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Department of Physics

The Cavendish Laboratory
Dr Gemma Bale (left) and Prof. Sarah Bohndiek (right)

Prof Sarah Bohndiek and Dr Gemma Bale have been selected as two of eight founding Programme Directors of the Advanced Research and Invention Agency (ARIA), a new governmental research and development funding agency built to unlock scientific and technological breakthroughs for everyone's benefit.

As co-directors, Prof Bohndiek and Dr Bale will be responsible for designing and overseeing ARIA’s initial programme focusing on using optics for planetary and human health.

They will be looking to accelerate the use and applications of optical technologies, initially by exploring ideas around non-invasive optical mapping and sensing across a range of applications - from monitoring human health to climate change.

Over the next three years, Prof Bohndiek and Dr Bale will develop a concrete programme around their visions and build the multidisciplinary communities to make them a reality. ARIA will be seeking input and inspiration from the community as they drive towards launching formal programmes in the coming months.

Prof Sarah Bohndiek, Professor of Biomedical Physics at the Cavendish Laboratory and Group Leader at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, said “Gemma and I are both passionate about the future health of our planet and the people on it. This is an incredible opportunity for the two of us to shape the UK funding landscape through this new agency.”

Dr Gemma Bale, Gianna Angelopoulos Assistant Professor of Medical Therapeutics at the Cavendish Laboratory and the Department of Engineering, said “Working in the health tech space, we have created new tools to allow us to safely see inside humans in new ways using light. We believe that there are emerging optical technologies at the edge of the possible, which will disrupt the current landscape.”

As both contribute to shaping the strategic vision of ARIA, their respective research groups will continue their crucial work at the Cavendish Laboratory, Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute and the Department of Engineering. 

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Banner immage: Dr Gemma Bale (left) and Prof. Sarah Bohndiek (right)

Adapted rom a Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute news story