Lead: Dr Laure Sabatier, CEA, France
Research infrastructures are committed to provide access to the most advanced, unique, and large-scale resources, instruments and expertise in Europe. These services enable European scientists to conduct competitive and cutting edge research. The necessity to focus on research infrastructures in Radiation protection has been highlighted in the HLEG report in 2009. Since then, large EURATOM projects such as DoReMi, OPERRA, STAR… include specific WPs and tasks dedicated to infrastructures.
Surveys performed in former projects have revealed that the prevailing opinion is that most necessary infrastructures are already available although not at the bench of each user. Indeed, besides the funding of experiments, the access to state of the art infrastructures is a major bottle-neck. It will be the major focus of CONCERT-WP6: Access to Infrastructures.
Infrastructures include so-called large infrastructures such as exposure facilities including those for animal and plant experiments (both laboratory and field facilities), epidemiological cohorts, sample banks, databases and analytical platforms, models and tools (including e-infrastructures). The WP6 tasks and subtasks are described in the scheme.
WP 6 tasks and subtasks
The first focus will be the listing of infrastructures and the description of requested criteria. Extensive lists of relevant large infrastructures were generated for low dose research, radioecology, and dosimetry, but they need to be updated, to include those of all European partners and to be completed for the other radiation protection platforms, NERIS, and Medical Use. The resulting database will have to be searchable. Then, to best utilize existing resources, the emphasis will be on promoting the visibility and use of mature infrastructures, so as to avoid unnecessary costs and duplication. Moreover, the sustainability of rare but necessary facilities (such as those for internal contamination) will be given priority. Furthermore, an effort will be made to harmonize practices and protocols amongst multiple facilities.
The use of certain types of infrastructures or the analysis of resulting data requires a high level of expertise and training. Working closely with WP7- Education and training, WP6 will examine the possibility to develop specific training courses built around the use of infrastructures. Last but not least, funding strategies will be developed.
The CONCERT Infrastructure Bulletin will be published each month (10/year). In order to develop the means to better inform radiation protection scientists of those facilities that are best adapted to their research needs and to increase the visibility of infrastructures that fulfil recommended criteria. Three infrastructures will be described; one amongst exposure platforms, one amongst databases, sample banks, and cohorts and one amongst analytical platforms, models and tools. These will then be published as a web-Handbook.
How can I subscribe to the monthly Bulletin AIR² (Access to Infrastructures for Radiation protection Research)?
Please send a request to Maria Panagiotopoulou (firstname.lastname@example.org), indicating in the subject box “AIR² Bulletin”.
How can I contribute to an issue of AIR² and get my infrastructure featured?
Please contact Maria Panagiotopoulou (email@example.com), indicating in the subject box “AIR² Bulletin”.
Which types of Infrastructures are represented in the AIR² Bulletin?
Infrastructures are grouped into 3 categories:
- Exposure platforms (including contaminated sites, observatories)
- Databases, Samples banks and Cohorts
- Analytical platforms, Models and Tools