The Slovak membership in the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) is pushing forward our research and development. Today’s working meeting of Richard Rasi, Deputy Prime Minister, and Fabiola Gianotti, CERN Director General, was even about the Slovak scientists, engineers and specialists involved in the development and production of components for sophisticated experiments in particle physics.
The Slovak Republic has been a member of CERN since its inception; it contributes to it by about five million Swiss francs a year, which equals approximately 4 million and 226 thousand Euros (from the budget chapter of the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sports of the Slovak Republic). Richard Rasi, Deputy Prime Minister, states that the return on our contribution is very high, up to 2:1. “The counter value is, for example, contracts that Slovak companies acquire from CERN for the delivery of components for building the technical infrastructure necessary for experimental research, such as superconducting magnet manipulators supplied by the Heavy Engineering Plant in Kosice. The steel plates for the huge ATLAS calorimeter experiment were produced in Nova Dubnica; lifting equipment in Presov, and electronics in Kosice,” said R. Rasi, adding that CERN membership is also important for the development of our scientific capacities.
Several major Slovak scientists currently work at CERN. The organization also provides career opportunities for young researchers, such as summer internships for college students.
CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) is a European organization for basic and applied research, particularly in particle physics, located in Meyrin, near Geneva, Switzerland. CERN currently has twenty-two Member States, including Slovakia.
Their most famous laboratory is the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The LHC synchrotron is the largest particle accelerator in the world, thanks to by which the Higgs boson was confirmed (2013 Nobel Prize) in 2012. In addition to the LHC, six other accelerators are in operation.
In addition to particle research, other discoveries and innovations have also been made in CERN laboratories, such as the World Wide Web (WWW) and Internet browser concepts in 1990.
Slovak Participation in CERN
Officially, the Slovak Republic participates in CERN activities through the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sports of the Slovak Republic, which established its advisory body − the Cooperation Committee of the Slovak Republic with CERN under the leadership of Branislav Sitar, former Vice President of CERN. This Committee coordinates the professional side of the participation of our specialists, which the SR delegates to CERN.
After seven years, Slovakia re-hosts the RECFA (Restricted European Committee for Future Accelerators) meeting. Fabiola Gianotti, CERN Director General, attended it in presence of Eckhard Elsen, Director of Research and Computing.