October 2014: John Collier, Director of the Central Laser Facility (CLF) has announced the closure of the EPSRC Laser Loan Pool. The closure of the loan pool facility is a decision reached solely by EPSRC who believe that it does not meet the criteria of a national mid-range facility. Researchers in the community, who require a specific piece of equipment to underpin their research efforts, are advised to explore the EPSRC strategic equipment process (www.epsrc.ac.uk/research/facilities/equipment/process/apply/) and speak to EPSRC in the first instance.
The Central Laser Facility established the Laser Loan Pool more than 25 years ago in response to demand from the research community, and has managed and operated the facility since the beginning. In doing so the CLF has helped support many excellent programmes of research and assisted numerous young researchers as they embarked on their scientific careers. Mr Collier thanked all those who used and supported the loan pool facility over the years.
EPSRC funding will cease on 28 February 2015 and no further applications for loans will be accepted. CLF will continue to fully support all current loans and those awarded at the recent Facility Access Panel meeting held on 09 September 2014. After all loans have been completed, the lasers will be transferred to the community through an open call, with applications assessed by peer review. Details of the procedure are being worked out and the call will be issued in due course.