26th October 2017 – DIAS Annual Report Published
Thursday, 26th October 2017
DIAS annual report
The report documents the key activities undertaken by DIAS last year, including global research, involvement in major national scientific initiatives, and public engagement campaigns.
DIAS was founded by Éamon de Valera in 1940 as a fundamental research centre focused on three disciplines: Celtic Studies, Theoretical Physics and Cosmic Physics. In addition to conducting and publishing research, the organisation runs the Dunsink Observatory and coordinates a number of national initiatives on behalf of government.
Some of the key highlights in the 2016 DIAS annual report include:
- Attracting international talent to Ireland through competitive processes – DIAS funded 85 researchers last year. Of these, 30 per cent were Irish, with 70 per cent from other countries of origin.
- 115 international research visitors to DIAS from 20 countries.
- Success in securing competitive research funding including a €2.8m award to initiate the development of the first permanent sea-floor seismic, tsunami and marine acoustic observatory in the Irish NE Atlantic. The project is entitled “Insitu Marine Laboratory for Geosystems Research” (iMARL).
- Further development of the Irish Script on Screen initiative to the point that 365 manuscripts are now available online for researchers nationally and internationally. This online resource had over four million hits in 2016.
- High-level publications across high-impact journals (including Nature).
- Ongoing development of the iCRAG Centre for geosciences, in which DIAS is a leading partner.
- DIAS’s key role in the establishment of the iLOFAR (the European low-frequency radio telescope) site.
- High-profile international collaborations, including with the European Space Observatory, the European Space Agency, the James Webb Space Telescope endeavour, the High Energy Stereoscopic System (HESS) and the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA).
- 5,500 visitors to the Dunsink Observatory; and the installation of Meteor cameras at Dunsink.
- DIAS’s ongoing coordination of the Irish National Seismic Network, and the Seismology in Schools initiative.
- DIAS’s partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to run the national office for the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation. This office marked its twentieth anniversary in 2016.
Commenting today (26.10.17) on the publication of the annual report, Dr. Vincent Cunnane, Chairman of DIAS, said: “For DIAS, 2016 began with the deployment of Ocean Bottom Seismometers off the coast of Donegal and ended with a lecture on why experts disagree about the physics of climate change.
“In addition to our growing research output, we had a significant increase in public engagement over the year – through our own lectures and events, and our involvement in initiatives like Science Week and Culture Night. We also continued to enhance our international reputation, as can be seen from the high-level global partnerships in which we were involved and the high rates of interest from international researchers in conducting research at DIAS.
“In 2016, DIAS continued to contribute to the national and global knowledge pool, and to influence future developments in the study of our cosmos, our planet and our identity. We have been building on this work this year, and will be launching a new strategic plan in the coming months.”
DIAS’s 2016 annual report is available to download at: https://dias.ie/reports
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