Equipment of Excellence
In 2010, seven Equipex projects were selected as part of the call for "Investments in the future" projects. These pieces of equipment offer new research opportunities and, in the future, will play a major role in transforming the site and the development of new synergies between laboratories and between institutions.
This project is the key to conducting research on ultra high power lasers and their applications. Saclay is world renowned for its activities in this area. In early 2012, an installation will unveiled at the ENSTA premises already on the campus. It will be an important instrument available to the international scientific community and the second most powerful laser in the world. The main objective of the CILEX project is to significantly contribute to the successive instrument, which aims to be 10 times more powerful (30,000 times the global nuclear power), giving access to new, and as yet unexplored, laser-matter interactions. In addition to the applications resulting from subsequent new effects, this is intended to ensure that the French laser industry remains ahead of the game in this sector.
CASD (secure remote access centre for sensitive data)
The secure remote access centre for sensitive data will provide researchers in the humanities and social sciences with access to very detailed data on the population and economic stakeholders while preserving their anonymity. This tool, which will be installed in the new ENSAE ParisTech facilities on the campus, will allow for extensive use of quantitative data, and opens the door to significant advances, especially in economics and sociology and, more generally, across the humanities and social sciences. It will also cater to other consumers of sensitive data on sciences- and sociology-related topics such as health and the environment, as well as the technology research institute.
DIGISCOPE is a network for remote collaborative interaction with complex data, unique in the world in the concentration, diversity and collaborative capabilities of the interactive display devices and the virtual reality within it. It brings together world-renowned teams and existing means of high performance computing (Maison de la Simulation, the meso-centre for measurement at the Ecole Centrale Paris, Teratec). It involves industrial design processes and experimental sciences with decision support and digital pedagogy. The teams at the campus will form an in situ experimentation site of the highest quality. This project will also have advanced pedagogical experimentation equipment, which it is expected will have a strong impact on the international appeal of ICT courses and professions taught at partner institutes.
All teams (present and future) involved in the engineering sciences are designed to lay the foundations for the campus of the future, in order to meet the great scientific challenges of developing and characterising materials related to applications in the areas of energy, transport, space, nanotechnology and biomaterials. This equipment is based on three complementary and interactive platforms: "Development by powder metallurgy", "In situ micro-mechanical characterisation", and "Integrated computing in a high-speed network". They constitute a unique structure able to attract top researchers in the field and to constitute an important component for future training in mechanics and materials.
The Saclay campus is structured around nanoscience and nanotechnology activities, in particular around the “Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Centre” and “nano-innovation” projects. An important factor in the drive for research and technology relates to the ability to analyse nano-objects. One tool of choice is transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The aim of this project is to develop instruments at the forefront of current opportunities in order to anticipate future developments. Internationally recognised leading laboratories are relied on for this task.
This project involves developing a tunable, innovative X-ray source for different uses (imaging and therapy, engineering, materials analysis, nanotechnology). This source, based on an innovative concept, has the distinction of being less expensive and more compact than sources such as synchrotrons. The interest in this project is twofold:
- To promote research in various disciplines by providing this source to various research communities.
- To open up new perspectives in the field of industrial applications made possible by producing relatively inexpensive intense X-ray sources.
Andromede involves creating a new instrument for analysis by mass spectrometry of nano-domains and nano-objects present on a surface. Information will be obtained from the impact of one nano-particle, such as a gold cluster or accelerated fullerenes in the field of MeV. This instrument, which operates at atmospheric pressure, evidently involves biology and in vivo studies, but also the simulation of extraterrestrial interactions with icy surfaces and hydrated clays in different gaseous environments, and monitoring catalysis induced by nano-structured surfaces.