Partners & Financiers

The Partners

University of Liège

Together with other Belgian universities, the University of Liège has recently joined the Virgo consortium, with the aim of actively contributing to the development and exploitation of existing and future gravitational wave detectors.
From an underground and urban point of view, participation in the E-TEST project allows University of Liège to become a central actor in the characterization of the underground of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine, providing a unique in situ test site on a scale never before achieved.
E-TEST offers unique opportunities for collaboration and knowledge transfer across borders with public and private partners and to develop complementary activities for the benefit of the economic development of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine.

Interface Enterprises-University of Liège

The Interface Entreprises ULiège (ITF ULiège) is the ULiège Technology Transfer Office (TTO) and carefully guides promising ideas from the University of Liège to the market through the technology transfer process. In addition, ITF ULiège is committed to bringing significant value to the Society. This is achieved by linking revolutionary public discoveries to the needs of industry. It’s about developing partnerships with the right companies that will turn research into products that benefit both people and the economy. ITF ULiège is committed to supporting innovation, leading the transfer of knowledge, stimulating regional development, initiating collaborative research and encouraging creativity.
ITF ULiège is also a recognised intermediary for economic growth in the Interreg IV- and V-B North West Europe projects: Fasilis, IN2LifeSciences, B4H and B4H capitalisation call.
ITF ULiège is a partner of 3 walloon science parks (LSP, NOVALIS, CREALIS) and supports the innovation strategy, knowledge transfer, SME development and collaborative research.
ITF ULiège has been and is still actively involved as a partner or coordinator in multiple INTERREG A, B & C projects for over 17 years, as well as in the 7th Framework Programme and H2020: Heartbeat of Life Sciences, Transcend, Skills3, BusyBee, Push GR, wearIT4health, IN FLOW, and is the coordinator of the E-TEST project.

Mrs Annick Pierrard
General Management + General Communication
+32 4 349 85 36
Mr Julien Dumoulin
Financial/Public Tenders/Administration matters
+32 4 349 85 31

Precision Mechatronics Laboratory (PML)
Precision Mechatronics Laboratory (PML) is developing instrumentation and strategies for actively measuring and controlling the vibrations of structures. Over the years, it has developed an internationally renown expertise in high precision control of large instruments dedicated to experimental physics, including gravitational wave detectors, particle colliders, segmented ground and space telescopes, satellites and light sources.
In the E-TEST project, PML will bring its expertise for developing innovative active seismic isolation system for the prototype of large suspended cryogenic mirror. The isolated platform will use high-resolution optical inertial sensors, and will allow to disconnect the mirror from ground motion by several order of magnitudes, down to periods larger than one minute !

Mr Christophe Collette
Scientific Leadpartner – Prototype -Development of the seismic isolation system in WP1
+32 4 366 91 52
Mr Ameer Sider
Phd. Student – In charge of the seismic isolation system – WP1
+32 487397753
Mr Shashank Pathak
Geophysics Group – Expert in underground models for ETEST
+32 466 148 023
Mr Cédric Dumoulin
Post-Doc – Expert in sensor and finite element modeling for the WP1
+32 2 650 27 57
Mr Vishnu G Nair
Post-Doc – Expert in sensor and finite element modeling for the WP1

Urban and Environmental Engineering (UEE)
UEE has internationally recognized expertise in the field of applied geo-sciences and underground technology and more specifically in this project in geophysical imaging and hydro-geological modeling which are fundamental in the planning and design of an Einstein Telescope buried at several hundred meters deep where geological conditions are uncertain.
E-TEST gives the opportunity to participate in a unique project and to set-up an underground laboratory that will attract researchers internationally and provide testing grounds for companies active in R&D methods and systems following a science-to-business model.

Mr Frédéric Nguyen
Scientific Leadpartner – Geology
+32 4 366 37 97
Mr Alain Dassargues
Professor in Hydrogeology
+32 4 366 23 76
Mr Philippe Orban
Senior researcher – Hydrogeology
+32 4 366 23 59
Mr Yannick Forth
PhD – Hydrogeophysic characterization and monitoring
+ 49 177 68 73 162
Mr Mathieu Veeckmans
PhD researcher  – Hydrogeology characterization, monitoring, groundwater modelling

Georisks and Environment (GEO-ENV)
The Georisk and Environment(Geo-ENV) unit from the Department of Geology at the University of Liège works on the integration of various geohazard assessment approaches. This integration is considered at different spatial and temporal scales using GIS and remote sensing techniques, subsurface imaging through various geophysical and seismological methods, geological and numerical modelling as well as visualization (VR).
The E-test project will benefit from the related Geo-ENV expertise, in order to study and model the subsurface conditions and processes in the EMR region.

Mr Hans-Balder Havenith
Professor in Geohazard Assessment
+32 4 366 93 16
Mrs Camille Baudinet
Mrs Marine Julemont
Mrs Léna Cauchie
Post Doc Researcher
+32 4 366 22 86

Center Spatial de Liège (CSL)
Centre Spatial de Liège (CSL) is recognized as a center of excellence in optics, mainly dedicated to the development of space instruments and their calibration for more than 50 years. Especially, opto-thermo-mechanical behaviors under vacuum and cryogenic conditions are regularly performed. CSL has participated to a large number of missions of the ESA, NASA, or CNES.

Mr Jérôme Loicq
Scientific Leadpartner – Prototype
+32 4 382 46 46

Mr Jean-Yves Plesseria
Research Engineer – Vacuum system and cryogenics
+32 4 382 46 55
Mr Bao Long Le Van
Research Engineer – Vacuum system and cryogenics
+32 4 382 46 67
Mr Jesus Vilaboa Perez
PhD Optics – Characterization of the ET mirrors
+34 627 88 56 58

Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT

With around 570 employees and more than 19,500 m² net floor space the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology (ILT) is worldwide one of the most important development and contract research institutes of its specific field. The activities cover a wide range of areas such as the development of new laser beam sources and components, precise laser based metrology, testing technology and industrial laser processes. This includes laser cutting, caving, drilling, welding and soldering as well as surface treatment, micro processing and additive manufacturing.
Furthermore, the Fraunhofer ILT is engaged in laser plant technology, process control, modelling and simulation as well as in the entire system technology. We offer feasibility studies, process qualification and laser integration in customer specific manufacturing lines.
The Fraunhofer ILT is part of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, with 74 institutes, more than 28,000 employees and an annual research budget of 2.8 billion euros.
Within the E-Test Project, the Fraunoher ILT’s work is focused on the development of a beam source at a center wavelength of 2 micron. To this end, we contribute our expertise from areas such as fiber and solid-state lasers as well as beam stabilization and shaping. Furthermore, we cooperate with the partners in the fields of optical components and detectors.

Mr Hans-Dieter Hoffmann
Expert and Consultant in Laser Design
+49 241 8906 206
Mr Peter Loosen
Expert and Consultant in Laser Design
+49 241 8906 162
Mr Oliver Fitzau
Project Manager, Research Scientist Laser Development
+49 241 8906 442
Mr Marco Höfer
Research Scientist Laser Development
+49 241 8906 128

Mrs Pelin Cebeci
Research Scientist Laser Development
+49 241 8906 8028

Mr Martin Giesberts
Research Scientist Laser Development
+49 241 8906 341

RWTH Aachen University

RWTH Aachen University is the largest technical university in Germany and one of its top universities. Roughly, 45.000 students are educated at the university. It exploits strong research networks and the intellectual curiosity of its staff to address bold scientific questions, transfer forefront knowledge and drive innovative discoveries that impact global challenges.

Geologists and Physicists from RWTH participate in E-TEST. They bring along a broad expertise in all relevant geological fields and basic research in physics. The geologists contribute their experience to the exploitation of the underground site in the Euregio while the physicists develop sensors and actuators for the high precision mirrors for ET and other applications.

Mr Achim Stahl
Coordinating Scientist (physics)
III. Physikalisches Institut B
+49 241 80 27302

Mr Florian Wellmann
Scientist – group leader geology
Aachen Institute for Advanced Study in Computational Engineering Science
+49 241 80 98271
Mr Stefan Back
2D seismic operation
Geological Institute
+49 241 80 93617
Mr Thomas Hebbeker
Scientist – group leader physics
III. Physikalisches Institut A
+49 241 80 27331
Mr Markus Merschmeyer
Project Manager
III. Physikalisches Institut A
+49 241 80 27274
Mr Robert Joppe
Scientist – graduate student physics
III. Physikalisches Institut A
+49 241 80 27327
Mr Oliver Pooth
Scientist / Project Manager
III. Physikalisches Institut B
+49 241 80 27303
Mr Tim Kuhlbusch
Scientist – graduate student physics
III. Physikalisches Institut B
+49 241 80 27269
Mr Thomas Rüde
Scientist – group leader geology
Chair of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
+49 241 80 95743
Mr Florian Amann
Scientist – group leader geology
Chair of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
+49 241 80 95740
Mr Klaus Baier
Project Manager
Chair of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
+49 241 80 96771
Mr Peter Kukla
Scientist – group leader geology
School of Geoscience, Energy and Mineral Resources Group
+49 241 80 95720
Mr Janos Urai
Structural Geology, Tectonics, Geomechanics
+49 241 80 95723
Mr Pooya Hamdi
Senior scientist
Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
+49 241 897130
Mr Jonathan Zinser
Scientist – graduate student engineering geology
Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
+49 241 80 96782
Mr Klaus Reicherter
Scientist – group leader geology
Chair of Neotectonics and Natural Hazards
+49 242 80 95722
 Mr Marius Waldvogel
2 D seismic operation, regional geology, boreholes, 3D model
Geological Institute
+49 241 80 95541
Mrs Surana Nives
RWTH Aachen Communication

Hasselt University

The University of Hasselt is a regional University with seven faculties, six research institutes, 6,500 students and 1,400 researchers and staff. UHasselt portraits itself as a civic university and is strongly committed to the Region and the world. UHasselt was rated as 17 in the world university ranking in 2017 between universities with less than 5000 students. The growth in student numbers underlines the attractiveness of the University education but also the connection to leading international research.

UHasselt‘s research policy is focused on research in a number of spearhead areas (green energy, energy storage, new materials such as electronic and quantum materials, ICT, life sciences, clean technology, biostatistics, traffic safety and mobility). In these multidisciplinary domains, the research institutes of Hasselt University combine fundamental and applied research, including contract research for regional and international industry and organizations. The Universities Hasselt and Maastricht are currently working together on the platform “the Transnational University Limburg (tUL)”.

At the UHasselt Institute for Materials Research imo-imomec (, expertise from physicists, engineers and chemists is combined to conduct research for a sustainable world and EU priority research in areas such as “Key-Enabling Technologies”.

The Quantum Photonics group, where the research is planned, is part of a strong international collaboration in optics, photonics and Quantum Technology. Specifically, the group is part of the EU Quantum Flagship activities for which the Prof. Dr. Nesladek is a Belgian representative to the QCN (Quantum Computing Network). The group has strong international expertise in quantum technology, optics and photonics and develops quantum sensors and metrology applications with a long tradition in photon detection and development of photodetectors.

In the E-TEST project, UHasselt will optimize the photon detection in the IR region, more specific for the 1.8 – 2. 5 micron range and work on obtaining higher detection sensitivity by using quantum methodologies.

Mrs Annelies Stockmans
Administrative support
Research Coordination Office
+32 11 26 80 70
Mr Milos Nesladek
Main Scientist
Materials Physics
+32 11 26 88 33
Lieve De Doncker
UHasselt Communication
+32 11 26 88 13

KU Leuven University

KU Leuven is currently by far the largest university in Belgium in terms of research funding and expenditure (EUR 475 million in 2017), and is a charter member of LERU. In the Times Higher Education ranking KU Leuven is ranked as the 21st European university, while in the Reuters Top 100 of the World’s most innovative institutions, KU Leuven is listed as the first European university.

To strengthen international collaboration, KU Leuven has its own international research fellowship programme and supports international scholars in international funding applications. KU Leuven Research & Development (LRD) is the technology transfer office (TTO) of the KU Leuven. Since 1972 a multidisciplinary team of experts guides researchers in their interaction with industry and society, and the valorisation of their research results (124 spin offs, …).

Participation in E-TEST:
Jean-Pierre Locquet is a professor in the Department Physics and Astronomy while Jin Won (Maria) Seo is a professor in the Materials Engineering Department. They have a joint research group Functional NanoSystems and will focus on the development and characterization of the mirror coating. Michael Kraft and Filip Tavernier are professors in the Electrical Engineering Department in the MICAS section and will work on sensors and cryo-electronics respectively.

Mr Jean-Pierre Locquet
Main Scientist
+32 16 32 72 90
Mrs Maria Seo
+32 16 32 12 72
Mr Filip Tavernier
+32 16 37 37 56

Mr Michael Kraft
ESAT – Micas
 +32 16 37 37 56

Nikhef – National Institute for Subatomic Physics

Nikhef is the National Institute for Subatomic Physics in the Netherlands. Nikhef performs research into the elementary building blocks of matter and the universe, their mutual forces and the structure of space and time. The research takes place at particle accelerators such as the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Geneva and with detectors throughout the world for cosmic particles, dark matter and gravitational waves.

Nikhef‘s research lines are supported by high-quality theoretical research, pioneering detector R&D and the development of powerful computing and data processing techniques. Nikhef is not only an institute at Amsterdam Science Park, but is also a partnership between NWO-I and six universities: the Radboud University, the University of Groningen, the University of Amsterdam, Maastricht University, Utrecht University and VU Amsterdam.

Nikhef is an active member of the Virgo collaboration and is also involved in developing new technologies for the next generation of gravitational wave detectors. In the E-TEST- project, Nikhef will contribute to developing ultra-cold vibration control, optical engineering, the EMR cross-border underground observatory and geological modelling and engineering geology of the Einstein Telescope.

Mr Frank Linde
Main Scientist

Mr Alessandro Bertolini
Mr Rob van der Meer

Mr Conor Mow Lowry
Expert in gravirational wave detectors

Mrs Martine Oudenhoven
Communication Advisor Telescope Einstein Project NL-Vlaanderen
Nikhef Communication
+31 205 592 5075

Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

The University of Bonn is one of eleven German Universities of Excellence. It stands for world-class, top-notch science and research. For 200 years, the University has been shaped by outstanding scientific personalities, research-led degree courses, the international flair of being the German city of the United Nations, a dynamic, worldwide networked scientific region. With around 35,000 students, 6,000 doctoral students, almost 550 professorships and 6,000 employees, the University of Bonn is one of the largest traditional and research-intensive universities in Germany. The large spectrum of subjects on offer in seven faculties ranges from agricultural sciences to dentistry. Numerous subjects occupy a leading position in international competition. In addition to strong disciplines, six cross-faculty Transdisciplinary Research Areas (TRAs) provide space for exploration and innovation that addresses key scientific, technological and societal challenges.

Research in the Geophysics Section of the Institute of Geosciences focusses on the development and implementation of non-invasive geophysical methods to characterize and monitor structures and processes in the subsurface, as well as on the modelling of coupled subsurface physical processes. Main applications of models and methods are in the fields of hydrogeophysics, biogeophysics and cryogeophysics.

In the E-TEST project the University of Bonn contributes to the implementation of the underground observatory and the development of the (hydro)geological model for the potential ET site by integrating hydrogeophysical imaging and monitoring methods which exploit electrical signatures of the earth.

Mr Andreas Kemna
Professor in Geophysics
Institute of Geosciences, Geophysics Section
+49 228 73 3060
Mr Joost Hase
Institute of Geosciences, Geophysics Section
+49 228 73 60630
Mr Johannes Seiler
UniBonn Communication
+49 228 73 7451

NMWP Management GmbH

The NMWP Management GmbH is an acknowledged partner of economy, science and public authorities for innovation-promoting services in the field of high-tech as well as the key enabling technologies nanotechnology, microsystems technology, advanced materials, photonics and quantum technologies.

Within the project, the NMWP Management GmbH is involved in different tasks. The two main tasks are on the one hand the complete communication, which is implemented for the project in close cooperation with the lead partner, the University of Liège. In addition, based on its extensive network in the high-tech sector, the NMWP Management GmbH supports companies from the German Interreg NWE region to become actively involved in the project as a supplier of relevant components and services.

Mr Dirk Kalinowski
Project Manager
+49 211 385459-15
Mr Hendrik Köster
+49 211 385459-16

Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI)

The Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) is the Dutch national weather service. Primary tasks of KNMI are weather forecasting and monitoring of weather, climate, air quality and seismic activity. KNMI is also the national research and information centre for meteorology, climate, air quality, and seismology.

KNMI advises on and warns society to reduce risks in the field of weather, climate and seismology and to limit damage and injuries. With high-quality knowledge and technology plus an extensive observation network, KNMI offers products and services that contribute to the safety, accessibility, sustainability and prosperity of the Netherlands.

The department R&D Seismology and Acoustics (R&DSA) covers the field of mechanical waves in the solid earth, the atmosphere and the oceans, from the angles of seismology and acoustics. The department is responsible for the real-time determination of the epicenter, the strength and the depth of both tectonic and induced seismic events in the Netherlands, and the attribution of their causes. To this end data are acquired (monitoring using an extensive national seismic and acoustic network), interpreted (analysis and research) and distributed (data dissemination).

Within the E-TEST project, R&DSA will set up a seismic monitoring network in the region of interest. This network complements the already existing seismic instrumentation in the area. Acquired data will be used to image the subsurface and estimate the background noise levels at depth from surface and borehole measurements.

Mr Läslo Evers
Prof. Seismo-Acoustics / Overall responsible for KNMIs contribution to E-TEST project
R&D Seismology and Acoustics
+31 611 604 810
Mr Elmer Ruigrok
PhD Seismologist / Expert in imaging the subsurface with seismic methods
R&D Seismology and Acoustics
+31 628 731 242

Ms Anne-Marie Hoogendoorn
+31 655 457 554

Maastricht University

The Department of Gravitational Waves and Fundamental Physics (GWFP) at Maastricht University (UM) was established in 2019. Its members, however, have been active in the field of gravitational wave astronomy for a long time and hold several key positions within the LIGO and Virgo collaborations.

Maastricht University is the most international university in the Netherlands. UM has quickly built up a solid reputation as a result of its high-quality research and education, as well as a strong focus on social engagement. Today, UM is considered one of the best young universities in the world. It is located in the Limburg region of the Netherlands, which has been selected as a possible location for the future European gravitational-wave detector, the Einstein Telescope (ET).

The GWFP group aims at developing and testing key technologies for ET in the regional and European context. Its expertise lies especially within the optical interferometer design, the application of novel quantum technologies for increased sensitivities and the development of new highly-reflective mirror coatings. A prototype interferometer facility is currently being built at UM which will serve as a unique testing and integration platform for regional and international partners.

Within E-TEST, the group will contribute its expertise on interferometer design and requirements to the development of large, cryogenically cooled mirrors that are to be used as test-masses in ET. Specifically, GWFP has two PostDoc positions within E-TEST, who will work on the large-scale silicon test-masses with a focus on the dielectric mirror coating, as well as the noise requirements and characterisation for the to-be developed laser source at a wavelength of 2µm.

Mr Stefan Hild
Main Scientist, prof. Gravitational Research
UM, Gravitational waves and fundamental physics
+31 43 38 82 217

Mr Gideon Koekoek
Assistant Professor of Gravitational Wave Astronomy / astrophysical sources
Gravitational waves and fundamental physics
+31 652 67 66 06

Mr Thomas Cleij
Secretary of the ET Pathfinder council
Dean of the Faculty of Science and Engineering
+31 43 38 85 189

Mrs Jessica Steinlechner
Assistant Professor of Gravitational Wave Astronomy / optical simulation and design
Gravitational waves and fundamental physics
+31 43 38 82 217

Mr Sebastian Steinlechner
Assistant Professor of Gravitational Wave Astronomy / substrates and coatings
Gravitational waves and fundamental physics
+31 43 38 82 217
Mrs Mariëtte Wennekers
UM Communication
+31 648 76 55 44

Université catholique de Louvain

The Université catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain) builds on almost 600 years’ experience and is today a multi-site university in Belgium at the forefront of innovation and excellence in education and research.

UCLouvain physics research is carried out at the Research Institute in Mathematics and Physics and more particularly at the Cosmology, Particle Physics and Phenomenology (CP3) center, where theoretical and experimental research on fundamental interactions and cosmology, as well as research and development on associated instrumentation are conducted.

Besides being involved in particle physics experiments, notably the CMS and NA62 experiments at CERN, the CP3 center is active in gravitational wave physics and is involved in the VIRGO experiment at the European Gravitational Observatory EGO.
Presently the center counts 10 academic staff members, 7 research scientists and about 50 postdoctoral researchers and PhD students.

Within E-TEST, the group will contribute to the work package 1 that aims to the seismic isolation system of the large, cryogenically cooled
mirrors that are to be used as test-masses in the Einstein Telescope project. Specifically, the UCLouvain group has one postdoctoral position within E-TEST, who will work on cryogenic inertial sensor development and vibration isolation control design.

Mr Giacomo Bruno
Main UCLouvain promoter – Prototype -Development of the seismic isolation system in WP1
+32 10 47 32 15

Mr Krzysztof Piotrzkowski
Researcher – Prototype -Development of the seismic isolation system in WP1
+32 10 47 32 44

Mr Joris van Heijningen
Researcher – Prototype -Development of the seismic isolation system in WP1
+32 10 47 31 52

The Financiers