From several reports and podcasts, it seems that Europe’s leaders are not expecting a smooth ride in 2017 after a year marked by political upheaval, extremist attacks, unchecked immigration, and a rising military instability worldwide. Britain is struggling with its Brexit, America will soon inaugurate a new and surprising president. Elections in the Netherlands, France and Germany will certainly be important factors for European political stability in this New Year.
Rocío Borrego Varillas is a young postdoctoral researcher in Physics, who after graduating from the University of Salamanca in Spain, obtained a Marie-Curie fellowship. She is at present Research Fellow at the Politecnico of Milano where she works in the field of ultrafast spectroscopy in the UV range.
On 15 December 2015, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/70/212 declaring 11 February as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. The United Nations invites all Member States including academia, individuals and society in general, to observe the International Day of Women and Girls in Science to promote the full and equal participation of women and girls in education, training, employment and decision-making processes in the sciences.
This past May, IBM Research announced the Quantum Experience, an experimental cloud-enabled quantum computing platform. The technology essentially made 35 years of IBM’s quantum computing research available to students, researchers and general science enthusiasts, at the click of a button.
During the EPS Council held in Mulhouse in April 2016, the Executive Committee presented a new proposal to increase the fees for Individual Members. The delegates voted in favour of it. The categories of EPS membership, as well as the new fees, are shown below and take effect in 2017.
The EPS has two Early Career prizes to be awarded each year, one each for achievements of a mainly theoretical or experimental nature.
On December 5th, in the presence of the President of Switzerland Johann Schneider-Ammann, PSI inaugurated the X-ray Free Electron Laser facility, SwissFEL, after 4 years of construction. The facility consists of a low emittance injector, a 6 GeV linear electron accelerator, a string of 12 undulator magnets designed for FEL lasing at photon energies of up to 12.8 keV and photon beamlines and end-stations. The SwissFEL building is located in a forest site near the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI). Its total building length is 740m. In its initial configuration, SwissFEL is equipped with two end stations for user experiments dedicated to studies in photochemistry/photobiology, structural biology and condensed matter physics.
Project successes include new open-source simulation program
The European Cluster of Advanced Laser Light sources (EUCALL), a European Union-funded project that aims to foster links between accelerator- and laser-driven X-ray facilities, has completed the first year of its three year project period. The project successfully met all twenty milestones for the year, producing a new open-source tool for experiment simulations and developing specifications for several pieces of new scientific equipment.
The 15th Young Minds Action Committee meeting took place in London on October 28th. It was a short but intense meeting, resulting in some big news we are eager to share with you.
First of all, we would like to welcome three new Action Committee members, as well as thank the members who are going to leave us.
This year the Liechtenstein Scientific Society held its annual meeting in the premises of the “Lawena-Museum”.
That is an interesting Electricity Museum situated in the oldest hydro-electric Power Plant in Liechtenstein in the Lawena valley. Last Year Dr. Cyril Deicha donated hundreds of historic scientific, technical and didactic objects to complete the original collection of the museum. Now it is the largest collection of its kind in the region. In the summer the museum is open to the public on several weekends (www.lkw.li.)
On 28th November 2016, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry announced that the elements 113, 115, 117, and 118 are now formally named.
The name nihonium with the symbol Nh for element 113 was proposed by the discoverers at RIKEN Nishina Center for Accelerator-Based Science (Japan); the name came from Nihon which is one of the two ways to say “Japan” in Japanese, and literally mean “the Land of the Rising Sun”.
The EU Space Awareness Project [EUSPACE-AWE] – funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme – uses the excitement of space to attract young people to science and technology and to stimulate European and global citizenship. The main goal of the project is to increase the number of young people that choose space-related careers.