On Tuesday, 22nd October 2013 The Cyprus Institute during an official ceremony launched the STAR-LAB project.
STAR-LAB is a Strategic Infrastructure project of the Science and Technology in Archaeology Research Center (STARC) of The Cyprus Institute. The project aims at the creation of an advanced mobile laboratory with instrumentation suitable for archaeological fieldwork and the related analysis of materials remains, monuments and artefacts.
It is a unique to the country and the region research infrastructure, which will greatly contribute to the scientific research, documentation and preservation of the Cultural Heritage of Cyprus.
STAR-LAB consists of a four-wheel drive truck with a customized cabin, adapted to accommodate researchers performing autonomous research in the field, whether an archaeological site or a museum. The truck is equipped with state-of-the-art instruments and software to support activity in 3D data capture and analysis, geophysics and remote sensing, advanced imaging technologies (hyper-spectral imaging, reflectance transformation imaging, digital microscopy), and chemical-physical analyses. It is a self-sufficient unit, which offers autonomy to perform on-site analyses and provide results in real-time, thus overcoming the logistical difficulties that frequently arise in archaeological and cultural heritage research. The Project (ΝΕΑ ΥΠΟΔΟΜΗ/ΣΤΡΑΤΗ/ 0308/30) is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund and the Republic of Cyprus through the Research Promotion Foundation.
The key partners of the project are the University of Cyprus - Archaeological Research Unit (UCY-ARU), the Center for Research and Restoration of Museums of France (C2RMF), the Foundation for Research and Technology, Hellas - Institute for Mediterranean Studies (FORTH-IMS) and the Institute of Molecular Science and Technology of the Italian National Research Council (CNR-ISTM).
The ceremony was addressed by the Honorable Minister of Finance Mr. Harris Georgiades and attended by government officials and distinguished personalities from the Cypriot community.
The minister stated that Cyprus’ economy is going throw a challenging transformation. One of the main goals of rebuilding the Cypriot economy is the promotion of research and innovation. He stressed that the development of such important research infrastructures, such as STAR-LAB, especially during these challenging economic times is very encouraging news. Mr. Georgiades congratulated the Institute on the innovative research program and reaffirmed the government's confidence to The Cyprus Institute and the Cypriot academic community in general.