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SA-JINR Collaboration

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In 2005, the Republic of South Africa (RSA) and the Russian Federation (RF) signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) that led to South Africa becoming an associate member of the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR). Amongst other things, the agreement enabled research opportunities and training of South African postgraduate students in the following research areas of JINR:
I. Accelerator Technology – This thematic area includes the development of technologies associated with producing accelerated ion-beams, including: ion-sources, charge breeders, mass selectors, beam cooling, accelerators, and beam optics of stable as well as radioactive ion-beams.

II. Focal Areas of Heavy Ion Physics Research Theme under the SA-JINR agreement- Heavy ion physics research is undertaken with the suite of accelerators located at the Flerov Laboratory for Nuclear Reactions (FLNR) at the JINR. Focal areas are: (i) nuclear-reactor materials modification by swift heavy ions; (ii) Nuclear Structure Theory.

III. Applied nuclear thematic- The focus will be on development and applications of technologies using ion bombardment with swift heavy ions. The applications could be, for instance: in track etched polymeric films for gas separation membranes; or super hydrophobic surfaces; stress testing of electronic circuits for space technologies; creation of anti-bogus labelling; volt-ampere characteristics of semiconducting polymers for sensors; secondary structured surfaces; improved adhesion between metal and polymers, etc.

IV. Theoretical physics and computing- The thematic area will involve Few-body problems in nuclear physics including multi-cluster nuclear systems and hypernuclei, dense and hot nuclear matter, simulations for nuclear collisions in the NICA energy region and Statistical methods applied to nuclear physics.

V. Education – Covers all aspects of education within the SA-JINR framework and these include the SA-JINR Student Practice which is a 3 week educational even aimed at exposing South African students to world class scientific equipment, scientific research and expert international rated scientists JINR. This also includes conferences and student visits and supervision at the JINR. The thematic area (Education) is also concerned with facilitating the placement of students and research scientist in various projects and laboratories as part of its response to human capital development.