The CRITEX equipex project ” Challenging equipments for the temporal and spatial exploration of the Critical Zone at the catchment scale.”, is an instrumental research project funded by the French National Research Agency within the framework of the French governmental program of excellence PIA. It was funded in 2012 for a 10-year period for 9 million euros.

The ambition of CRITEX is to provide the French community studying the Critical Zone with an innovative and shared instrument facility. CRITEX’s innovation lies both in the development of new instruments (prototypes) and in the use of commerfcial instruments used in synergy on chosen sites. The two scientific objectives of CRITEX are, on the one hand, to study the variability of the critical zone at high temporal frequency over long periods of time in order to establish matter and energy budgets, and, on the other hand, to focus on preferential moments (hot moments) and preferentail loci of reactivity (hot moment) in the Critical Zone of the OZCAR-IR observatories (lien OZCAR).

CRITEX gathers 21 laboratories belonging to four national research organisations and more than twenty Universities. Instrumentation in CRITEX is a way to fister scientific communities to work together on places around scientific questions. CRITEX has given the French community an international visibility. Initially co-written and submitted by the OZCAR river basin network (RBV) and the H+ hydrogeological network, CRITEX has laid the foundations for the creation of the OZCAR infrastructure.

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