Construction of EU-funded super laser begins
The construction of the ELI Beamlines centre, to include the world’s most efficient laser, began in Dolní Březany on Tuesday. The project is being largely funded by the EU. The launch was attended by Prime Minister Petr Nečas and the education minister, Petr Fiala. The prime minister called the project the “most important scientific installation in the country”. The new centre has been designed to attract international experts as well as to curb the so-called brain drain in Czech science. The centre will focus on research into cancer treatment, medical imaging and diagnosis. The laser will also be used in the development and testing of new materials and the handling of radioactive waste. The centre is expected to begin operation in 2016, reaching full performance by 2019, Jan Řídký, the director of the Czech Academy of Sciences’ Physics Institute, said.