“Soft” Inauguration of the Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East (SESAME) Center and 13th session of its Council
3 November 2008, Allan Jordan
The occasion will mark the handing over to SESAME of its building and the move there of its staff, as well as the installation of the microtron.
The “soft” inauguration of SESAME will take place on 3rd November 2008 in Allan, Jordan, under the auspices of H.M. King Abdullah II Ben Al-Hussein of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and with the participation of the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr. Koïchiro Matsuura.
The ground-breaking ceremony for the SESAME building was held on 6 January 2003 under the auspices of the King of Jordan and with the participation of the Director-General of UNESCO. There is a plaque at the SESAME site commemorating the event. The SESAME building was handed over to SESAME earlier this year and the Secretariat of SESAME, which was previously operating from the premises of UNESCO Amman, is now fully installed there. The “soft” inauguration will mark this event.
Though the SESAME Centre has been in existence since 2004 and has been functioning since then both as regards work on the upgrading of the machine and the training of a users community, it is today, with the building in place and the microtron installed, that the true beginnings of the laboratory are seen. Once it is fully operational in 2011, the region will have a major centre of excellence which will have a performance equivalent to the modern synchrotron, the so-called “third generation” sources. SESAME will provide the region of the Middle East with a world-class laboratory for basic research and many applications. Several hundred scientists from the region and other parts of the world are expected to use this facility so essential for many disciplines ranging from physics to the biological and medical sciences and archaeology.
At the 13th meeting of the Council of SESAME (3-4 November 2008) which will immediately follow the “soft” inauguration of SESAME, Professor Herwig Schopper will hand over the presidency of Council to Professor Sir Chris Llewellyn-Smith. Professor Schopper, a former Director-General of the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN), is a world-renowned physicist who is one of the founding fathers of SESAME and has provided remarkable leadership for the project for very nearly 10 years. Professor Llewellyn-Smith is currently Chairman of the ITER Council and the Consultative Committee for Euratom on Fusion, and is also a former Director-General of CERN. Until recently he was Director of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) Culham, with responsibility for the UK fusion programme and operation of the Joint European Torus (JET).
For more information please contact Ms. C. Formosa-Gauci