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HELLAS-CH: A pioneering cross-disciplinary synergy at the service of the Economy of Knowledge.

Jul 26, 2018

A pioneering cross-disciplinary scientific synergy has been founded in Crete. Twelve Greek academic and research institutions under the coordination of the Foundation for Research and Technology - Hellas (FORTH) have joined forces challenging the exploration of new horizons in the context of Knowledge Economy. Light is the overarching ingredient in this initiative.

The Institute of Electronic Structure and Laser (IESL) of FORTH is leading the establishment and implementation of the HELLAS-CH, a promising National Research Infrastructure (NRI), which offers access to a) advanced experimental facilities capable of supporting state-of-the- art research on laser science, technology and applications, and b) versatile integrated tools and technologies for addressing demanding research challenges in the field of Cultural Heritage (CH) Science.

The pioneering HELLAS-CH infrastructure is far beyond a conventional network of excellence, and aims to:

a) Capitalise major scientific achievements in the country, making essential experimental resources available to prominent researchers in Greece.

b) Integrate the new generation of brilliant researchers into the vibrant academic environment of FORTH and identify leaders to extend the frontiers in the science and technology of light (Photonics).

c) Offer a number of top level resources and infrastructures along with related competences that will enable scientists to pursue cutting-edge research in the field of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Medicine, Informatics, Applied Mathematics, Geophysics, Photonics and Micro/Nano-Engineering.

d) Shed light on not yet revealed aspects of the universal cultural heritage through new findings and tools, as satellites interact with underwater antiquities, and new light sensors open up novel channels towards the knowledge/understanding of our past.

Active involvement of IESL-FORTH in several European Research Infrastructure projects (ELI, LASERLAB Europe, IPERION-CH, and in collaboration with the Technological Educational Institute (TEI) of Crete in the HiPER infrastructure) has identified the Institute as a pioneer in the unification of today's scientific networks. Equally important in this achievement has been the role of the Institute of Computer Science (ICS-FORTH) in the corresponding infrastructure projects, ARIADNE and PARTHENOS.

Key participants in this national initiative are: The National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, the National Technical University of Athens, the Technical University of Crete, the University of Ioannina, the University of Patras, the Democritus University of Thrace, the Technological Educational Institute of Crete, the Academy of Athens, the Hellenic Pasteur Institute, the National Research Foundation and the Ormylia Foundation.

FORTH and the TEI of Crete will provide access to their research infrastructures to scientists across the country in addition to those abroad; the twelve institutes will participate and contribute to four Joint Research Activities aimed at improving access, education and training.

The HELLAS-CH infrastructure “ELI - LASERLAB Europe Synergy, HiPER και” (MIS 5002735) is co-funded by the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) 2014-2020 of the European Union with a budget of approximately 4 Mio € over the course of two years.


HELLAS-CH Chief Coordinator:

Dimitrios Charalambidis

Affiliated faculty member of IESL-FORTH

Professor at the University of Crete, Physics Department

ELI-ALPS Chief Scientific Advisor Coordinator:

Demetrios Anglos

Affiliated faculty member of IESL-FORTH

Professor at the University of Crete, Chemistry Department


Hellas-CH Outreach Coordinator:

Eleftheria Katsouli

Tel.:+302810 391840, e-mail: