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New action plan for ESS venture ready – what lies ahead by 2025?

Danish preparatory work is proceeding well for the European research facility European Spallation Source (ESS), which is jointly hosted by Denmark and Sweden. This is according to an advisory group in a new action plan that lays out the status of the ongoing ESS venture towards 2025.

For example, the industry portal LINX has been established, whereby companies can obtain help in developing and utilising new advanced materials in collaboration with facilities such as ESS, MAX IV and XFEL. Additionally, all universities across the country have produced concrete plans for the work with the ESS in the coming years.

Furthermore, Denmark will host the large European conference Big Science Business Forum next year, which is also one of the initiatives in the action plan. In recent years, initiatives worth a total of DKK 250 million have been launched to support the future use of the ESS.

Even though there has been progress across all the ten objectives of the ESS strategy, there are still individual areas where there is a need for an increased effort, according to the advisory group. The action plan therefore contains a number of proposals to adjust future efforts. For example, the financing of a number of internationally-recognised ”beacon” environments, which was one of the main proposals of the ESS strategy. These environments have therefore become part of the large RESEARCH2025 catalogue of prioritised areas for research investment in the coming years.

The beacon research environments are expected to play a crucial role in the commercial utilisation of the ESS as well as building bridges to the rest of the Danish society.

This is the first time a status update of the Danish efforts has been published since the national strategy for the European Spallation Source was launched in 2015.

Facts about the ESS

  • The European Spallation Source (ESS) is a research facility based on the world's most powerful neutron source. It is being built in Lund, Sweden, and will have an associated data centre in Copenhagen.
  • It costs about DKK 14 billion. Approximately half of the associated construction costs are being provided by the host nations of Sweden and Denmark.
  • The action plan is developed by the Danish ESS advisory group, which is an independent advisory group established by the former Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation.