Cyprus & World News

More than 30 projects underway at Cyprus Institute

28 November, 2013

More than 30 research projects are underway at the Cyprus Institute, which promotes research in areas such as energy, environment, technology in archaeology, computation – based science and technology.

In an interview with CNA, Chair of the Executive Committee of the Cyprus Institute (CyI) Dr Andreas Pittas said that the Institute has established partnerships with world-leading institutions for the development of each of its individual centres, such as with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of Illinois.

Dr Pittas told the Cyprus News Agency that MIT’s expertise in the field of natural gas is just one example on how the Institute’s international network of partners can provide a series of advantages.

The Institute operates under the aegis of the Cyprus Research and Educational Foundation (CREF), which is governed by a Board of Trustees, comprised of leading personalities of the international academic, political and business world. It is currently chaired by Professor Edouard Brézin, former president of the French Academy of Sciences and Professor at the Ecole Normale Supérieure.

The CyI is being developed by establishing research centers which address challenging problems that are important at both the regional and international levels. Its research centers are developed in partnership with leading institutions in the respective thematic areas. The Energy, Environment and Water Research Center (EEWRC) is developed in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Science and Technology in Archaeology Resarch CENTER (STARC) in partnership with the Centre de recherche et de restauration des musées de France (C2RMF), headquartered in the Louvre and the Computation – based Science and Technology Research Center (CaSToRC) in partnership with the University of Illinois.

Having launched its first center in 2007, the Cyprus Institute has secured a large number of research projects, including an ERC Advanced Grant. With only a few years in operation it has demonstrated its ability to attract scientists of international repute at all levels. The research centers also provide graduate education in the thematic areas of their concentration.

In his interview with CNA, Dr Pittas said that investments in targeted research, such the one carried out at the Institute, can bring huge medium and long term benefits to the economy and contribute to creating a new development model, transforming the economy into a knowledge-based one.

The Institute, he said, ranks above the average international standards and maintains a unique position in the region.

In realizing its educational mission, the Cyprus Institute offers Doctoral Degrees to a small, highly selective group of young scientists aspiring to become tomorrow’s leaders in academia and research.

Dr Pittas told CNA that within the few years of its operation, the Institute has managed to secure funds amounting to 15 million euro, which help creating new jobs for both Cypriot and foreign scientists.

The Cyprus Institute is developing a Computation-based Science and Technology Research Center (CaSToRC) that includes a Tier-1 high-performance computing (HPC) facility.

Currently there are several research areas within the Center, including: Computational particle physics based on Lattice QCD on GPU Architectures, Computational Fluid Dynamics methods for scientific and engineering applications, including climate modeling and turbulent mixing, Graph Partitioning Methods for Scientific Computing Applications, Visualization of scientific data and Cultural Heritage, Atomistic and multi-scale modeling of micro/nano-flows and materials and Development of HPC algorithms for more efficient massively parallel computations.

The Science and Technology in Archaeology Research Center (STARC) of The Cyprus Institute is devoted to the development, introduction and use of advanced science and technologies in the field of archaeology, cultural heritage and history of the region. Research scientists and doctoral students, often in partnership with national or international research organizations, utilize physical and chemical measurements with sophisticated instruments in a fixed and mobile laboratory to participate in collaborative research in Cyprus, the Eastern Mediterranean and Europe. They also take advantage of high performance computing capabilities hosted at the Cyprus Institute to perform research requiring intensive computing or data storage and management. New perspectives on archaeological and cultural heritage in the region are achieved through strong collaboration with research in climate, environment and unmanned aircraft at the Cyprus Institute.

The Energy, Environment and Water Research Center (EEWRC) was established in December 2007 as the first Research Center of the Cyprus Institute. The Center works in close collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, the Cyprus Research Promotion Foundation (RPF) and many national institutions and organizations in Cyprus and the region.

The Center strives to reach the highest standards of excellence and is increasingly recognized as a significant scientific resource for the region. Collaboration and exploitation of synergistic potentials with other CyI research centers represents a guiding principle of its work and cooperation and partnerships with national, international and European institutions forms an integral part of its activities.

Research at EEWRC is related to three major focus areas: achieving a low carbon economy via the adoption of measures for energy efficiency and the employment of renewable energies to reduce the dependence on hydrocarbon energy sources; understanding environmental integrity and global/climate change through observations, analytical analyses, and numerical modeling to derive effective mitigation and adaptation strategies; and enabling a sustainable management of water and other natural resources in arid and semi-arid environments.

The research agenda of the Center is realized through a number of flagship- as well as other projects that are largely funded through external, competitive funds and revolve around the following themes: Solar Energy and Desalination; Climate Change and Impact; Environmental Research and Monitoring; Water Research and Management; and Sustainability and Build Environment.