2 H I G H L I G H T S 2 0 2 2 I
The ESRF Highlights 2022 marks two years of successful operation of the ESRF s Extremely Brilliant Source (EBS), and we are very happy to present to you some of the first examples of EBS science.
During 2022, the EBS made striking progress in terms of beamtime availability and reliability, in line with a meticulous preventive maintenance programme and thanks to solving some of the teething issues which, until 2021, were responsible for a beam availability of 96%. In 2022, beam availability reached 99%, and the quest for perfection will continue in 2023.
2022 has been a very challenging year due to the still- present COVID-19 pandemic, with which we all are still learning to cope, as well as a profound international crisis caused by the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation. This crisis is hitting European countries with major energy cost and inflation increases, and the related financial pressure is a prime concern for the ESRF. We have responded with an approach in which the service to our users will not be compromised, as excellent quality in terms of beam delivery and the experimental programme is the trademark of the ESRF. In fact, both user operation and the construction and refurbishments of the beamlines have progressed steadily and according to plan in 2022.
However, some important decisions have had to be taken in 2022 as will undoubtedly be the case in the coming years to ensure the optimal use of ESRF resources and to maintain the attractiveness of the facility in the immediate- and medium-term. In order to maintain the same quality with reduced resources, some of our plans and projects will have to be postponed. On this basis, in
2022, we delayed the implementation of the Data Strategy Implementation Plan (DSIP) as well as the refurbishment plans of one beamline (ID17), where operation has been put on hold in view of the development of a modern and focused medical science programme during 2023. With respect to the DSIP, its implementation is primordial for an increasing number of beamlines exploiting EBS, and in 2023 we will have to identify alternative approaches that will enable the ESRF to set up data management tools to support its user community.
EBS provides the research community with new scientific opportunities. It is already a science powerhouse with impressive results in vital fields including sub- cellular imaging of human organs, time-resolved serial crystallography, new materials for energy and industry, and the studies of key molecular components of our universe, such as the discovery of new phases of water that may exist in giant planets.
For 2022, the scientific community applied for the use of EBS beamlines by submitting almost 2000 proposals, and almost half of them received beamtime in more than 1500 experimental sessions. These numbers are very similar to those of 2015, i.e., after the delivery of the Upgrade Programme Phase I, and they reflect the increasing use of structured beamtime applications and granting procedures made possible by the new access mode pilot projects. These new modes will become fully available to the user community from the winter 2023 application rounds. They were developed at the ESRF (and endorsed by the ESRF Scientific Advisory Committee and Council) thanks to resources made available by the European Commission s Horizon2020-funded STREAMLINE grant.
D E A R E S R F U S E R , D E A R R E A D E R