What is ESS?
The Ministers of Science and Technology Policy of OECD, the umbrella organization of the world leading economies recommended that there should be a next generation high power spallation neutron source facility on each continent, America, Asia and Europe. Since then the first two centers started operation in the US and Japan, respectively. In Europe the first roadmap of the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI), published in 2006, prominently included the European Spallation Source (ESS) as a mature priority project for Europe, which will surpass its predecessors in US and Japan.
ESS is an accelerator-based facility, producing intense neutron beams by the spallation process for the study of atomic, molecular or nanoscale structure, properties and functionality of all kind of materials. Research capabilities of this complex would exceed that of the already existing facilities ten- or even hundredfold. Spallation sources operate in an environmental-friendly fashion, without producing fissile nuclear waste. ESS was classified as one of the most important investments by the October 2006 roadmap of the European Strategy Forum for Research Infrastructures (ESFRI).
The European complex ESS will be based on the so-called long pulse spallation source concept created and elaborated by Hungarian Professor Ferenc Mezei. The performance of this method is even greater than that of those used at the latest Japanese and American neutron source centers. As a result, ESS will be the world’s leading facility in its field, offering unprecedented research opportunities for the European scientific community in many fields, such as physics, engineering, chemistry, life sciences, pharmacology, electronics, nanoscience and nanotechnology, energy research, cultural heritage, archeology, etc.
ESS will be of the largest scientific investments in Europe. For decades, it would provide unrivalled research possibilities for approximately 5000 European researchers and experts. According to previous estimations, the scientific results created here will result each year in about 1000 scientific publications in reputed scientific journals covering a tremendously broad variety of fields of both basic and applied research.