Making science happen
To put science at the heart of societal and economic development, we need to devise strategies to push the limits of science in order to promote innovation, tackle societal challenges and deliver big results. In Europe, one such strategy is the development of research infrastructures - organisations that enable the research community to use specific facilities, resources and services, thus fostering collaboration between scientists from different countries, economic sectors, research fields, and institutions.
Why do we need research infrastructures?
Research infrastructures are an elegant solution to make science more effective and sustainable in the complex European backdrop of interactions among nation states. They enable an organised, fair and transparent system to share knowledge and resources, and in doing so, they contribute to the pooling of data, facilities and equipment, thereby avoiding unnecessary duplication of effort. They facilitate scientific excellence and solve bottlenecks, pushing forward the frontiers of scientific disciplines, and enabling transformative technological development.
With the goal of elevating science across the globe, European research infrastructures include members and partners from other countries and regions and span over different research fields, including Biological and Medical Sciences, Material Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities, Environmental Sciences, Energy and Astronomy. They are strongly supported by the European Commission, which has set up the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI), a strategic instrument to steer policy-making and facilitate the better use and development of research infrastructures.
Collaborations with Partner Research Infrastructures
Instruct-ERIC has signed a bilateral Collaboration Agreement with Euro-BioImaging ERIC to underline the strategic importance of working very closely to ensure sustainable, joint service provision to the partly overlapping user community.
Innovative imaging technologies have revolutionised the life sciences by allowing researchers to visualise and measure a broad spectrum of molecular and cellular processes and events with an accuracy and coverage that have been out of reach until now. Euro-BioImaging ERIC offers life scientists open access to imaging instruments, expertise, training opportunities, and data management services that they do not find at their home institutions or among their collaboration partners. All scientists, regardless of affiliation, area of expertise, or field of activity, can benefit from these pan-European open access services. Euro-BioImaging will ensure excellent research and development across the life sciences in Europe. For most technologies, scientists are invited to receive hands-on training at the imaging set-up of their choice so that they can generate the desired data sets themselves and expand their technological knowledge. Visits can vary in length between single days to several weeks, depending on the project’s need and individual circumstances. Scientists interested in accessing Euro-BioImaging services are invited to submit a project description any time via the online application portal.
Access to technologies
The technologies offered by Euro-BioImaging can be accessed at Euro-BioImaging Nodes, which are internationally renowned imaging facilities distributed across Europe. They cover the whole spectrum of biological and pre-clinical imaging, with an ever-growing portfolio of cutting-edge instruments.
Currently, the offered services include about 40 different technologies, among others:
» biological imaging (e.g. LSCM/CLSM, STED, FCS, CLEM, SPIM)
» multi-modal molecular imaging (e.g. (Micro)-PET, (Micro)-SPECT)
» biomedical imaging (e.g. High-Field MRI, Phase contrast imaging)
Access to data services
Euro-BioImaging offers a wide range of image data services. Euro-BioImaging Nodes support their users in data management and quality control, primary data analysis and the transfer of large data sets to the home base. The BioImage Archive was launched as public central archive for biological and biomedical image data, which will make it easier for researchers around the world to store, share, access and analyse images. This wealth of scientific images can now start to be reused, reanalysed, and interconnected to create new knowledge. New computational tools for image analysis and processing accessible via the cloud will complement the offered services.
Access to training services
Euro-BioImaging offers training courses on many different cutting-edge imaging technologies for scientists as well as imaging facility operators.