First JINR Information Centre in international organization opens in Tunisia

News, 08 December 2023

On 4 December, the JINR Information Centre and Virtual Laboratory officially opened at the headquarters of the Arab Atomic Energy Agency (AAEA) in Tunisia. JINR Director Grigory Trubnikov and AAEA General Director Salem Hamdi signed a Memorandum of Understanding due to the expiration of the previous one. The parties concluded they had successfully implemented all the provisions of the 2016 Memorandum and signed a new, permanent agreement. On the same day, Grigory Trubnikov participated in an AAEA Executive Board meeting and made a report on the Institute’s focus areas.

At the ceremony, Grigory Trubnikov noted that the opening of the JINR Information Centre at the AAEA headquarters was an important step towards developing the Institute’s partnership with the countries of the Middle East and North Africa and maintaining the image of the largest international scientific centre. “The cooperation between JINR and the Arab Atomic Energy Agency has already proved to be productive – in 2023, JINR launched a competitive long-term internship programme for AAEA. Its six winners represented Yemen, Jordan, and Egypt. As a JINR Member State, Egypt certainly plays a special role in promoting the Institute’s cooperation with the countries of the region. The successful development of our partnership and the active engagement of Egyptian specialists in the Institute’s programmes is a positive example for other member countries of the Agency,” JINR Director commented. He said that a new educational programme, the three-month ASPYRE internship for young scientists and engineers of the AAEA member countries, will be launched in the near future as part of the work of the Infocentre. Participants will study in JINR research groups using electronic accelerators and other basic facilities. Additionally, there will be a special programme aimed at promoting women in science. Grigory Trubnikov expressed confidence that there is significant potential for the development of JINR Information Centre at AAEA.

Salem Hamdi stressed that the JINR-AAEA cooperation was on the rise and called the opening of the JINR Information Centre and Virtual Laboratory at the Agency’s headquarters a historic moment. He noted that this was an outstanding result of the efforts made by JINR and AAEA to develop bilateral cooperation. “Today’s event marks an important milestone, the establishment of the first JINR Information Centre in an international organization, as well as the launch of the first AAEA training and education centre,” Salem Hamdi stressed. “On behalf of the AAEA Executive Board, I express our heartfelt gratitude to the JINR Directorate and employees for their unwavering support for the Agency,” he said.

The head of the new IC, Ibrahim Khalifa, has undergone training at the JINR University Centre in order to study the potential of the Virtual Laboratory. During the opening ceremony, he delivered a speech on joint plans of JINR and AAEA for 2024 and outlined opportunities provided by the JINR IC to the Agency’s member countries. Nikita Sidorov, a software engineer at VBLHEP at JINR, made a report on the work of JINR Information Centres, principles of operation of the Virtual Laboratory, and the activities of the JINR University Centre.