With 2019 in full swing, I’m excited by the many emerging scientific initiatives that align with the Molecular Foundry’s research portfolio and strategy, including quantum information science, microelectronics beyond Moore’s law, the interface between materials and biology, and data science, not to mention our local project to upgrade the Advanced Light Source to enable high-flux soft coherent x-rays. As a user facility whose mission is to serve the research needs of the global scientific community, we see these exciting areas and future capabilities as not only drawing on state-of-the-art nanoscience but also providing significant opportunities to advance its frontier.
Last month, the Foundry’s research and operations staff gathered at the Chabot Space and Science Center for a two-day retreat to assess where we are as an organization and discuss where we are going. We heard about four Berkeley lab initiatives from local leaders: quantum information science (QIS) from Thomas Schenkel; science with the upgraded ALS (ALS-U) from Andreas Scholl; genetically encoded composites (GECO) from Caroline Ajo-Franklin; and Beyond Moore’s Law from Ramamoorthy Ramesh and Dan Armbrust. Later in the retreat, Foundry staff discussed how our current research themes and priorities might be leveraged or evolve to ensure that our staff and users are best positioned to make an impact in these areas.
This exercise is the beginning of a process that will culminate in our DOE Triennial Review in June. At that time, we will discuss our past performance and present our plan for the future to our sponsor. We hope that you – our user community – continues to provide input to this vision as it evolves over the coming months, both through formal channels like the User Executive Committee (UEC) and informally through your staff contacts.
We also look forward to hearing from you and, in particular, seeing your research ideas in the Spring proposal call, which concludes March 31.
Have a terrific spring!