Tibor Navracsics – Photo: Facebook

Navracsics: Szeged ELI-ALPS laser centre ‘future of Europe’

The ELI-ALPS laser centre in Szeged, in southern Hungary, is the future of Europe, Regional Development Minister Tibor Navracsics said on Thursday.

Addressing an event marking the research centre’s completion, Navracsics said it was the traditions, history and “heroes” of higher education, science and research in Szeged that had allowed the city to become one of Europe’s and the world’s research hubs.

The laser centre was made possible by the financial contributions of European Union taxpayers, the minister said.

EU Affairs Minister Janos Boka said the research being carried out in the ELI-ALPS centre was “unparalleled in Europe and possible worldwide”. Noting that preparations for the establishment of the centre began in 2008, he minister said he wanted to see similar projects realised in other Hungarian knowledge centres as well.

Energy Minister Csaba Lantos said Hungary’s conservative government was convinced that Hungary becoming a European and global leader in research and development was key to the country’s prosperity and economic growth.

The ELI-ALPS laser centre is the world’s most advanced laser research centre and a place where researchers will seek solutions to scientific, industrial, medical and energy challenges, he said.

The laser centre cost 81 billion forints (EUR 210.5m) to set up, with a total of 79 installation and collaborative research programmes having been carried out over the course of its completion.

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