FAIR joins the Big Science Business Forum
The Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research in Europe (FAIR GmbH) makes extensive procurements, from the smallest screw to high-tech consultancy, often with a requirement of extremely high quality and innovation.
This high-tech branch is known as Big Science and for the first time, eighteen of the world’s largest research facilities gathered to create Big Science Business Forum to present their offers to European industry. BSBF was a one-stop shop for companies from all over Europe, where Big Science facilities could give them insight into our future investments and purchases in just one location over the course of a few days.
BSBF 2018 was the first ever conference of its kind, to which FAIR contributed and thus consolidated its place in the world’s big-league of scientific facilities.
The conference took place in Copenhagen from 26th -28th February, hosted by the Danish Ministry of Higher Education and Science and BigScience.dk. Altogether, some 1,000 delegates from more than 500 companies and organizations spanning approximately 30 countries attended. FAIR was represented by the In-Kind and Procurement team (David Urner and Sonia Utermann) and FAIR Legal (Felix Arndt). Among the other Big Science facilities attending were e.g. CERN, ESA, the European XFEL and DESY.
David Urner presented FAIR to an audience of potential suppliers and in-kind procurement experts from other Big Science facilities. His presentation marked the launch of FAIR’s new in-kind procurement portal, that gives potential bidders access to FAIR tenders. Several new industrial FAIR liaison officers (ILOs) have been nominated to offer the best – and simplest – communication between FAIR and industrial partners, a route that has proven so successful for CERN, ESS and ESA.
The FAIR delegation met potential new providers of cryogenic systems, vacuum chambers and magnets. In private meetings with delegates from ITER, ESS, European XFEL and CERN, they were able to exchange tips, legal texts and experiences in in-kind procurement in order to learn from each other and further improve the work at FAIR. They learned from potential suppliers how to make it more attractive for them to provide their services to FAIR; not just by expanding on our procurement portal and strengthening our network of ILOs, but also, for example, by encouraging syndication amongst small and medium-sized enterprises. The FAIR delegations looks forward to putting the new knowledge into practice.