First UK In-Kind Contribution to ESS Successfully Installed and Commissioned
07 Sep 2015




Four state of the art laboratory facilities delivered and commissioned at ESS by ASTeC and STFC Technical Department, marking first UK in-kind contribution


The European Spallation Source (ESS) will be the brightest neutron source in the world and will be built in Lund, Sweden. The project will be funded by Sweden and multiple other European nations.  The UK as part of its commitment to ESS is providing £165 million and STFC is responsible for the management of that budget.

STFC and ESS formally agreed the first work package at the end of 2014 for a cost of £1.02 million. Daresbury Laboratory ASTeC and Technical Department staff have worked to stringent deadlines and budget delivering four state of the art laboratory facilities within seven months from procurement to delivery at the temporary ESS premises in Sweden.

The systems include:

1) Outgassing facility – to provide in vacuum material characterisation
2) Calibration facility – formal calibration of vacuum diagnostics
3) Integration facility – in house controls/vacuum testing prior to installation on ESS
4) Particle test facility – ESS will be a ‘particle free’ accelerator and this facility will allow ESS to determine their procedures and make key design choices.

After ESS staff formally accepted all systems at DL in early July they were then shipped and met by a small team of ASTeC and TD staff - Keith Middleman, Mark Pendleton, John Stowell, Paul Aden and James Wilson - where they spent a week installing and commissioning the systems.

At the end of a busy week, the ESS team formally accepted all 4 systems in the presence of numerous senior staff and ESS local press. Peter Ladd head of the vacuum group and Marcelo Juni Ferreira currently deputy expressed how thrilled and privileged they were and couldn’t thank the local team and STFC enough for their contribution. They also highlighted the advanced position of the group, which would now be able to utilise the facilities for making key decisions towards the ESS Accelerator design.