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Renewed agreement with Japanese research organisations to bolster cooperation in neutron science and technology

ANSTO renewed its Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC)  operated by the High Energy Accelerator Research Organisation (KEK)  and Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA). Now broadened to include their partner Comprehensive Research Organization for Science and Society (CROSS), the signing took place early in the year and a celebratory workshop was held late July.

J-PARC group photo


The agreement with J-PARC which commenced in 2015 concluded last year.

“We have strong links with our associates in Japan and this agreement will further enhance productive collaborations to benefit both Australia, Japan and the world” said ANSTO CEO Shaun Jenkinson, who signed the agreement.

The Director of J-PARC, Prof Takashi Kobayashi said that the agreement would expand the development of neutron scattering science for ANSTO, J-PARC and the world.  

The celebratory workshop included presentations from organisational representatives, including Dr Jamie Schulz, Leader of the Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering at ANSTO, and explored areas of possible cooperation.

The renewed agreement establishes a comprehensive framework for research collaboration using neutron scattering science at the respective facilities. It encompasses an exchange of scientists, engineers, and other specialists for participation in experiments, and research and development activities.  The areas of collaboration focus on a wide range of techniques using neutrons, which can be complemented by deuteration, available from the comprehensive suite of neutron scattering instruments at ANSTO and J-PARC.

Under the agreement, the participating organisations can provide and exchange samples, materials, and equipment, as well as exchange information and data on scientific and technical activities directly or through seminars, workshops and meetings. The previous five-year agreement enabled productive collaborations using deuteration and neutron instruments in studies of welding defects, the development of a new deuteration methods for ionic liquids, and investigations of the dynamics of rubber tyre materials, among others.

The new MOU includes plans for a series of science and technology workshops on the use of neutron instruments for the characterisation of material structure and dynamic phenomena, as well as the use of neutron-based ancillary techniques and tools. The workshops will be held virtually over the next months. Prof Hiroyuki Aoki of JAEA, Dr Masato Matsuura of CROSS, and Dr Nicolas de Souza of ANSTO, are organising the workshops, which have contributions from neutron and deuteration scientists at ANSTO and J-PARC.

“The fact that our workshops will be online because of COVID-19 restrictions, opens up the possibility of more people taking part,” said Dr Nicolas de Souza, Senior Instrument Scientist.

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