The world's largest conference on neutron radiation began in Russia

On June 30, 2019, the 7th European Conference on Neutron Scattering (ECNS 2019) began its work in St. Petersburg. The opening ceremony was attended by the Acting Governor of St. Petersburg Alexander Beglov and the Chairman of the ECNS 2019 Conference, President of the NRC "Kurchatov Institute", Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences Mikhail Kovalchuk.

"Modern global, breakthrough scientific projects are based on megascience facilities — the extremely complex installations, where all modern technological achievements are concentrated, which are the “points of growth” and development of fundamentally new branches of science and technology. Therefore, today it is possible to conduct research at the atomic level, to design new materials with desired properties, only by combining the capabilities of synchrotron and neutron radiation. Sources of synchrotron and neutron radiation become the metrological basis of the modern technological process in materials science, nanobiotechnology, medicine and even research on cultural heritage objects", - said Mikhail Kovalchuk, when opening the Conference.

He also noted that a federal program for the development of synchrotron and neutron research infrastructure is being launched in Russia and the Kurchatov Institute is the leading scientific organization there. "Such a program will provide an opportunity to transfer the culture of scientific research in Russia to a qualitatively new level. After all, the complementary use of neutrons and synchrotron radiation will also allow to obtain fundamentally new information about the atomic structure and dynamics of the vital processes of living objects — it will create scientific groundwork for the development of nature-like technologies", - explained the President of NRC "Kurchatov Institute".

After the opening ceremony, Mikhail Kovalchuk delivered a lecture on “Nature-Like Technologies: New Opportunities and Global Challenges,” then a corresponding member of RAS Victor Aksenov (NRC "Kurchatov Institute", Russia) spoke about the development prospects of the PIK research reactor. The topic of global challenges and global research experience using the unique properties of neutron radiation was continued by leading scientists from Germany and the UK. Prof. Dr. Sebastian M. Schmidt from the Julich Research Center spoke about the European neutron landscape and Professor Robert McGreevy, representing the ISIS accelerator complex, made a presentation on the League of Advanced European Neutron Sources.

The conference will last until July 5. The event will bring together more than 650 representatives of the global scientific neutron community from 43 countries. The program includes presentations by scientists from leading research centers: NRC "Kurchatov Institute" (Russia), Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (Russia), ISIS Accelerator Complex (Great Britain), Leon Brillouin Laboratory (France), European Spallation Source ESS (Sweden), Julich Research Center (Germany), Munich Technical University (Germany), Paul Scherrer Institute (Switzerland), National Institute for Materials Science (Japan), National Institute of Standards and Technology (USA), etc.

In addition, this year, in parallel with the main program of the Conference, three micro-symposiums will be held: “Scientific Methods for Cultural Heritage" (July 1-2), “Nuclear Medicine” (July 2-3), “Synchrotron and neutron research and infrastructure" (July 3-4). The format of micro-symposia includes plenary and poster presentations.

European Conference on Neutron Scattering held every four years and is the most ambitious platform for discussing recent events and achievements in the application of neutron scattering in all fields of science. The organizer of the ECNS 2019 conference is the NRC "Kurchatov Institute".

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