Report by Ian Vickridge
The First RADIATE Summer School was held in Paris, France, at the auditorium of the Centre de Restoration et de Recherche des Musées de France (C2RMF), in the Palais du Louvre, from 10 to 11 October 2019. It immediately preceded the 24th International Conference on Ion Beam Analysis, which was held in Antibes from 14 to 18 October. Participants of the summer school had the chance to attend the subsequent IBA Conference tutorial on 12 October.
The first two days of tutorials aimed to give a solid base of the physics underlying Ion Beam Analysis. On Day 1, the basics of collision physics were presented, leading to derivation of basic relations for quantities such as the kinematic factor for elastic collisions, the Rutherford cross section, the Bohr stopping power with explanations of the various refinements that were made to this by Bethe, Bloch, and others, and the fundamentals of ionization and de-excitation of atoms – the basic processes leading to x-ray emission (PIXE), amongst other things.
After the final lecture, a dozen or so participants made short (5-10 minutes) presentations of the work or research projects. This exercise was well respected by the participants (a maximum of 5 slides) and appreciated not only by the participants, but also by the lecturers who were present. The rest of the participants presented their work during a similar session on Day 2.
Day 2 was dedicated to tutorials on the practical realization of IBA techniques, starting with the widely used elastic scattering techniques, then PIXE and finally NRA and PIGE. The final lecture was a presentation of the main ideas and some cases underlining the estimation of uncertainties in quantities measured by IBA. It was particularly satisfying to see this presented to early stage researchers, since often uncertainty estimates are only made as a last touch after a series of experiments, whereas IBA is a quantitative method that merits serious attention being paid to uncertainty estimates.
Although initially not foreseen, it was possible to organise a visit to the C2RMF restoration and research laboratories, including the AGLAE accelerator dedicated to IBA for cultural heritage.
The Friday evening Summer School dinner was held at the Lycée Jean Drouant training restaurant in central Paris. A gourmet meal, cooked by trainee chefs and served by trainee waiters in an Art Deco décor reminiscent of the liner ‘Normandy’, was very much appreciated by the Summer School participants.
The Summer School was attended by 23 participants from 11 countries. The Tutorials on Applications of IBA on Saturday 12 October were in addition attended by a further 25 participants, and the topics presented lead to lively discussions, in particular with regards to to the place of ERDA as a ‘the most powerful ion beam technique in materials science’.
It is my great pleasure to sincerely thank all of the lecturers, who prepared clear presentations that were greatly appreciated by the Summer School and Tutorial participants. I would also like to thank the participants themselves, for their interest in the courses and their willingness to participate, through their presentations and also through their questions and the resulting discussions.