About CMWS

The Centre for Molecular Water Science (CMWS) is a pan-European consortium of international key partners from different fields of science (Physics, Chemistry, Biology) with the common goal of achieving a detailed molecular understanding of water.

The Centre for Molecular Water Science (CMWS) brings together key experts from different areas of water-related sciences with the common goal of achieving a detailed molecular understanding of water. This includes the dynamic processes in bulk water and at water interfaces, which are highly relevant for chemistry, biology, earth science, and the environment as well as for technology. The scope of the CMWS will range from studies of the fundamental properties of water to its role in real-time chemical dynamics, biochemical and biological reactions. It will equally cover questions in geo-and astroscience, environmental and climate research and address the need for water-based energy technologies. The research program will build on the suite of enabling technologies (ultrafast coherent imaging and scattering, spectroscopy techniques, novel sample environments and sample manipulation technologies) available in the CMWS and within the unique Hamburg light sources environment (i.e. PETRA III, FLASH and European XFEL) complemented by substantial expertise in simulation and theory. The centre will be supported through strong collaborations with infrastructure hubs providing scientific expertise and access to complementary techniques and infrastructures (NMR and optical spectroscopy techniques, data handling facilities). In 2018, two CMWS workshops took place at DESY to define a first draft of the research programme. The DESY WATER WEEK 2020 followed these workshops with over 200 participants. In March 2021 the CMWS DAYS took place as an all-online event with more than 275 participants. As a result of these meetings, the research agenda of the CMWS has been published as the Centre of Molecular Water Science - White Paper in June 2021. The plan of an interdisciplinary centre focusing on the molecular properties of water has found wide-spread interest in the international science community: DESY received more than 45 Letters of Intent of potential partners. The early science programme in the form of a virtual laboratory started in 2019 with focus on PhD projects funded jointly by DESY and CMWS partners. A second round of the early science programme has started in 2020.

The CMWS consortium has developed a science progamme centered around five strategic research pillars:

• Fundamental Properties of Water
• Water in Climate-, Astro-, and Geo-Sciences
• Water in Energy Research and Technology
• Real-Time Chemical Dynamics
• Water in the Molecular Life Sciences