Send your sample day: the ESRF call for industries is open!

Do you know what synchrotron X-rays can do?

If you have not used synchrotron X-rays yet, but your research or innovation could use  “making the invisible visible”, then our Send Your Sample Day is a great chance to find out what the ESRF nondestructive 3D micro and nano imaging techniques can do.

The ESRF (the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility), situated in Grenoble (France), is the world`s brightest synchrotron light source. It provides scientists with brilliant X-rays to unveil the structure of materials and the mechanism of life. On top of that, the large-scale facility is a major driver of industrial research and innovation, supporting industry in providing solutions to global challenges and boosting competitiveness.

Send Your Sample Day is an ESRF for Industry initiative, a free of charge opportunity offered to a selected number of newcomers, who will have the possibility to visualise microstructure of their sample.

Any industrial company can apply – you just have to complete a short application form (which can be found here) by Thursday 10 November 2022 at 4:00PM – CET.


Learn more about the call here!

Empowering the industry multipliers

The ENRIITC project strives to optimise the societal impact of Research Infrastructures by improving the engagement between RIs and industry in EU Member States.

Faced with the effects of the war in Ukraine, inflation and raw material bottlenecks, the European states are grappling with the delivery of ambitious Next Generation EU post-pandemic recovery projects in the midst of also a rising energy crisis and green transition ambitions.

Interest is strong in exploiting the innovation potential of RIs that are increasingly recognised as potential key partners for companies developing cutting-edge new health, green and digital transformation applications and services across industrial sectors.

In this scenario of heightened expectations and new opportunities for both RIs and companies, the ENRIITC “hub and spoke” model presented in the report D3.1, of pan-EU, one-stop-shop innovation officers’ multiplier network and support service working specifically to spur new RI-industry connections is poised to play an increasingly important role.

And with these structures on the table, the role of the principal multiplier persons, Industrial Liaisons Officers working at a national level and Industrial Contact Officers employed at the RIs, should be defined more closely.

The new ENRIITC report D3.5 offers a set of recommendations in the form of a vademecum of practical steps and Key Performance Indicators for focusing the effort of ICOs and ILOs and maximizing the impact.

The report makes specific recommendations of actions to:

  • Strengthen RIs role as key players and partners in the wider European innovation ecosystem
  • Professionalise and standardise the ILO and ICO competencies, job descriptions, training and career paths in Europe
  • Prioritise duties, initiatives and KPIs ILOs and ICOs need to undertake to make the ENRIITC Strategy for RI-Industry Cooperation (detailed in D3.2) a success
  • Help bridge the innovation gap by supporting the early development of key technologies for use in new societal applications.

CERN COURIER features ENRIITC: collaboration is the key!

© ℗®™ Joe McEntee – CERN Courier

The European Network for Research Infrastructures and Industry for Collaboration (ENRIITC) has emerged as something of a bridge-builder between large-scale science facilities and key stakeholders in industry since its formation in January 2020.

In the In Focus report on Big Science and Industry of CERN Courier, through an interview with Anne-Charlotte Joubert (ENRIITC project coordinator and grants officer at the European Spallation Source-ESS), it’s explained how ENRIITC is helping ILOs and ICOs to join the dots between big science and industry.

Success is all about longevity: if the ENRIITC network is strong and sustained, the project has succeeded.”What does that look like? I guess one tangible measure of success over the next decade will be the launch, and widescale adoption, of the ENRIITC Innovation and Industry Services Central Support Hub – a unifying vehicle to scale and diversify the innovation ecosystem connecting RIs with industry.

With over 500 network members – including more than 100 industry liaison and contact officers (ILOs/ICOs) from Europe’s big-science labs and the university research sector – ENRIITC’s goal is to accelerate the societal and economic impact of national and pan-European research programmes, working together to define best practices for industry’s relationship (as supplier, user or collaborator) with Europe’s large-scale research infrastructures (RIs).

In the article, not only the ENRIITC connection strategies towards ILOs, ICOs and industry have been analysed, but other important topics on which the project focuses from its kick off have been discussed, such as: support for training and education for our Members, the lessons-learned about the relationship between Europe’s large-scale research facilities and industry, the forecast on a potential ENRIITC N2 and much more.

Thanks again to CERN Courier for this great opportunity, the complete article can be found here!

We are looking forward to engaging with the community and to welcoming all the participants in our upcoming events at BSBF 2022 and at ICRI 2022!

The eRImote project

The eRImote project is the first to consider solutions for digital and remote service provision across RI domains and to look for transferable practices and new developments that will improve accessibility and resilience of RI infrastructures.

While existing processes will be collected, eRImote will also explore new solutions using defined use cases to develop and test their implementation in RI scenarios.

This will take us beyond the state-of-the-art for concrete solutions.

The eRImote consortium is relatively small with eight beneficiary participants representing four main ESFRI RI Roadmap domains.


However, the consortium extends much more broadly through the existing contacts and networking partners of each of the project participants, increasing the reach out to hundreds of individuals, other European and global RIs, scientific networks, RI users, industry partners and policy makers.

Learn more about the project here!

ENRIITC @IndTech: From Frontier Science to Frontier Industry – How basic and Big Science may be a seed for future needs

#ENRIITCyourCoffee Season 5 Episode 3 with Neutron Quality Label (R)

Welcome to the recap of #ENRIITCyourCoffee episode three of our fifth season. We continued with the topic of the previous episode that you can check out here – neutrons. We had the pleasure of hearing from Sandra Cabeza, Co-responsible scientist at SALSA Stress Diffractometer, Institute Laue Langevin (ILL).

What has been done before?

Sandra started off by explaining how neutron string diffraction characterisation is not a novel topic and there have already been efforts worldwide that culminated with a technological trend assessment in 2001. All the definitions and best practices were laid down (which are the hkR planes to measure in a monochromatic instrument) for a good starting point for system recession actions, or neutral materials and stress scanning. Unfortunately, these are general approaches for instrument alignment procedures and a broad scope of definitions and equations.

What is done now?

Sandra gives a great overview of the current communities and efforts on neutron strain result harmonisation at 03:04 in the video below. Broadly those can be divided into three:

  1. Neutron Techniques Standardisation for Structural Integrity (NET) – An in-kind working group between neutron sources, synchrotron sources, industry and academy to assess the reliability of the characterization of resilience stress through diffraction methods. Sandra describes this.
  2. BrigtNESS2 – Neutral ecosystem for sustainable service with science. This is to ensure the long-term sustainability of the user community, particularly for the engineering community.
  3. EAISTRESS – More industrially oriented and the main focus is on this data exchange procedures

Pilot projects for a common Neutron Quality Label for residual stress analysis

Sandra mentions that it has been a significant effort in developing definitions and measurements between all the institutes. She summarises the goal of the project well (at 05:23 in the video): to build confidence in the industry, meaning there is a method with ISO technological assessment standards and round-robin tests across the world.

“Therefore we said let’s stick together let’s define the similar samples that we have for aligning our instruments and reporting this precision and accuracy of the values. Let’s decide on a common sample and let’s start from scratch.”

Overall the goal was to define a protocol and a more precise guideline building on the ISO standard in addition to a common report template so we all know what is important. Check out the internal certification exercise below at 06:43.

From the internal certification exercise with 4 institutions they agreed that after the exercise all parties improved on 6 points as more efficient in calibration procedures, more accurate in sample alignment system, more robust in data analysis for entry scans and 3 more points that you can see from Sandra’s presentation at 09:51 in the video.

Later on, they complimented the exercise with an Airbus cylinder measurement with neutrons and all institutions had a similar result.

“We proved that we could actually enhance the industrial access to multiple facilities.”

In conclusion, Sandra confirmed that the results of the pilot projects meant that the collaborative method has given them a significant advantage both scientifically and economically. In the spirit of true collaboration, all conditions can be extended to other facilities and include more partners.

“The main or the ultimate objective of the BrightNESS² is this long-term sustainability of the community so I think we have proven here a good example that this is feasible when we work together.”

This was the end of Sandra’s presentation and the floor was open for the rest of our coffee break to pick Sandra’s brain for a great collaboration experience.

Find out more and browse the previous episodes here.

Call for EU to fund technology infrastructures

© SCIENCE BUSINESS | Florin Zubașcu

Europe needs technology proving grounds where industry can test and scale up new products. Christian Ehler MEP says this will lower the cost of bringing innovation to market and help Europe reach its green energy goals.

The EU should have a strategy for technology infrastructures in place by the time it launches the next research and innovation framework programme, says Horizon Europe co-rapporteur Christian Ehler MEP.

The ESFRI roadmap enables scientists from around Europe to choose the best labs for their experiments.

A similar roadmap is needed for technology infrastructures, providing information on facilities, equipment, capabilities and support services where industrial players can find support to commercialise new products, processes and services, in full compliance with EU regulations.

Read more here.

ENRIITC proposes the formation of a centralized hub to support innovation from Research Infrastructures

Innovation is created from the interaction and collaboration between science and business. Companies need support and simpler access to the opportunities for collaborations with Research Infrastructures (RIs). The ENRIITC project has built a pan-European network of national Industrial Liaison Officers and Industrial Contact Officers at Research Infrastructures (ILOs and ICOs). The establishment of a formal network will enable industry to become a full partner of RIs whether as a user, supplier, or co-creator.

ENRIITC supports the establishment of strategic, cross-border partnerships between industry and research infrastructures. A key instrumental milestone would be the establishment of a formal and sustainable hub supporting the new pan-European ICO and ILO network.

The core activity of the hub is to provide training activities, a repository of information and best practices, support for ICOs/ILOs. The hub should also host an interaction platform for ILOs and ICOs to discuss and optimize their engagement with industry and facilitate the flow of requests from companies. The knowledge from ENRIITC and other relevant projects will be hosted in the repository accessible to ILOs and ICOs and the content will continuously be improved and matured based on the experiences of the network participants.

The consolidation of a pan-European ICO and ILO network relies on the formation of the central “Innovation and Industry Services Central Support Hub”. This will be the centre of a hub-and-spoke network to support ICOs and ILOs in building fruitful relationships and exploiting the RIs innovation potential.

Here below a list of the missions that the proposed pan-European “Innovation and Industry Services Central Support Hub” will have.

  1. Define and update the training path and opportunities for ICOs and ILOs;
  2. Offer an exchange platform for collaboration between ILOs/ILOs on innovation;
  3. Coordinate the support offer provided to ICOs and ILOs;
  4. Offering a regular source of RI innovation success stories to complement those on RI scientific achievements, and operate an identity for ILOs and ICOs towards other European entities;
  5. Coordinate a network level approach with other pan-European entities, such as:
  • EIT, for building new partnerships with industry and aligning the policy with the needs of industry;
  • EIROFORUM, for coordinating industry aspects of Big Science facilities;
  • BSBF International Organising Committee, for collaboration and communication about the Big Science Business Forum event;
  • EOSC DIH, for being aligned with the actions taken to facilitate industry in finding useful services at EOSC level.

Key stakeholders in the hub

Industry Contact Officers (ICO) are research infrastructure staff in charge of developing business relations with all potential industrial suppliers of innovative components or services as well as encouraging the economical use of their facility by private players.

Industry Liaison Officers (ILO) are generally officially appointed by the Member States and Associated Countries to stimulate the collaboration among the national industry and the international research infrastructures, providing advice on business opportunities, R&D collaborations, calls for tenders and industrial services.

PERIIA ( is the informal association of individuals that are nationally appointed Industrial Liaison Officer (ILO) or Purchasing Advisor (PA) to any of the European Big Science Organisations, such as ESO, ESS, ESA, F4E/ITER, CERN, ESRF, XFEL, EMBL, and ILL. The PERIIA board (7 persons) is elected at a General Assembly typically convened during the Big Science Business Forum or the ITER Business Forum. The PERIIA board is proposed as the governing body for the industrial supplier aspects of the hub.

RI board is a new governance structure that should represent the group of ESFRI RIs, non-ESFRI transnational RIs and national RIs that are connected to the hub. The detailed role, members and governance model of the board should be defined in a dialogue with the RIs. The board is proposed as the governing body for the industrial user aspects of the hub.

Read more about ENRIITC Deliverable 3.1 here.


ENRIITC proposes a new “Research Infrastructures Innovation Preparedness Roadmap” to exploit the innovation potential of RIs

Early in the project, ENRIITC evaluated the status of play in the relationships between European Research Infrastructures (RIs) and industry which was published in “Report on the mapping of industry as a supplier and user” (D2.1).

The analysis highlighted areas for potential improvement since only half of the interviewed RIs employed an Industry Contact Officer (ICO), and only 60 per cent of them had a strategy for working with the industry.

However, it also emerged that RIs and Industry are ready to work together, and in the majority of cases, they strongly need an injection of support to kick off new sustainable and long-lasting relationships.

To respond to the actual gaps in the collaboration system between RIs and the industry, ENRIITC has now proposed five key initiatives shown in the Figure. The initiatives are presented in “Strategy to exploit the innovation potential of RIs” (D3.1):

  1. Establish a pan-European ICO and ILO network: The core activity of the hub is to provide advice and support to all manner of RIs in their engagement with the industry, drawing upon existing experience and good practice and building its body of knowledge as the hub matures. (See also this article)
  2. Adopt a set of core competencies for ICOs and ILOs: ENRIITC has defined a clear set of competencies and the advantages of having an Industry Contact Office in each RI. (See also D3.3)
  3. Each RI should review and implement specific key actions: 17 key areas with recommended actions are defined to help an RI improve the collaboration with industry and establish a common baseline for RIs for developing systematic innovation partnering industry-liaison programs. (See also D3.2)
  4. Building strategic alliance relationships. Establishing partnerships at the European level to ensure that the RI operational model and interaction modes with industry are understood and recognised so that RIs can seek more easily individual collaboration partners.
  5. Develop a European RI Innovation Strategy: Formulation of a European RI Innovation Strategy to describe the ambitions for better integration between RIs and industry. The strategy will enable RIs to be the core engine of the innovation supply chain facilitating the constituency of spin-offs, start-ups and partnerships with private entities in close cooperation with universities.

With this package of proposed actions, ENRIITC is pushing for realizing the strong socio-economic impact of RIs which was stated as a key ingredient in the concluding remarks of the ESFRI Roadmap 2021.

If you want to download the ENRIITC reports, click here



Increasing Research Infrastructures’ visibility and potential towards Industry

In the frame of BSBF 2022 – Big Science Business Forum, ENRIITC is organising an event on 04th October 2022. As part of this event, ENRIITC in collaboration with CERIC-ERIC, will be organizing training sessions focused on ‘Increasing Research Infrastructures’ visibility and potential towards Industry’.

It will bring together Industrial Liaison and Contact Officers (ILOs/ICOs) of European Research Infrastructures and Industry representatives to exchange experiences, best practices and knowledge on the topic. The event will be also a networking opportunity to strengthen the collaboration between the two parties.

The day will be split into 3 main phases:

  • Training and Workshop for ICOs and ILOs;
  • The ENRIITC Networking Conference;
  • ILOs and ICOS training to strengthen the collaboration of the networks.



CERIC, the Central European Research Infrastructure Consortium, is an innovation ecosystem offering high-level instruments and expertise for structural, molecular and atomic investigations on materials, biomaterials and nanomaterials, to meet critical safety and performance requirements and assess their capabilities and limitations, even in extreme conditions. More in CERIC website.