The main goal of the Phantoms network is to support and co-ordinate European research initiatives in the field of mesoscopic systems, both at the fundamental and applied level. The operations of PHANTOMS II will build on the experience gained during the PHANTOMS I project (1992 - 1995) by extending its most successful activities, but it will also launch new initiatives to strengthen areas of weakness and adapt the network to a changing research environment.
The network co-ordination efforts will be focused on a selected range of R&D activities, which are expected to strategically impact on future developments in the mesoscopic domain and their long term applications.
Four broad areas of scientific study which together may yield novel, exploitable electronic and optoelectronic devices and systems will be addressed by the network:
- quantum electronics
- nanometer scale optoelectronics
- novel circuit architectures
To work towards the above mentioned objectives, the following tasks will be supported by the network :
- creation of the necessary platforms for research planning and co-ordination;
- information dissemination (newsletters, brochures, electronic networking, scientific reports and all other appropriate means);
- training of researchers through selected short term exchanges, schools and workshops, dedicated seminars;
- development of international links both for information exchanges and stimulation of research collaboration;
- intensive promotion of industrial participation in the network activities in order to inform the industry about progress made, provide feedback to the network on industrial interests, and stimulate the transfer of exploitable results to industry.
In addition, an operational link will be established with the Advanced Research Initiative (ARI) launched by the Proactive Branch of the Long Term Research Programme of DGIII, in order to provide inputs for the choice of priority themes, the submission of project programmes and the follow-up of the research activities.
Mesoscopic systems are man-made objects with sizes ranging from sub-micron down to near-atomic dimensions. Their applications in electronic systems is a novel discipline that has created high expectations following the fundamental discoveries made during the last decade in mesoscopic physics and technology.
The outstanding research activities of many European institutes has warranted a strong scientific position for Europe in this domain. However, the high complexity of the research and the related high costs necessitate strong collaborative efforts in a coherent European action to remain competitive with the US, Japan and South-East Asia.