The United Kingdom officially joins European XFEL

Today, the UK joined European XFEL as the research organization’s twelfth member state. In a ceremony at the British Embassy in Berlin, representatives of the UK government and the other contract parties including the German federal government signed the documents to join the European XFEL Convention. The UK’s contribution will amount to 26 million Euro, or about 2% of the total construction budget of 1.22 billion Euro (both in 2005 prices) and an annual contribution of about 2 % to the operation budget. The UK will be represented in European XFEL by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) as shareholder.

see the European XFEL press announcement:
https://www.xfel.eu/news_and_events/news/index_eng.html?openDirectAnchor=1435&two_columns=0

see also the BBC News announcement “XFEL: UK signs up to super X-ray laser machine”:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-43460795

Workshop on Physical Science with FELs – Synergies with Diamond and RAL 8-9 Jan. 2018, Diamond Light Source

A joint Diamond-STFC workshop will be held at Diamond on Mon. 8th and Tue. 9th January 2018 (noon to noon) to discuss how Diamond and RAL can support or facilitate FEL research in the physical sciences. The meeting will provide a platform for discussing the formation of a Physical Science FEL centre/hub, and how FEL-Diamond/RAL synergies can be exploited to support UK FEL scientists.

See here for more details.

2017 Accelerator Strategic Review

STFC is currently undertaking a strategic review of its Accelerator Programme.

Accelerator science is integral to STFC’s mission, and serves to underpin the organisation’s functions. A strategic approach is required to ensure that the UK maintains its international position in accelerator science, and to position it to take timely decisions and influence investment both in the UK and internationally. The 2017 Accelerator Strategic Review aims to provide an understanding of where future investment and resource should be targeted, taking into account the enabling technologies and synergies.

One of the themes of the review is Light Sources, which includes FELs.

Details of the review and how to input into the development of the roadmaps (deadline of 2 August 2017) or can be found here.

China Develops World's Brightest VUV Free Electron Laser Research Facility

A team of Chinese scientists announced on Jan. 15 that they have developed a new bright VUV FEL light source, the Dalian Coherent Light Source (DCLS), which can deliver world’s brightest FEL light in an energy range from 8 to 24 eV, making it unique of the same kind that only operates in the VUV region.

http://english.cas.cn/head/201701/t20170112_173367.shtml

First Call for Proposals for Early User Experiments at the Femtosecond X-Ray Experiment (FXE) and Single Particles, Clusters, and Biomolecules & Serial Femtosecond Crystallography (SPB/SFX) Instruments at the European XFEL

The European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser Facility (European XFEL) is expecting to see first X-ray FEL light in the first half of 2017 and plans to start the Early User Experiment programme shortly thereafter.

For more information about the call and Early User experiment conditions, please refer to:

http://www.xfel.eu/call_for_proposals

DEADLINE: Monday, 20 March 2017 inclusive (UTC+01:00)