Jessica Vermeer
4 May 2020

As part of the National Roadmap for Large-Scale Scientific Infrastructure, the Dutch Research Council (NWO) is investing 12 million euros in the Fundamental Sciences E-infrastructure (Fuse). An initiative of Astron, the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy, and Nikhef, the National Institute for Subatomic Physics, Fuse will develop systems and services to process the rapidly growing amounts of data from three research instruments in which the Netherlands is a partner: the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) particle accelerator, the KM3Net neutron telescope and the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) radio telescope. The goal is to ensure future data capacity for science in particle physics and radio astronomy.

Astron SKA
With hundreds of satellite dishes and thousands of antennas spread across Western Australia and South Africa, the Square Kilometer Array is the world’s largest radio telescope. Credit: Astron

Fuse is to provide new computing capacity and expansion of big data expertise. The project is a collaboration between Astron, Nikhef and Surf, the coordinator of the digital infrastructure for research in the Netherlands. The total investment amounts to approximately 29 million euros, including 11 million euros in calculation time from Surf and 6 million euros from Astron and Nikhef combined.

Fuse is one of seven proposals in the National Roadmap for Large-Scale Scientific Infrastructure that were granted a total of 93 million euros of funding from NWO. These funds are meant to enable the construction or renewal of essential research infrastructures. The other awarded projects include a distributed, state-of-the-art magnetic resonance facility for the Netherlands (UNMR-NL Grid, 18 million euros) and a Dutch center of excellence for science under extreme conditions (HFML-Felix, 15 million).