It must be possible for small and medium-sized enterprises in the photonics sector to access research – this is the idea behind the establishment of Stiftung Analytische Röntgenphysik, the endowed professorship of analytical x-ray physics.
And instead of one large firm, a group of small and medium-sized firms support the endowed professorship. They came together in 2009 to locate the excellent research being done by Birgit Kanngießer at Technische Universität Berlin and requested Technologiestiftung Berlin to create the framework for her engagement. As a result, a temporary foundation in which donors are involved for a limited period of time with a fixed amount of funding was set up under Technologiestiftung Berlin’s umbrella.
It was initially planned for a period of seven years, but in 2016 another 13 small and medium-sized enterprises joined together to extend the successful initiative by another seven years.
The donating firms also engage in other activities to support research and young scientists. They regularly provide rooms and devices to students, enabling them to gain insight into practice but do not insist upon exclusive rights to the results.