Innovation for industry at European Research Infrastructures and ERICs cases: European Spallation Source ERIC Accelerator and Detector Technologies – Progress, Challenges, and Opportunities
Apr 7 @ 2:00 pm – Apr 28 @ 3:00 pm

In the frame of the H2020 project ACCELERATE, a series of webinars highlighting examples and cases of innovation for industry at European Research infrastructures in general, and ERICs in particular will be held in April 2021. Each talk will be facilitated by an expert in the field from the European Spallation Source.

  • Overview

Access to large scale Research infrastructures: CERIC –ERIC and Accelerate Project

CERIC- Central European Research Infrastructure Consortium´s CERIC’s main aim is to contribute to the creation of excellent science, both as in-house activity and as a service to international users. This is achieved mainly by providing access to its research facilities, addressing researchers requiring the use of one or more complementary techniques for structural investigation, analysis, synthesis and imaging of materials and biomaterials down to the nano-scale. The ACCELERATE project brought together CERIC´s research infrastructure and other large research facility with the aim of supporting the long-term sustainability of large scale research infrastructures (RIs).

The ESS Linear Accelerator – A Case Study

The proton linear accelerator of the European Spallation Source will be the world’s most powerful in term of MW of beam power on the target. This is achieved with a high-intensity normal-conducting low-energy part, followed by more than 300 m of state-of-the-art superconducting accelerating structure of three different kinds. Additional large systems generate the electromagnetic fields that accelerate the protons, provide helium at 2 K to cool the superconducting structures, etc.

The accelerator project is a collaboration between more than 20 universities and laboratories in most of the 13 ESS member states. More than half of the approximately 500 M€ budget for the accelerator is contributed from these partners, and industry in the member states is heavily involved.

This presentation will give an overview of the accelerator and its most important sub-systems, and it will describe some of the associated technical challenges. The construction is well under way, and many components have been delivered from our partners. Installation, testing and commissioning is in progress, and impressions from these activities will be given.

The speaker of the 1st webinar is Dr. Håkan Danared, Deputy head of Accelerator Division at the European Spallation Source. Read here the speaker’s biography.

Register to the 1st webinar here.

  • Overview

CERIC large research infrastructure solutions. Neutrons applied to industry

CERIC, Central European Research Infrastructure Consortium offers tailored services to boost industrial research and development activities related to the characterization and modification of materials in the fields of energy, health, food, cultural heritage and more. With excellent facilities in 9 countries in Central and Eastern Europe (Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, andSlovenia), CERIC supports proprietary research through a problem-solving approach, using some of the best scientific facilities and expertise in Central and Eastern Europe. Confidentiality is ensured through specific agreements guaranteeing the customer ownership of results. Highlights on neutron applications for industry will be showed

A new generation of neutron detectors and opportunities for industry-ESS

A decade ago, the collapse in the available supply of Helium-3 gas combined with a similar surge in demand for this valuable gas led to the “Helium-3 crisis”. As more than 80% of neutron detectors worldwide were based around this gas, it was a challenge to be able to build neutron detectors for future neutron scattering instruments.

ESS has undertaken a decade long R&D programme, which has reached fruition, and the new generation of neutron detectors are being built for ESS instruments. The need for Helium-3 at has thus been reduced by over 90% as a result of this programme; in addition, these new detectors are higher performant more matching the needs of a new facility.

An overview of how the research and development process was carried out is presented, in particular to give insight in the interactions between a research institute developing a niche and highly specialised product and industry. Along the way the various forms and examples of engagement with industry are noted. Synergies and interactions during this process are outlined.

This webinar is particular timely with the construction of the detectors for ESS just starting leading to potential opportunities in the coming year.

The speaker of this 2nd edition is Dr. Richard Hall-Wilton, Group Leader Detector Technologies at the European Spallation Source. Read here the speaker’s biography.

Register to the 2nd webinar here.

  • Overview

Introduction of the ACCELERATE project.

ACCELERATE project, supports the long-term sustainability of large scale research infrastructures (RIs) through the development of policies and legal and administrative tools and frameworks to improve the offer of tailored services to private and public entities, ensuring outreach to new scientific and industrial communities worldwide and defining common protocols for monitoring and assessing RIs’ socio-economic impact.

ESS and Neutrons

The European Spallation Source (ESS), currently under construction in Lund, Sweden, is the world’s most powerful neutron spallation source, with an average power of 5 MW at 2.0 GeV. The linac accelerates a proton beam of 62.5 mA peak current at 4 % duty cycle (2.86 ms at 14 Hz). The high beam power at ESS will give excellent possibilities for measurements of possible CP violation in the leptonic sector. In the ESS neutrino Super Beam Project (ESSnuSB) it is proposed to utilize this powerful accelerator as a proton driver for a neutrino beam that will be sent to a large underground Cherenkov detector in Garpenberg, mid-Sweden. Current pion focusing schemes at the neutrino target require the pulses to be of the order of microseconds. These short pulses can be achieved by injecting the H⁻ beam into an accumulator ring by charge exchange injection before they are sent to the neutrino target. By adding a second H⁻ beam, interleaved with the proton beam, the duty cycle will be increased to 8 % and the average power to 10 MW. In this talk we discuss the required modifications of the ESS linac to reach an additional 5 MW beam power for neutrino production in parallel to the spallation neutron production.

The speaker of this 3rd edition is Dr. Mohammad Eshraqi, Accelerator Physicist at the European Spallation Source. Read here the speaker’s biography.

Register to the 3rd webinar here.

  • Overview

Introduction of the ACCELERATE project.

ACCELERATE project, supports the long-term sustainability of large scale research infrastructures (RIs) through the development of policies and legal and administrative tools and frameworks to improve the offer of tailored services to private and public entities, ensuring outreach to new scientific and industrial communities worldwide and defining common protocols for monitoring and assessing RIs’ socio-economic impact.

Neutron converters for detectors

Boron carbide (B4C) has been seen as one of practical substitution for helium as the neutron conversion material in neutron detectors, but applying a material in solid state, instead of gas form, also means new challenges for the production. ESS Linköping Detector Coatings Workshop has been working on the process development for reliable productions of B4C thin films in different types of neutron detectors. The thin films deposited are also examined with different analytical tools to check up the qualities, which are crucial for the iteration of further process tuning.

Here, a brief summary is given on why a new neutron converter technique was needed and how we upscaled from first proof of concept to demos and to first sharp coatings. We will also present the project works done to assure the quality of the depositions, to procure highly specialized materials, and to stay in close contact with industry. An overview of how opportunities arise for industries during this development and production process is noted.

In addition to the project operation, we will show examples of the deposition processes that has been developed in the workshop, and the resulting products of B4C films from the processes. Apart from B4C, we will report the capability of depositing other materials that can also be interesting for the design of detectors, for example, metal contact layers.

The speakers of this 4th edition are Dr. Linda Robinson, Section Leader Neutronic Detectors Coating and Dr. Lai Chung-Chuan, Coatings Scientist. Read here the speakers biographies.

Register to the 4th webinar here.

Save the date ► ACCELERATE Webinar #13: ”Spinning Out – The early days define the journey”
Apr 20 @ 11:30 am – 12:30 pm

The 13th edition of the ACCELERATE webinars will take place on 20th April 2021 at 11:30 am (CET time). The speaker of this edition is Mr. Luca Venza, Director of Technology Innovation, Transfer and Acceleration at the IESE Business School.


The event will bring together scientists, researchers, MDs, PhDs and others to expand their knowledge about how to build a spinout. Among other topics, the speaker will share real life examples of successes and failures of deep science technology experts who have experience with negotiation of shareholders agreements, licensing agreements, company by-laws and services agreements.

Moreover, the speaker will highlight the challenges of raising an early stage seed round and how to approach business angels and Venture Capitalists. Best practices and an overview of how strong founding team looks like in the early stages will also be presented.

About the speaker:

Mr. Luca Venza is a specialist in defining market-fit for advanced technologies across a broad industrial spectrum. For the past 7 years he has worked extensively with science backed startups and spinoffs to bring together top scientist-founders in their field, with top MBA talent worldwide. He has helped startups raise debt, equity and convertible financing from business angels, private investors and VCs. He helps recruit mixed experience management teams for new business ventures. In 2016, he founded the Barcelona Technology Transfer Group (BTTG), through which he has accelerated 31 companies across a spectrum of technologies, including data simulation, virtual reality, 3D printing, sensors, data transmission, drones and blockchain.  In parallel, he works extensively with new healthcare technologies throughout the EIT Health network in innovation and business creation projects. He serves as a specialist mentor for the World Economic Forum, Invest Horizon and EIT Food.

► Register here.

Research Infrastructures (RIs) – Energy Industry Meeting: Improving Industry Usage of RIs @ Onlie
Apr 29 @ 9:30 am – 12:30 pm

CERIC is organising a meeting focusing on the relationship between Energy companies (batteries, energy storage, fuel cells) and Research Infrastructures (RIs). It will be held online on 29 April at 09:30 CET on the following topics

  • Access to Research Infrastructures, modes of access, how companies currently access to Research Infrastructures;
  • Example of collaborations;
  • Lessons learned: advantages, opportunities, weaknesses;
  • Opportunities to improve access for industry.

Short interventions by companies and research infrastructure representatives will take place, where it will be discussed the type of existing relationships and opportunities to improve access for companies to research infrastructures.

In addition to the presentations by Research Infrastructure (CERIC Executive Director, Head of Industrial Liaison Office at Elettra Sincrotrone S.C.p.A , Director of Centre for Knowledge and Technology Transfer at Charles University), and companies (ASG Superconductors S.p.A, Umicore, SOLIDpower, LEANCAT, Industrie De Nora), the event will also host an open discussion on how to improve the cooperation with industry.

► The event’s program is available here. Register here (Limited places available).

Register now ► Planning for Sustainability of Research Infrastructures
May 25 @ 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm

In the frame of the Horizon2020 projects ACCELERATE and the ERIC Forum Implementation Project, the event ”Planning for Sustainability of Research Infrastructures” will be held online on 25 May 2021.

It will bring to the fore the policy views, examples from operational Research Infrastructures (RIs) as well as planning instruments proposed by European projects, to demonstrate various expectations, requirements and approaches in planning for the medium to long-term sustainability of the RIs.

The concluding policy panel will stress the positions of the RIs in the wider European policy framework, with strong relevance to sustainability planning of the RIs. The topics discussed will address the renewed European Research Area (ERA), Horizon Europe and the new Cohesion policy, ERIC instrument and European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), among others.

►  The event’s program is available here.

► Register here

Programme Committee:
Salma Baghdadi, CERIC-ERIC
Ornela De Giacomo, CERIC-ERIC
Jana Kolar, CERIC-ERIC
Ute Gunseheimer, European Spallation Source ERIC
Lenka Unge, European Spallation Source ERIC
Ilaria Nardello, ERAMARIS

Organising Committee: 
Salma Baghdadi, CERIC-ERIC
Ornela De Giacomo, CERIC-ERIC
Jana Kolar, CERIC-ERIC
Ilaria Nardello, ERAMARIS

HERCULES Specialized Course 2021: The multi-technique approach of CERIC-ERIC as a tool for Nanoscience
May 31 – Jun 9 all-day


The HERCULES Specialized Course (HSC) is an extensive training that is being organized since 2006, taking place after the main HERCULES School, and combining both theoretical and practical sessions.

This year’s edition will be organized from 31st May to 9th June 2021 by CERIC-ERIC, in the framework of the H2020 projects ACCELERATE and CALIPSOplus and the CEI cooperation fund. It will bring together junior researchers to expand their scientific knowledge about large-scale Research Infrastructures.

The 8 days long on-line training will introduce participants to the different techniques offered by CERIC Partner Facilities along with their applications. Among the covered topics, there will be electron paramagnetic resonance, electron microscopy, ion- and neutron-based techniques, nuclear magnetic resonance, and photon-based techniques in both the x-ray and the infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum. The program incorporates introductory sessions to each facility, practical sessions on various beamlines and instruments, a poster session and networking activities.

The event aims to create a unique opportunity for participants to feed their research careers with valuable theoretical and practical knowledge from experienced researchers. It is also the right environment for enlarging their professional network and exploring potential scientific collaborations and opportunities.

The event, open to researchers around the world, is primarily intended for young researchers (PhD students and postdocs) of physics, chemistry and biology, but more experienced researchers interested in the topic can also apply. The lectures will be given by leading experts in the field from CERIC partner facilities.

► The event’s program is available here.


The HERCULES Specialized Course is organized with the aim of promoting international scientific cooperation and initiatives to support science diplomacy. Through the event we aim to raise awareness about the possibility of using different advanced techniques of analysis in research focused on different fields. By bringing together researchers from different countries, the event will be an opportunity for constructive dialogue across national and cultural borders and differences, speaking the language of science as a universal tool.

In that regard, the event will support in: 1) creating bridges in scientific research and collaborations, and 2) reducing the barriers that prevent researchers from target countries to create a strong user community, which accesses and uses the facilities of European large-scale Research Infrastructures.

Selection Criteria

A scientific committee will select the participants that are most qualified to take part in the HSC, based on the career stage and motivation letter.

The number of participants is limited to 30, considering the structure of the sessions and practical tutorials.

Funding Details

A limited number of grants, offered by the Central European initiative (CEI), will be available, fully covering the participation fee. The grants will be offered to two participants from the following target countries (based on the nationality), selected by the scientific committee: Albania, Belarus, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Serbia, Slovakia, Ukraine, Moldova.

Note: The participants granted the bursary will have to pay the registration fee that will be later reimbursed after the end of the event, subject to their participation to at least 80% of the activities.

Registration and Fees

The participation fee is 100e (please note that the fees are strictly used for the development of the various sessions of the event, and not for commercial purposes).

Payment instructions will be communicated in the notification of acceptance to the selected participants.

► Submit your registration here.

  • Registration deadline: April 26th, 2021
  • Notification of acceptance: May 7th, 2021
  • Final registration deadline: May 17th, 2021
  • Notification to all registrants: May 24th, 2021

CERIC offers access through a single-entry point to more than 50 different and complementary state of the art techniques and support laboratories, distributed in 10 countries, with the submission of single or multi-technique proposals. A detailed description of the facilities available in CERIC can be found here.

The CERIC-ERIC HERCULES Specialized Course is co-funded by the Central European Initiative and the Horizon2020 projects ACCELERATE and CALIPSOplus. The respective grant agreement numbers of the two projects are as follow: ACCELERATE – 731112, CALIPSOplus – 730872.