Up to 12 companies at any one time can be based in the newly built Higgs Centre for Innovation, at the Royal Observatory of Edinburgh. Scientists, engineers and big data experts at the University of Edinburgh are lending their expertise to a newly opened centre that supports entrepreneurs.
They will work next to teams from the University and the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s UK Astronomy Technology Centre.
The Centre is named in honour of Professor Peter Higgs of the University’s School of Physics and Astronomy, awarded a Nobel Prize for Physics in 2013 for his theoretical prediction of the Higgs boson particle.
Professor Higgs came up with a theory for the particle, which is fundamental to the laws of physics, when he was a researcher at the University in the 1960s. Its existence was confirmed almost 50 years later, in 2012, by the CERN research facility near Geneva.
The Centre, operated by STFC in partnership with the University, will support academic research.
University PhD students in astronomy and astrophysics will be able to work directly with start-up companies on real-world problems. Laboratories and working spaces for researchers and facilities for businesses will be provided at the site.
It is funded by the UK Government and STFC.
Professor Higgs’ theoretical work could only be proven by collaboration. This reflects the aims and values of the Higgs Centre for Innovation, which brings scientists, engineers and students together for the purpose of bettering our understanding of space-related science and driving technological advancement.”
Professor Peter Mathieson, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, University of Edinburgh
Scotland has an outstanding reputation for science and innovation, and the Higgs Centre will harness this creativity, helping disruptive start-ups and entrepreneurs create the products of tomorrow.
Sam Gyimah, Minister for Universities, Science, Research & Innovation
Source: University of Edinburgh