£300m funding boost for science


Single space illustration of planet with moon.

The Government has announced a £300 million boost for science, with funding for a number of ambitious projects including a European space mission.

Science minister David Willetts said one of the aims was to create new jobs through scientists and businesses working together on "exciting" programmes.

The biggest investment - £165 million - will be on a project to create a powerful neutron microscope, 30 times more powerful than current microscopes.

Around £100 million will be spent on creating the largest and most sensitive radio telescope in the world, while £25 million was announced for the European M3 Space Mission, involving a giant telescope.

Mr Willetts said: "Investment in science is a crucial part of this Government's long-term economic plan.
It's about investing in our future, helping grow new industries and create more jobs - and that will mean more financial security for people across the country."

Paul Nurse, president of the Royal Society, said: "International collaboration is central to scientific progress and is essential if we are to deliver projects on the scale of the Square Kilometre Array, the European Spallation Source and the M3 Space Mission.

"Many scientific projects can only be pursued through such large scale collaboration and it is great that the Government has decided that the UK will play its full part. Investment in these projects is also an investment in British innovation and in the creation of sustainable economic growth built on our world leading science."

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