National Icon nomination for powerful mobile X-ray source

News - 18 June 2019 - Webredactie 3ME

Smart*Light, a compact ‘table-top synchrotron’ that generates extremely clear X-rays for medical, material and art research, was nominated as a finalist for the selection of new National Icons. This nomination means that Smart*Light and nine other nominees will compete to see who will be allowed to hold the title of National Icon. In this competition, the government searches for pioneering innovations that will enable the Netherlands to change the world in the future.

Joris Dik, professor Art and Archeology at MSE


In the Smart*Light research project, researchers from TU Delft and the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) are building, on the initiative of professors Jom Luiten (TUe) and Joris Dik (TUD) the construction of a pilot configuration within a consortium consisting of other universities and companies. The high-intensity X-ray beam that this device will produce is now only available via large, expensive and scarce facilities. Ultimately, Smart*Light will be used in clinical applications for medical diagnostics, in research laboratories for the development of new materials and in museums to examine important artworks.

Read more in Building ‘scaled-down synchrotron' begun

National Icons

The development of the artificial kidney. The invention of Bluetooth. The construction of the Delta Works. Each and every one of these is a pioneering innovation that the Netherlands can be proud of. National Icons have the potential to achieve this level. They provide Dutch solutions for global issues in the areas of health, energy, digitisation, circular materials and mobility. Overall, 55 quality projects were submitted. An independent jury led by Hans Wijers has selected 10 innovations and will advise the government on the appointment of the National Icons. The 10 entrepreneurs and researchers in question have been invited to explain their innovations in detail to the jury in the coming weeks. The government will announce the winners in September.

Read more about the 10 nominees

Jom Luiten, Professor and leader of the Coherence and Quantum Technology group at TU/e