The new 3.2M€ Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Doctoral Network EuPRAXIA-DN started with a kick-off meeting on 16/17 January 2023 in Brussels that brought together all the partners involved in the project for the first time.
The EuPRAXIA Doctoral Network will support the wider EuPRAXIA project, which aims at the construction of an innovative electron accelerator using laser- and electron-beam-driven plasma wakefield acceleration.
EuPRAXIA-DN will offer twelve high-level Fellowships between universities, research centres and industry that will carry out an interdisciplinary and cross-sector plasma accelerator research and training program.
The meeting was hosted by Prof Carsten P Welsch, who coordinates the network from the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics INFN in Frascati, at the premises of KoWi, the European Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations in Brussels.
On the first day, Professor Welsch and members of the University of Liverpool’s Project T.E.A.M. explained the managerial aspects of the network, while the coordinator of the EuPRAXIA Preparatory Phase project, Dr Ralph Assmann, gave an overview of the future EuPRAXIA facility. Speakers from KoWi and the UK Research Office provided further context and guidance related to efficient project implementation.
The participants in the meeting were treated with a guided visit to the European Parliament which underlined the European spirit of the project and the importance of international collaboration.
In the afternoon of the first day, representatives from each of the eight beneficiary partners gave an introduction of their respective institutions, outlining the specific research and training program designed for the PhD student that they will be hosting.
Fifteen associate partners, including the University of Liverpool, also had the opportunity to detail their contributions to the network on the second day. They will offer secondments to the network’s Fellows and make important contributions to the wider training.
In particular, the University of Liverpool will host two fellows, funded by UKRI, to work on ultra-short electron bunch length measurements and laser-driven proton beam therapy. It will also carry out the communications, outreach, and events program for the network, through the Project T.E.A.M. based at Daresbury.
Presentations on supervision and mentoring and strategic communication concluded an informative and very successful event. Professor Welsch said: “It was great to meet all of the project partners for the first time in person. We have very ambitious plans that will push the boundaries of plasma accelerator research over the next few years, and will provide a comprehensive training to our Fellows that will provide them with the skills set needed to success in the research and careers. We all look forward to now starting our collaborative research.”
EuPRAXIA-DN will focus on boosting the career prospects of its Fellows in one of the most exciting scientific and technical innovations of our time. The network is currently welcoming applications for its positions with a first application deadline on 31 January 2023.
More information about the project and how to apply can be found at http://www.eupraxia-dn.org.
This project has received funding from the European Union´s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 101073480 and the UKRI guarantee funds.