Both networking and awareness are also critical points in developing industry relationships for the conception and creation of state-of-the-art synchrotron instrumentation – which can have spillovers into more day-to-day technological applications such as health and mobile communications. Within this, light sources are important instigators, developers and users of high level instrumentation. This is especially the case for high performance detector systems. Linking to the HIZPAD2 joint research activity of CALISPO, ELSII also allowed for a networking activity in the form of a workshop to bring together industrial detector suppliers with light source detector scientists. The meeting objectives were to:
- stimulate discussion around future spectroscopy detector systems and exchange ideas on how to solve challenging new spectroscopy applications at synchrotrons
- prepare the ground for partnerships to develop spectroscopy detector systems beyond the present state of the art, considering this in the context of the Horizon 2020 timescale and funding framework.
The number of participants in the meeting was limited (40 final attendees), and only by invitation. The participants included scientific staff representing seven of the major European synchrotron facilities plus representatives from European (11) and American (1) companies producing spectroscopy detectors or their related readout electronics. The presentations made at the meeting are available on the ESRF web site. The key outcome of the meeting was to set up working groups to put in place technology roadmaps for High-Rate Spectroscopy Systems, High Energy Spectroscopy Systems, and Imaging Spectroscopy Systems. These teams are aiming to provide short and clear feedback which could act as a basis for potential detector projects.
A major theme of ELSII networking was simply between the light, neutron and muon facility business and industry offices. The staff running these offices had often never met each other – and certainly very rarely cross-light-neutron facilities, and the ELSII IAB meetings provided the opportunity for exchange, meeting and sharing the challenges of how best to work with and for industrial clients and partners. Throughout the ELSII project lifetime there was a clear willingness to share ideas and methods, with cultural/regional variation, industry variation and facility motivation to work with industrial R&I needs. This networking has led to a number of new initiatives and projects inspired by sharing approaches and ideas. Some of these are incorporated as concrete sub-tasks or work packages in European project proposals – some, with regret, failed to secure funding whilst others are awaiting evaluation. Others are seen in a more closely-knit business community at the facilities, with a fertile ground to work together in serving industry.