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Doctoral programme for innovators with X-rays and neutrons

Project description

Scientific 'ambassadors' will help industry exploit novel materials

Powerful X-ray and neutron sources and technologies are essential to the non-destructive characterisation of the nanoscale structure and dynamic interactions of materials. Harnessing these tools can help scientists understand and control materials’ structures to benefit society in fields from biomedicine and energy to consumer electronics and space exploration. The equipment for such characterisation is located at fewer than a hundred large research infrastructures worldwide. To streamline the exploitation of these facilities for industrial development, the EU-funded InnovaXN project will create a doctoral training network linking Europe’s world-class research facilities with industry through highly skilled young scientists.


Researchers trained in advanced materials characterisation and capable of exploiting the facilties available at research infrastructures (RIs) are needed to bridge the knowledge gap between Europe’s world-leading RIs and industry. These select individuals should be highly-skilled entrepreneurs and communicators in addition to being innovative researchers. The InnovaXN programme aims to create such uniquely-skilled ambassadors to industry by recruiting and training 40 Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs) who will carry out research on projects defined and realised in close collaboration with industry. The programme will link the ESRF and ILL RIs with industry through 40 research projects. The subject of these projects will comprise multiple research fields from the vast range of subjects of interest to industry that could be enhanced by studies at the RIs such as drug discovery and health, energy materials, environmental science, food science and micro-electronics.
InnovaXN will be a five-year programme. Research projects will be harvested through an open ideation and codesign procedure with industry. Two recruitment calls will be spaced twelve months apart. The duration of each ESR training period will typically be 36 months, with registration of the ESRs at Université Grenoble Alpes (UGA), a partner to the project, or other collaborating European universities.
InnovaXN aims to recruit the best candidates from a worldwide student base. InnovaXN is open to students from a wide range of disciplines including chemistry, life sciences (biochemistry, medicine), materials science, engineering, environmental science and physics. The ESRs will receive employment contracts at the ESRF or the ILL (each will recruit half of the students). The ESRs will be hosted in Grenoble at the EPN-Campus site for most of the duration of their research but for a period of secondment to the site of the industry partner of at least three months to gain experience of working in industry.


Net EU contribution
€ 3 254 400,00
38000 Grenoble

See on map

Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Rhône-Alpes Isère
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 6 508 800,00