Delegation UM and the province of Limburg visit CERN.
In the light of the collaboration between the province, Maastricht University (UM) and Nikhef - the National institute for subatomic physics - a Limburgian delegation has visited CERN. Present were, among others, governor of Limburg Theo Bovens, rector Rianne Letschert and chair Martin Paul from Maastricht University. The tour passed various experiments, among which ATLAS and LHCb, and was guided by Nikhef director Stan Bentvelsen.
Since half a year, UM is contributing to scientific research in the field of gravitational waves (Gideon Koekoek) and subatomic physics at the LHCb experiment (Jacco de Vries), both part of the Maastricht Science Programme. Thomas Cleij, Dean of Sciences and also present, was impressed: "It is a very important and beautiful step towards expanding Science and Engineering at Maastricht University, that we are now also represented at unique physics experiments such as LHCb."
Faculty of Science and Engineering
Paul (UM) called CERN a beautiful example of open, international collaboration between scientists from various disciplines and countries: "This is exactly what our university stands for." The UM announced in the beginning of February that a faculty of 'Science and Engineering' will be established. Paul: "Knowing how open people at CERN work and think will help us shape our new faculty of sciences."
The province of Limburg is a candidate location for the realisation of the newest experiment in the field of gravitational waves, the Einstein Telescope. Bentvelsen: "The visit was an ideal moment to discuss our combined ambitions regarding the Einstein Telescope in Limburg. In addition, we have shown what we are capable of in the field of particle physics, and what the realisation of long-term strategies in these types of projects encompasses."
Both members of the delegation from the university and the province mentioned the positive effect of a large scientific infrastructure on the local environment. Paul: "I immediately wonder what the effect would be if the Einstein Telescope is placed in the Limburgian city of Valkenburg." Governor Bovens called the visit inspiring: "I am impressed how the focus on fundamental research can transcend borders, build bridges and establish connections." The province hopes that the future Einstein Telescope will bring with it that same energy.