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Eleven infrastructure projects awarded grants in October funding round

Eleven new infrastructure projects have received the green light from the Research Council in this funding round to realise investments of NOK 400 million in equipment. Each project proposal involves multiple research groups.

The 11 projects that can now be realised are:

hexagon Notur II – The Norwegian Metacenter for Computational Science
National high-performance computing for all disciplines

Norway’s four major supercomputing facilities – Stallo, Titan, Njord and Hexagon – perform complex, demanding operations for virtually every scientific discipline and area of research. Now the time has come to overhaul the four facilities. High-capacity computing is a must for research across a broad spectrum of disciplines. Such infrastructure is particularly important for research projects that generate large volumes of data, such as climate research, bioinformatics, medicine, chemistry, physics, materials science, petroleum technology and linguistics. Uninett Sigma is the project host. Notur II and PRACE (see below) are being funded as one project. Grant amount: NOK 48 million in total.

statsbudsjett PRACE - Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe
Access to Europe’s most powerful computing facility

The Research Council of Norway is also allocating funding for Norwegian participation in the European research infrastructure PRACE. This participation involves establishing a prototype computing facility in Norway and a shared Nordic computing facility in Iceland. Furthermore, Norwegian researchers will gain access to Europe’s most powerful facility. PRACE is an ESFRI project. Notur II and PRACE are being funded as one project. Grant amount: NOK 48 million in total.

celler NORBRAIN – Norwegian Brain Initiative – A Large-scale Infrastructure for 21st Century Neuroscience
Better equipment for brain research

Three exceptional Norwegian research environments for neuroscience will upgrade laboratories and scientific equipment; together they will form a national infrastructure for neuroscience research. The three environments are: the Centre for the Biology of Memory at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU); the Centre for Molecular Biology and Neuroscience at the University of Oslo; and the Medical Imaging Laboratory at NTNU. They will be cooperating on upgrading their laboratory facilities and investing in research equipment and systems for exchanging information and findings. The objective is to generate new, revolutionary research on complex mental functions and dysfunctions, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Grant amount: NOK 80 million.

hav NMD – Norwegian Marine Data Centre
System for exchanging marine research data

Norway has rights of disposition for large marine expanses and manages enormous resources in the marine and offshore industries. Marine research is thus of vital importance for Norway. Many valuable marine data series, however, are currently located at a variety of Norwegian research groups without a good system for exchanging marine data between research institutions. The Norwegian Marine Data Centre (NMD) will therefore be upgraded in cooperation with 17 Norwegian research institutions in order to streamline research activities. A new system for documenting, harmonising, archiving, storing, retrieving and transferring data will facilitate high-quality marine research. The Institute of Marine Research will host the project. Grant amount: NOK 48 million.

frimed RAIRD – Remote Access Infrastructure for Register Data
Easier, better access to registry data

In an international context, Norway has excellent registry data. Until now this has been difficult to access for research purposes, but thousands of Norwegian and international researchers in the social sciences, medicine and health, environmental science and cultural studies will now gain easier, improved, more efficient access to this data. The RAIRD infrastructure will attend to technological aspects, organisation and administrative routines for managing and disseminating research data. The Norwegian Social Science Data Services (NSD) and Statistics Norway (SSB) will operate the infrastructure. Grant amount: NOK 35 million.

gen ELIXIR – a Norwegian ELIXIR node
Infrastructure for bioinformatics

The life sciences currently produce more data than there is capacity to store and analyse. Bioinformatics is a bottleneck for the field, particularly for research related to health and understanding relationships between genes and disease. There is also a great need for informatics resources in other disciplines of major national interest, such as the aquaculture industry. The project incorporates hardware and software, including large servers, but perhaps most importantly will provide personnel resources for developing sound solutions for data management. ELIXIR, a project under the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI), will be a Norwegian node in a European initiative to link e-infrastructures in this field. The University of Bergen is the project host. Grant amount: NOK 50 million.

familie ESS-S – Norwegian participation in the European Social Survey ERIC
Compatible social science data from 30 European countries

The European Social Survey (ESS) provides compatible research data on the European population’s attitudes, values and opinions regarding key social issues. The data enable researchers to follow social, political and cultural developments in Europe and provide research-based knowledge for policy development. So far there are 40 000 users of this data worldwide. The project encompasses Norwegian membership in the ESS European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC), as well as funds for developing infrastructure at the Norwegian Social Science Data Services (NSD), the archiving institution for the ESS. The NSD is the project host. The proposal is endorsed by all of Norway’s major social science research groups. Grant amount: NOK 10 million.

database CLARINO - Common Language Resources and Technology Infrastructure
Shared infrastructure for Norwegian and European language databases

The CLARINO project will develop a shared infrastructure for Norwegian language databases, which in turn will be linked with European databases. This infrastructure will be of great importance for the humanities, providing researchers with access to a variety of language databases. Data which has been difficult to access and employ for comparative studies will be accessible for Norwegian research groups. This can lay a foundation for internationally leading research in fields where Norway is already at the cutting edge. The University of Bergen will be responsible for coordinating the CLARINO project, including all relevant linguistic research groups in Norway. CLARINO is the Norwegian segment of the ESFRI project CLARIN. Grant amount: NOK 25 million.

plattform Ullrigg – Upgrade of Ullrigg
Drilling and well technology

Ullrigg is a national centre for developing drilling and well technology, the largest of its kind in Norway. Research institutes, universities and companies have the opportunity to develop and test technology at Ullrigg. The centre is now in need of new, modern equipment and instruments. The upgrade will be of great value for a number of industries related to petroleum recovery on the Norwegian continental shelf and the export of technology on the international market. Grant amount: NOK 40 million.

nano NORTEM – The Norwegian Centre for Transmission Electron Microscopy
Eye for materials research

The transmission electron microscope (TEM) is the principal tool of materials scientists for studying the properties of materials at the atomic level. The microscope, an indispensible aid in materials development, is used to determine the relationship between a material’s structure and its properties. The infrastructure will facilitate research of the utmost value for industrial development in areas such as solar energy, aluminium, petroleum and other process industries. Internationally, Norwegian companies are very advanced in these key industries. SINTEF, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and the University of Oslo will collaborate to establish NORTEM. Grant amount: NOK 58 million.

hav NorARGO – a Norwegian Argo Infrastructure
Global marine monitoring

Argo is a global ocean-observing system for long-term monitoring of the marine climate. Knowledge about the state of the oceans is vital for predicting global climate trends and the impact of climate change, as well as for managing marine biological resources and promoting industrial development. The Argo array consists of oceanographic buoys that drift the world’s seas, collecting critical data for research and climate modelling. The project will receive funding for a limited period in order to purchase new Argo buoys and upgrade Norwegian participation in the European project Euro-Argo, an ESFRI project. Grant amount: NOK 4 million.

helse EATRIS – Norwegian Participation in the ESFRI project “European Advanced Translational Research Infrastructure (EATRIS) in Medicine”
Norway joining planning phase

EATRIS is a pan-European project for coordinating all European infrastructure related to translational research, i.e. research that concerns transferring research discoveries from the laboratory into the medical treatment of patients. The EATRIS grant is only for Norwegian participation in further planning of the ESFRI project as it now enters a new phase. Grant amount: NOK 2 million.
 

Written by:
Richard Susegg/Else Lie. Translation: Darren McKellep/Carol B. Eckmann
Published:
02.11.2011
Last updated:
02.11.2011