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ASI-CERN framework agreement

Signed in Geneva on 16 April during "AMS Days", the agreement will see the two organisations collaborate over a wide range of areas of common interest from theoretical and basic research

On 16 April CERN, the European organisation for nuclear research, and ASI, the Italian Space Agency, signed a wide-ranging framework agreement for technological and scientific collaboration. The agreement, signed by CERN Director General Rolf Heuer and ASI President Roberto Battiston, was formalised during "AMS Days", the three-day event dedicated to the latest results from the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer.

commented that: "This is an extremely important agreement that leads on from those signed by CERN and ESA last year. Our aim is to establish a framework of reference for scientific and technological development in the many areas of mutual interest for our organisations, exchanging information and experts as well as working on joint projects".

The agreement covers a very wide range of areas, from theoretical and basic research and all the related applications, through to joint development of new technology - including micro-technology and advanced materials. The two organisations will therefore collaborate in the design, testing and calibration of components, devices, space systems and payloads.

At the same time, potential forms of collaboration include - among others - an exchange of personnel, new education and training programs (including study grants), coordination of the respective research programs, and optimisation of resources to take full advantage of the opportunities offered by European programs such as Horizon 2020.

The agreement, which will see a "Steering and Coordination Committee" set up with representatives from both organisations, formally came into effect when it was signed and, apart from the usual termination clauses, has no fixed expiry.