11-13 November 2019
Africa/Johannesburg timezone
SA-ESRF Light Source Conference

Conclusion and Actions

11 Nov 2019, 15:25


Prof. Simon Connell (University of Johannesburg)


The Floor and Panel come to Resolutions and Conclusions. Conclusions This SA-ESRF meeting builds on more than a decade long deep commitment to develop the User Base in Africa reflecting the Global nature of Science and the ESRF as a leading international facility. ESRF-EBS represents a very dramatic increase in figure of merit (FOM) of performance of both source and detector (100x100) or about 10000 time more powerful. In addition completely novel with also novel techniques and opportunities emerge. The novelty means there is not really experience yet and so the exploitation of the new capacity requires partnerships with beamline scientists. This meeting extends the possibility for all to grow their contacts within the ESRF or launch new ones. This should lead to the development of proposals ready for March 2020 The meeting noted the increased number of projects and organisations involved and shares the vision of working together in a common coherent vision, not only for South Africa, but also for Africa (training, impactful science, science for development....) For example, there were also talks from the AFCA (IUCr AND PCCR), the START program, ANSDAC, ASNEAM, LAAAMP and also the neutron related complimentary techniques at Necsa. All programmes and projects were stakeholders and could work together coherently avoiding silos, and build the common vision of growing the User Base in South Africa, with training, mobility and shared local infrastructure. The ESRF were committed to the concept of coherence and inclusivity of stakeholders. The coherence of the South African Community had suffered because of the failure of the NRF to provide regular support for the Science@Synchrotrons biennial conference since 2011 and also to not respond to the SAILS Proposal which would replace the SRRIC. The DSI and NRF meanwhile supported other similar programmes, such as the SA-CERN programme. The SAILS (or SA Light Source user community) would grow even more than this programme, as it was more interdisciplinary, with more members, with at least the same or better opportunities for training, technology transfer and innovation. Meanwhile we are only a volunteer management and are under-resourced to grow coherently, develop joint proposals, provide training and audit and comment our performance. The meeting agreed to revive SAILS with or without the support of the DST and NRF. We could go elsewhere to seek funding, but we recognise it made more sense for the NRF and DSI to understand their role to support this group.

Primary author

Prof. Simon Connell (University of Johannesburg)

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