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Department of Physics

Centre for Advanced Instrumentation

Researchers within the CfAI support these activities through the development of novel and innovative instrumentation for ground and space-based telescopes (including the new European Extremely Large Telescope, in Chile) using facilities both in Durham and at the NETpark science and technology park, near Sedgefield, County Durham.

As well as providing a new home for the ICC, CEA and CfAI, the new building has also freed up space for Durham’s Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology (IPPP), a leading research centre into particle physics. The IPPP is part of the Ogden Centre for Fundamental Physics and will remain in the building next door to the new development that it once shared with the ICC.

The research carried out at the Ogden Centre (including the IPPP) forms the basis of a vigorous regional and national outreach programme undertaken by the Centre’s researchers to support public engagement in science in schools and the wider community.

The development was made possible thanks to generous donations of £3.35m from The Ogden Trust, whose Chairman is Durham physics alumnus and entrepreneur Sir Peter Ogden, £1.5m from The Wolfson Foundation and a further £900,000 from a private benefactor. Additional funding was provided by Durham University.

"The Ogden Centre provides an ideal venue for interactions between the three pillars of modern astronomy: theory, observation and instrument development, which are essential to underpin new fundamental discoveries and advances”.

Professor Ray Sharples, Director, Centre for Advanced Instrumentation