Queen Máxima shows great interest during photonics visit at EHCI (in pictures)

February 16, 2023

Queen Máxima visited the Eindhoven Hendrik Casimir Institute (EHCI) on Thursday, the center of our photonics research. Students and scientists could count on warm interest and well-informed questions from the queen.

[Translate to English:] Foto: Bart van Overbeeke

The railings in the central hall of building Flux were full of curious people this afternoon who wanted to catch a glimpse of today's exceptional visit: Queen Máxima. She came to be informed about photonics and Eindhoven's exceptional position in this area. The Queen visited labs and spoke with students and scientists, all of whom could count on warm interest and well-informed questions.

(The photos were taken by Bart van Overbeeke. The text continues below the photos)

The visit began with a welcome by Executive Board president Robert-Jan Smits and Wieteke de Boer, managing director of the Eindhoven Hendrik Casimir Institute, and a presentation by Kaylee Hakkel of spin-off MantiSpectra. Afterwards, the queen visited Chigo Okonkwo's lab in Flux, where he and postdoctoral researcher Sjoerd van der Heide explained their research in the field of broadband optical data communication.  

Clean room

Patty Stabile's lab was the next part of the program, where she and Simone Cardarelli of spin-off MicroAlign told their story to a very interested queen. Afterwards, accompanied by professor Erik Bakkers, she entered the cleanroom of the Spectrum building. There, dressed in the typical dust-free cleanroom clothing, she was able to watch the manufacturing process of photonic components.  

The final part of the visit was a discussion session with deans Bart Smolders and Kees Storm, Naomi Verstraeten of Brainport, scientific director Martijn Heck of the EHCI, Wieteke de Boer, Photondelta director Ewit Roos, Kaylee Hakkel, recent graduate Bram Smolenaars, program manager photonics Marija Trajkovic (of the EHCI), with Robert-Jan Smits leading the discussion.

Interesting day

The queen and the other participants discussed the strong position in the field of photonics and what is needed to maintain and expand that position. The Queen closed the meeting with an extended thanks "for a very informative and interesting day".

Robert-Jan Smits appreciated Máxima's visit. "We are thankful for her great interest in our researchers, students and startups. Her visit illustrates once again the world leading position of TU/e in photonics."

About the Eindhoven Hendrik Casimir Institute

We live in the era of information. Data is everywhere and everything is data. We want to be connected and we want things to work faster and for our information to be safe. The future of our information society is driven by exponential technologies in computing, communication and sensing. This trend will continue and will increasingly impact our lives and society for the better. At the same time, we are dealing with a global energy crisis. Without doing anything these fast-growing technologies will demand enormous amounts of energy. Therefore, the EHCI aims for sustainable solutions by exponentially decreasing the energy consumption of computing and communication, to enable the exponential growth of these technologies.

The EHCI addresses this challenge by excelling in and through the unique synergy of two eminent research fields: the precision and speed of photonics and mind-blowing magic of quantum technology. By bringing together these technologies and working from an engineering science perspective the EHCI is uniquely able to transfer research into real-world sustainable applications. With a focus on societal needs the EHCI will drive the roadmap for these exponential technologies in computing, communication and sensing, as TU/e has already proved in integrated photonics.

For more information check out our website.

Media contact

Frans Raaijmakers
(Science Information Officer)

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