National University of Ireland

Contact Persons

Contact Persons: 
Martin Leahy


The National University of Ireland Galway (NUI) is a non-profit Institution for higher education and scholarship, with over 17,000 students and more than 2,400 staff. NUI Galway has a distinguished reputation for teaching and research excellence in the fields of arts, social science and Celtic studies; business, public policy and law; engineering and informatics; medicine, nursing and health sciences; and science.

The Photonics Cluster is part of the School of Physics and includes the National Centre for Laser Applications, the Biophotonics Group, the Applied Optics Group, and the Tissue Optics and Microcirculation Imaging Group. We currently number approximately 50 researchers.

The main aim of these programmes is to increase awareness and interest in science and enhance the communication skills of the researchers working in the group. The education outreach team works closely with the relevant teachers to design and develop learning initiatives to match the needs of the target group of students. Usually, the learning programmes are delivered in the participating schools, during normal class time, by the team of Photonics specialists.


NUIG School of Physics actively promotes Outreach activities through the Galway Science and Technology Forum, Tyndall open days, Nanoweek, Sea2Sky, industry days, Outreach module 5 ECTS credit module to train postgraduate students in outreach activities, Youth Academy, summer schools and school visits.

Our research programme covers a wide variety of topics in applied optics and imaging science, including smart optics, adaptive optics, optical scattering and propagation, and engineering optics.

We recognise the need for innovation in science education and are committed to working extensively with schools. The group has developed significant outreach programmes both in primary and post-primary schools. These programmes are coordinated and run by the group’s Outreach Programme co-ordinator in conjunction with members of the research team.