The term Unique Scientific and Technical Infrastructure (ICTS) refers to facilities, resources or services that are necessary for the development of cutting-edge research of the highest quality, as well as for the transmission, exchange and preservation of knowledge, the transfer of technology and the promotion of innovation. They are unique or exceptional in their nature, with a very high investment, maintenance and operating cost, and whose importance and strategic nature justifies their availability for the entire R&D&I collective.
ICTSs have three key characteristics: they are publicly owned, unique and open to competitive access.
ICTSs are located all over Spain and are listed in the Map of Unique Scientific and Technical Infrastructure. An ICTS may be in a single location (Single Location Infrastructures), form part of an Infrastructure Network (IR), or act as a Distributed Infrastructure (DI), depending on the level of integration and coordination of its capacities. The ICTS Map is dynamic and open, meaning that the infrastructures listed on the current map must continue to meet the requirements to maintain their ICTS status, and it is open to the incorporation of other infrastructures that are operational and demonstrate compliance with the requirements.