of Materials and Environmental Chemistry, Stockholm University, speaking about her research project in PRISMAS. 

Two application windows, career-based learning opportunities

There are two PRISMAS open calls during 2023 with a time window of two months: March-April and July-August. The first call is between March 1st – April 30th 2023, and the second call is between July 1st – August 31st 2023. 

Experts-led summer and winter schools and fellows’ annual meetings are part of the programme. The partner universities are also coordinating to offer a large selection of relevant courses that students can use to meet the requirements for the Ph.D.  

Further information on the programme’s application process and requirements are available on the PRISMAS page

“PRISMAS will create a vibrant and stimulating interdisciplinary environment for the students. The experience they gain from interaction and collaboration with such a diverse group of researchers will be extremely valuable when they finish the programme and continue with their careers,” explained Lindsay Merte, PRISMAS Director of Studies, Associate Professor at the Department of Materials Science and Applied Mathematics, Malmö University.