The Flemish Minister Jo Brouns has announced the allocation of 21 million euros for companies and research institutions to develop technologies for the Einstein Telescope.
In an interview with the Belgian newspaper Het Belang van Limburg, the minister says that the Einstein Telescope ensures that the countries and the region where the underground telescope will be built are ‘guaranteed a place in the Champions League of the European economy for the coming decades.’ He is also convinced that this will give a huge boost to STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics).
If the Einstein Telescope is built in the border area of Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany, Minister Brouns estimates that a total of 350 to 500 million euros will have to be invested from Flanders. Previously, Flanders had already allocated 13 million euros to co-finance the current research phase into the feasibility.
The minister indicates that Flanders too will receive a huge innovative impulse. Several companies from Belgian Limburg are already working on new technologies. For example, Agrippa Cleantech from Hasselt is working on an automatic and very accurate leak detection system based on artificial intelligence. Interboring from Zonhoven is working on a reusable core barrel that can limit the spread of dust when cutting concrete in a challenging environment (250 meters underground). Battery packservice from Peer is researching how sustainable and modular battery units could provide the energy for the Einstein Telescope. Workshops Hengelhoef and Aperam from Genk are again working on an innovative way to produce ultra-vacuum tubes that are necessary for this project.