Funding for research with synchrotron radiation

In Germany, a complex funding landscape has devoloped. Most synchrotron radiation sources are run by institutes of the Helmholtz Association, which are jointly financed by the federal and respective state governments. At these research facilies not only own research isconducted, but to a wide extent infrastructure is also offered to external users from other institutes, universities and industry from Germany and abroad.

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The DFG is the largest provider of outside research funding for universities

Research at universities relies on outside funding which come from a variety of sources: from private foundations, federal funding, additional state funding, more and more from programmes of the European Union and finally from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation), the largest provider of outside research funding for universities, which is also financed jointly by federal and the state governments.

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Joint research (ErUM-Pro) for the development of large research facilities

Innovative research needs new methods. Therefore, the universities are provided with federal funding in an own programme for the development of innovative instrumentation and new research methods at the facilities. In the framework programme "Erforschung von Universum und Materie" (ErUM) of the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF), through the action plan "ErUM-Pro" (so far "joint research"), projects are funded to involve universities in the development of research facilites. Every third year the BMBF publishes a call and assigns the implementation to a project management agency (PT DESY). The project management agency ("Projektträger) is always open to questions regarding proposals, which can be made by single or consortia of working groups from German universities in cooperation with the respective facilites that run the sources.

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International and binational funding

In addition to the national funding possibilites, there are EU programmes and also a German-Swedish and a German-Russian funding programme in this field of research. Joint projects have to involve at least one photon or neutron source as large facility for basic research in natural sciences and focus on the development of methods or instrumentation. The German-Swedish Röntgen-Ångström Cluster (RÅC) focusses on mateiral sciences and structural biology with synchrotron radiation and neutrons. Calls are usually published every second year. The connection to Russia is via the "Ioffe-Röntgen-Institute" (IRI). German-Russian joint projects are supposed to develop and apply accelerator based photon sources and research with neutrons. As a joint venture of RÅC and IRI, every year a fully financed RACIRI summer school takes place with students from German, Sweden and Russia.