Tag Archives: university

A war rages in Ukraine. Researchers are called to take a stand, neighboring Universities are offering their aid

The Russian government’s invasion of Ukraine is roaring through the local and global research community. Academic activity in Ukraine has been essentially shut down until further notice. Serhiy Kvit, the head of the Ukrainian National Agency for Higher Education Quality Assurance and former minister of education and science, is also calling for academics around the world to take a stand against the war.

Image credits Ministry of Defense of Ukraine / Flickr.

The flames of war

War between two states in Europe was, arguably, not something many people expected to see, despite the mounting tensions between Ukraine and Russia since the annexation of Crimea in 2014. But this is exactly what we are witnessing today. Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, resounds with gunfire and bombs as I write these lines.

As a science journalist, I never expected (or desired) to write about an ongoing war; you, our readers, probably never expected to read about one here on ZME Science. But an event of such magnitude swallows everything in its wake, even the world of science and research. Following Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy declaring martial law in the country in the aftermath of the invasion, higher education in the country has been put on indefinite hold.

Science, it turns out, is not spared of the flames of war.

“[The] academic community can’t keep silence on this unheard-of war. You, academics, know Europe’s history of the 20th century the best, the history of the Second World War and its consequences for Europe and the world,” Kvit told University World News. “We call on universities, academic institutions in Europe and around the world to stand up with Ukraine against Putin’s regime, against ruining the fundamentals of peace, security and democracy in Europe and in the world.”

“It is our joint task – to defend democracy.”

Students and staff at universities across Ukraine have been told to stay at home, and their activity suspended, until further notice. School activity is also heavily disturbed, as families and teachers flee the hostilities. Kvit said that the fighting will invariably involve the death of Ukrainian civilians, from those fighting the invasion to children. Such reports are already coming in, unfortunately.

The suspension of academic life is meant to give civilians the opportunity to keep themselves safe. Kvit explains that the situation is dire, a “real war, the shelling of military infrastructure, airports and multiple peaceful cities around Ukraine […] Putin’s soldiers seizing Ukrainian cities and towns”. Under these circumstances, academic life in Ukraine cannot continue as normal.

He calls on researchers around the world to take a stand and issue messages to international organizations, representatives of governments, other researchers, and the wide public against the Russian government’s invasion.

Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, Lviv, Ukraine.

Ukraine’s plea is already being answered in some regrds. Germany’s Foreign Office has “recommended” Universities in the country freeze relations with Russia, “in particular scientific projects”, says Peter-André Alt, president of the German Rectors’ Conference (HRK).

“This is a deeply depressing day. Our solidarity applies to the entire Ukrainian population and, above all, to our university partners,” he said for University World News. “We are very concerned about the life and well-being of Ukrainian scientists and students. The German universities will assist them within the limits of their possibilities.”

“It is also foreseeable that these developments will inflict severe damage on German-Russian scientific relations. We will have to examine the consequences accordingly.”

The European Union as a whole is also discussing whether to exclude Russia from every and all research networks and associated infrastructure, according to Science|Business. An extraordinary European Council meeting is set for later today to discuss this alongside other measures. However, Ukrainian high-ranking officials accuse the rest of Europe of not doing nearly enough.

Germany is host to over 8,200 Ukrainian-native students — it represents one of the most important countries of origin for higher education students in Germany. Authorities are now working out how to best care for these students as they face the prospect of their families embroiled in the conflict at home. At present, there are 257 collaborative projects between the two countries, which see the collaboration of 113 German and 89 Ukrainian universities; how these projects evolve in the future hinges on the developments in the current war.

“The Russian attack against Ukraine has serious consequences for our relations in science and academia, which had been built with confidence and hope for two decades and are now threatened by illegitimate assaults against international law,” said Alt.

Some universities have been preparing for such a scenario over the last few weeks. The Igor Sikorsky Polytechnic Institute in Kyiv has been preparing video materials informing students of evacuation routes and shelters on campus and releasing fresh instructions from their emergency management committee. Other educational institutions in less-affected areas of Ukraine seem to be continuing their activity remotely. One example is in the city of Lviv, very close to the Polish-Ukrainian border.

“The educational process at the university continues remotely,” Volodymyr Melnyk, the rector of the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv said in a statement today. “Our task is to act in an organized and responsible manner, consolidate efforts and maintain order”.

Academic institutions in countries bordering Ukraine have also offered their support. The Latvian students association urged their government to help students fleeing Ukraine to continue their studies in Latvia. The rectors of Romania’s two largest universities have also released statements in support of Ukrainian refugees and offering support to protect the assets and heritage of Ukrainian universities.

“I think it is our duty to show solidarity and come up with concrete proposals to support students, professors, and their families,” said Marian Preda, the rector of the University of Bucharest.

The University of Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania.

Preda says universities and educational centers in Romania should help safeguard the documents and books of their Ukrainian counterparts from the destruction caused by war. Meanwhile, Daniel David, rector of Babeș-Bolyai University in the city of Cluj-Napoca urged all rectors in Romania to coordinate efforts to integrate academics feeling Ukraine into higher education and research institutions in Romania. He adds that the university received multiple cooperation requests over the past weeks from researchers in Ukraine.

“Those researchers, as well as Romania and our universities could transform this unfortunate brain drain from Ukraine,” he said.

As a Romanian, I can attest that refugees from Ukraine are already crossing the border, fleeing the war. Local authorities in several cities have already offered their support, and there is an impressive (and heartwarming) level of effort in the public sphere to welcome house and help these refugees. The response at the level of the government is so far disappointing, however. Other countries neighboring Ukraine, such as Poland, are also working hard to accommodate the sudden influx of people; according to my (few) friends there, there is a similar effort by the common people to help Ukrainians crossing the border with food, lodging, and guidance, as well as a much more robust effort from the government.

As a journalist and someone who has been passionate about science and knowledge my whole life, I can only applaud international efforts to safeguard Ukrainian researchers and their work. These are dark days we are living, but they will only become brighter if we help those in need, and fight for what’s right.

Salmonela phage.

New U.S. Center to research how viruses can help us overcome drug resistance

In a bid to fight drug-resistant infections, one group of U.S. researchers is trying to include bacteria-munching viruses on our list of available treatments.

Salmonela phage.

Salmonela phage PA13076.
Image credits microbiologybytes / Flickr.

Amid the rise of drug-resistant bacteria and the string of outbreaks in recent years — most notably the Ebola virus in Africa, Zika in South America, and the Nipah virus outbreak in India — it may feel like everything microscopic is out to get us. But fret not: nature doesn’t discriminate; there’s something to infect everything under the sun.

One group of researchers from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) plans to cash in on this by using bacteria-hunting viruses — phages — to knock out drug-resistant infections, the university reported recently.

The enemy of my enemy

The initiative stems from the efforts of UCSD researchers who 2 years ago used phages to save a colleague’s life. In 2015, UCSD psychologist Tom Patterson was hospitalized after a drug-resistant strain of the bacterium Acinetobacter baumannii invaded his pancreas during a vacation in Egypt. Antibiotic treatment failed and Patterson fell into a coma. His wife, UCSD epidemiologist Steffanie Strathdee, launched an international effort to find the right phage to cure him — and, using strains donated by biotech AmpliPhi Biosciences, Texas A&M University, and the U.S. Navy, she did.

Building on that success, the team wants to expand the use of phage therapy in the U.S. Phages are naturally-occurring strains of viruses that live in all sorts of environments and prey on bacteria. They’re really, really good at killing bacteria, much more so than any antibiotics we’ve developed. They’re also single-minded in their purpose, and phage therapy has little to no side effects. However, it’s not flawless: each phage targets only a specific strain of bacteria — so actually using them as a treatment means sifting through millions of strains to find the one that works.

Patterson received some of the phages intravenously — considered to be a risky option, as toxins produced by bacteria used to grow the phages could linger in the mixture. The team’s success in Petterson’s case helped cement their belief that phage therapy can bring an important contribution to modern medicine.

Past pushes towards phage therapy across the globe, however, have fared quite poorly, and the approach isn’t widely considered as a viable treatment path. Phages’ ability to attack a single strain at a time is what gave researchers the most trouble and, for many, signaled that it’s simply not worth pursuing. Previous phage clinical testing, such as an EU-sponsored trial known as PhagoBurn, haven’t been very successful — in part because it focused on treating burn wounds, which typically involve several strains of bacteria. Still, there were some encouraging results regarding phage therapy, mostly from centers in Georgia and Poland. In the context of rising antibiotic-resistance, a few U.S. companies and research centers have also started reconsidering phage therapy.

Since Patterson’s recovery, the UCSD team has successfully cleared infections in five more people with phage cocktails under a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) process designed for emergencies where no approved treatments are available. However, these are anecdotal evidence, and any phage therapy that has the slightest hope of getting FDA approval needs reliable evidence that it’s safe and effective. That kind of evidence can only be brought to bear following structured clinical trials.

The team hopes their new center will help provide such evidence. A first in North America, the center will initially consist of 16 UCSD researchers and physicians. It will launch with a 3-year, $1.2 million grant from UCSD. Christened the Center for Innovative Phage Applications and Therapeutics (IPATH), it won’t manufacture any phage treatments itself but will collaborate with academia and companies on clinical trials. Initially, IPATH will focus on treating patients suffering from chronic drug-resistant infections related to organ transplants, implanted devices (e.g. pacemakers or joints), and cystic fibrosis.

The trials to be carried out at IPATH will also draw wisdom from past failures with phage therapy. Most notably, it will focus on patients infected with a single (and known) bacterial strain. While it may be difficult to tease out the effects of phage therapy alone (as these patients are undergoing antibiotic treatment, and discontinuing them isn’t an option) the team expects phage therapy to eventually be used in tandem with antibiotics.

One of the main hurdles IPATH collaborators will have to overcome is that current drug approval systems just aren’t suited to accommodate phage therapy. They’re meant to estimate single compounds that can affect patients more or less equally — phage therapy, on the other hand, requires mixes of viruses that need to be tailored for each individual. One potential workaround to this issue would be to get approval for an entire library of phages from which doctors can later create custom treatments. In the meantime, the UCSD team plans to keep securing phages for individual cases under FDA’s emergency pathway, Strathdee says.

Georgia State’s computer warning system leaves no student behind on graduation

Georgia State University, Atlanta, has released the results of its automated warning system for students who struggle with their classes. And so far, the data is more than encouraging.

Image credits Rob Towne / Pixabay.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed as a student. In between the optimism of youth and their lack of experience, they rarely ask academic advisors for help when they need it. I should know, because I never do it, either. With this in mind, GSU has pioneered an advance warning system that tracks their progress and attempts to nip their hardships in the bud.

“They’re either the high-achievers who don’t need much help, or students who are already failing out of their classes,” says Allison Calhoun-Brown, a political scientist who oversees advising at Georgia State University (GSU) in Atlanta.

“What we need is an early warning system,” she adds.

Early alert

Such a system should identify which students need help long before the problem becomes apparent. GSU’s faculty showed that their system is on the right track. At the annual meeting of AAAS on Sunday, the University’s vice provost Timothy Renick discussed the system’s results.

“We’ve done over 200,000 interventions,” he said.

Each intervention took place between GSU advisors and undergraduate students who were flagged by the system as requiring help. The analysis is fully handled by the computer algorithm, without any human input. In the majority of cases, the warnings were based on subtle signs which neither the faculty nor the students themselves would notice — such as getting a B- rather than a B+ on a particular course.

Being flagged by the system in and of itself doesn’t impact the student’s progress in any way — as GSU puts it, it’s “not a grade and is not reported in the student’s academic record.” What it does is give the students a chance to improve on their weak points before they can put a dent on their achievements by the end of the semester.

Students who seemed to be dropping the ball on one course were sent an email detailing university resources that could help them succeed. Those whose progress followed this pattern in two or more courses the advisers invited to discuss and understand what was pulling them down.

“Sometimes the student has just chosen the wrong courses or taken on too much at once,” says Calhoun-Brown. “Or sometimes we found that they needed extra help with writing or math skills. Some needed help with time management.”

Closing the gap

Tim Renick talking about the early warning program.
Image credits Accesstocompletion.

GSU’s system is effective because it has a lot of data to work with. By drawing “2.5 million grades and 140,000 student records”, the system can find subtle statistical cues that a student is heading for academic success or struggling to pass a course. It has identified over 800 combinations of indicators — for example difficulties in following a course that formed the basis for later ones in the degree — that are strongly correlated with an undergraduate’s risk of graduating late or dropping out of school altogether.

“At large public universities that aren’t particularly well-resourced, like Georgia State, [students] typically haven’t gotten that kind of attention. We’re finding that the change to give them that kind of support is making a big, big difference,” Renick said. “But the reality is that, even with the best intentions, Georgia State couldn’t have done this five or six years ago. We need the big data and the analytics platforms to allow us to do this.”

“The biggest misconception out there is that this completion agenda is a move toward dumbing down higher education so more students can graduate. And I think it’s the opposite,” he said. “It’s providing, for the first time, the opportunity for at-risk students to do real college work and succeed in areas where, perhaps, they didn’t have the chance in the past.”

And so far, it’s been really successful. Before its implementation four years ago, GSU had similar achievement gaps to other universities with low-income students — with “at risk” students having roughly 10% lower graduation rates. Now, there is “no achievement gap” Calhoun-Brown added. The University has risen its overall graduation rates by 22% during this time. Faculty members also noted that the number of African American students who graduate with science-related degrees has doubled over this period.

These results come down to better student retention not changes to the courses or student body, Renick says. By encouraging and helping students to work through their difficulties, the university ensures higher rates of graduation for traditionally at-risk students and more difficult courses.

“Over the same years that we were seeing these huge increases in STEM graduates, we only increased the size of our admitted freshman and transfer classes by about 4%,” he explained.

Other universities have also shown interest in the system, with 11 US institutions preparing to launch trials on their own campuses. Some South African universities have also expressed interest in adopting similar systems, to help them tackle their own racial achievement gaps — some of the largest in the world.


2013-2014 World’s top 400 Universities: Caltech, Harvard, Oxford on the podium

worlds_top_universities_rankingRecently the Times Higher Education global ranking of the top 400 universities in the world has been unveiled. For the third time in a row, California Institute of Technology ranks on top, while Harvard University, Oxford University, Stanford University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology round out the top five schools in the 2013–2014 rankings.

The Times Higher Education global ranking employs 13 carefully calibrated performance indicators to rank the top Universities of the world, which reflect research (worth 30 percent of a school’s overall ranking score), teaching (30 percent), citations (30 percent), international outlook (which includes the total numbers of international students and faculty and the ratio of scholarly papers with international collaborators, 7.5 percent), and industry income (a measure of innovation, 2.5 percent.

Separate rankings by continent (Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, Oceania, South America) and subject (Arts & Humanities, Clinical, Pre-Clinical & Health, Engineering & Technology, Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, Social Sciences) have also been made and can be seen on the website.

Here are the top 200 Universities in the world

1California Institute of TechnologyUnited States


2Harvard UniversityUnited States


2University of OxfordUnited Kingdom


4Stanford UniversityUnited States


5Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyUnited States


6Princeton UniversityUnited States


7University of CambridgeUnited Kingdom


8University of California, BerkeleyUnited States


9University of ChicagoUnited States


10Imperial College LondonUnited Kingdom


11Yale UniversityUnited States


12University of California, Los AngelesUnited States


13Columbia UniversityUnited States


14ETH Zürich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology ZürichSwitzerland


15Johns Hopkins UniversityUnited States


16University of PennsylvaniaUnited States


17Duke UniversityUnited States


18University of MichiganUnited States


19Cornell UniversityUnited States


20University of TorontoCanada


21University College LondonUnited Kingdom


22Northwestern UniversityUnited States


23The University of TokyoJapan


24Carnegie Mellon UniversityUnited States


25University of WashingtonUnited States


26National University of SingaporeSingapore


27University of Texas at AustinUnited States


28Georgia Institute of TechnologyUnited States


29University of Illinois at Urbana ChampaignUnited States


30University of Wisconsin-MadisonUnited States


31University of British ColumbiaCanada


32London School of Economics and Political ScienceUnited Kingdom


33University of California, Santa BarbaraUnited States


34University of MelbourneAustralia


35McGill UniversityCanada


36Karolinska InstituteSweden


37École Polytechnique Fédérale de LausanneSwitzerland


38King’s College LondonUnited Kingdom


39University of EdinburghUnited Kingdom


40New York UniversityUnited States


40University of California, San DiegoUnited States


42Washington University in St LouisUnited States


43The University of Hong KongHong Kong


44Seoul National UniversityRepublic of Korea


45Peking UniversityChina


46University of MinnesotaUnited States


47University of North Carolina at Chapel HillUnited States


48Australian National UniversityAustralia


49Pennsylvania State UniversityUnited States


50Tsinghua UniversityChina


50Boston UniversityUnited States


52Kyoto UniversityJapan


52Brown UniversityUnited States


52University of California, DavisUnited States


55Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität MünchenGermany


56Korea Advanced Institute of Science and TechnologyRepublic of Korea


57Hong Kong University of Science and TechnologyHong Kong


58University of ManchesterUnited Kingdom


59Ohio State UniversityUnited States


60Pohang University of Science and TechnologyRepublic of Korea


61KU LeuvenBelgium


62Purdue UniversityUnited States


63Georg-August-Universität GöttingenGermany


63University of Queensland AustraliaAustralia


65Rice UniversityUnited States


65École Normale SupérieureFrance


67Leiden UniversityNetherlands


68Universität HeidelbergGermany


69Delft University of TechnologyNetherlands


70University of Southern CaliforniaUnited States


70École PolytechniqueFrance


72University of SydneyAustralia


73Erasmus University RotterdamNetherlands


74Universität BaselSwitzerland


74Utrecht UniversityNetherlands


76Nanyang Technological UniversitySingapore


77Wageningen University and Research CenterNetherlands


78University of PittsburghUnited States


79University of BristolUnited Kingdom


80Emory UniversityUnited States


80Durham UniversityUnited Kingdom


80Tufts UniversityUnited States


83University of AmsterdamNetherlands


83Michigan State UniversityUnited States


85Ghent UniversityBelgium


86Freie Universität BerlinGermany


87Technische Universität MünchenGermany


88Case Western Reserve UniversityUnited States


88Vanderbilt UniversityUnited States


90University of Notre DameUnited States


91Monash UniversityAustralia


92McMaster UniversityCanada


93University of California, IrvineUnited States


94Humboldt-Universität zu BerlinGermany


95University of RochesterUnited States


96Université Pierre et Marie CurieFrance


97University of Colorado BoulderUnited States


98University of GroningenNetherlands


98Maastricht UniversityNetherlands


100University of HelsinkiFinland


100University of YorkUnited Kingdom


102Royal Holloway, University of LondonUnited Kingdom


103Rutgers, The State University of New JerseyUnited States


103Stockholm UniversitySweden


103University of ArizonaUnited States


106University of MontrealCanada


106Eindhoven University of TechnologyNetherlands


108University of Maryland, College ParkUnited States


109Chinese University of Hong KongHong Kong


109University of AlbertaCanada


111Uppsala UniversitySweden


112University of VirginiaUnited States


112University of SheffieldUnited Kingdom


114University of New South WalesAustralia


114Université Paris-SudFrance


114Queen Mary, University of LondonUnited Kingdom


117KTH Royal Institute of TechnologySweden


117University of St AndrewsUnited Kingdom


117Technical University of DenmarkDenmark


117University of GlasgowUnited Kingdom


121University of SussexUnited Kingdom


121University of ZürichSwitzerland


123Lund UniversitySweden


124University of GenevaSwitzerland


125Tokyo Institute of TechnologyJapan


126Dartmouth CollegeUnited States


126University of Cape TownSouth Africa


128University of FloridaUnited States


129RWTH Aachen UniversityGermany


129Trinity College DublinRepublic of Ireland


131Radboud University NijmegenNetherlands


132Université de LausanneSwitzerland


132Indiana UniversityUnited States


132University of MassachusettsUnited States


135Boston CollegeUnited States


136University of California, Santa CruzUnited States


137Lancaster UniversityUnited Kingdom


138Aarhus UniversityDenmark


139University of LeedsUnited Kingdom


139Colorado School of MinesUnited States


141University of WarwickUnited Kingdom


142National Taiwan UniversityTaiwan


143University of UtahUnited States


144Osaka UniversityJapan


144VU University AmsterdamNetherlands


146University of SouthamptonUnited Kingdom


146Arizona State UniversityUnited States


148University of ExeterUnited Kingdom


148University of California, RiversideUnited States


150Tohoku UniversityJapan


150University of CopenhagenDenmark


152Albert-Ludwigs-Universität FreiburgGermany


153University of BirminghamUnited Kingdom


154Karlsruhe Institute of TechnologyGermany


155Université Joseph Fourier, GrenobleFrance


156École Normale Supérieure de LyonFrance


157University of BernSwitzerland


157University of NottinghamUnited Kingdom


159Texas A&M UniversityUnited States


160Georgetown UniversityUnited States


161University of IowaUnited States


161University College DublinRepublic of Ireland


161University of LeicesterUnited Kingdom


164University of AntwerpBelgium


164Pompeu Fabra UniversitySpain


164Brandeis UniversityUnited States


164University of AucklandNew Zealand


168University of Western AustraliaAustralia


169University of LiverpoolUnited Kingdom


170University of TwenteNetherlands


170University of ViennaAustria


172Yeshiva UniversityUnited States


172Université Catholique de LouvainBelgium


174University of DelawareUnited States


174University of East AngliaUnited Kingdom


176University at BuffaloUnited States


176Université Libre de BruxellesBelgium


178Université Paris Diderot – Paris 7France


178Stony Brook UniversityUnited States


180Wake Forest UniversityUnited States


181Universität BonnGermany


181Rensselaer Polytechnic InstituteUnited States


183Iowa State UniversityUnited States


184Northeastern UniversityUnited States


185University of OsloNorway


185University of MiamiUnited States


185University of OttawaCanada


188University of AberdeenUnited Kingdom


188The University of Texas at DallasUnited States


190Yonsei UniversityRepublic of Korea


191Hebrew University of JerusalemIsrael


191University of Illinois at ChicagoUnited States


193Mines ParisTechFrance


194University of ReadingUnited Kingdom


194George Washington UniversityUnited States


196University of DundeeUnited Kingdom


197Florida Institute of TechnologyUnited States


198Newcastle UniversityUnited Kingdom


199Boğaziçi UniversityTurkey


199Tel Aviv UniversityIsrael

Scientists create the first molecular transistor

Researchers from Yale University succeeded in what seemed to be an impossible task: they’ve created a transistor from a single molecule. In case you don’t know, a transistor is a “semiconductor device commonly used to amplify or switch electronic signals” (via wikipedia).


The team showed that using a single benzene molecule attached to gold contacts is just as good as the regular silicone transistor. Also, by modifying the voltage applied through the contacts, they were able to control the current that was going through the molecule.

“We were able to allow current to get through when it was low, and stopping the current when it was high,” says Mark Reed, Professor of Engineering & Applied Science at Yale.

The importance of this discovery should not be underestimated; it could prove to be very useful, especially in computer circuits, because common transistors are not feasible at such small scales, and this may very well be another step towards the next generation of computers. However, researchers underlined the fact that fast molecular computers are probably decades away.

“We’re not about to create the next generation of integrated circuits,” he said. “But after many years of work gearing up to this, we have fulfilled a decade-long quest and shown that molecules can act as transistors.”

The world’s most advanced microscope


It’s the equivalent of taking the Hubble telescope (before it was damaged) and directing it towards atoms and molecules instead of stars and galaxies, according to Gianluigi Botton, director of the new Canadian Centre for Electron Microscopy at McMaster, where the world’s most advanced and powerful microscope works.

It’s called Titan 80-300 Cubed and it was installed in the summer, and since then it passed several tests and challenges, quickly passing each and everyone of them, gaining more and more attention from the media and scientists.

“We are certainly the first university in the world with a microscope of such a high calibre,” says Botton. “With this microscope we can now easily identify atoms, measure their chemical state and even probe the electrons that bind them together.”

“The addition of the Titan 80-300 Cubed to the Centre’s suite of microscopy instruments that include a Titan cryo-in situ solidifies Ontario’s and Canada’s lead in nanotechnology, and places us among the world’s most advanced materials research institutions,” says Mo Elbestawi McMaster’s vice-president, Research and International Affairs.

A few days ago, a group of elite international scientists were invited to test it, and they were absolutely amazed by what it can do.

“They were astounded by its capability, and by the fact that there is such support in this country for a venture of this magnitude,” said John Capone, Dean of Science. “We should be very proud that McMaster has taken the initiative to secure this facility. There are many applications for it in life sciences. This particular instrument will enable many new discoveries in the areas of fundamental biological and physical sciences that will help us to better understand the nature of diseases and the development of new cures.”

Built in Holland, this wonder of technology will be used to produce more efficient lighting, better solar cells, drug delivery materials and other cures, making it worth the $15 million it cost.