SAINTS – Overview
The SAINTS (Southern African Institute for Nuclear Technology and Sciences) aims to empower students and staff by the provision of excellent education, training and practice opportunities.
Some of the key aims and objectives of the SAINTS are: the improvement of the throughput post-‐graduate students linked to research at iThemba LABS; the improvement of research outputs (dissertations, publications, presentations) of students and staff at iThemba LABS; and enhance general research/supervision skills and specialized research-‐related knowledge of students and staff.
The SAINTS operates like a department at iThemba LABS. It is headed by a Co-‐ ordinator (currently Prof. Richard Newman who is jointly appointed with Stellenbosch University). The SAINTS started operating from September 2018.
The SAINTS is busy buildi consortium of partners. The current local partners are the University of Cape Town, North West University, Stellenbosch University and the University of Venda.
Memoranda of Agreement have also been signed with the INSTN, France and GSI/FAIR with regards collaboration on education and training.
The SAINTS has also partnered with organizers of the ANSTT Workshop Series (held at iThemba LABS) which is mainly funded by the STFC (UK), to organize satellite workshops to the main ANSTT event. These workshops focused on enhancing data analysis skills of post-‐graduate students. The SAINTS is currently offering courses (university Honours level) to students from the University of the Western Cape, University of Zululand, Stellenbosch University and North West University. These courses are aligned to the niche research and development areas of iThemba LABS namely, accelerator physics, radiation protection and radiobiology. The SAINTS has collaborated with Stellenbosch University and the University of the Western Cape on the presentation of courses on Research Skills and Data Analysis with Python, respectively.
The key offerings of the SAINTS include an annual Physics Summer School, an annual Summer Practice (at the JINR, Dubna), workshops (e.g. data analysis, research skills, writing, computer programming), short courses (e.g. radiobiology, accelerator physics, radiation protection, materials characterization), Distinguished Scientist Lecture Series, Catalyst Lecture Series (generally by senior doctoral students), GSI/FAIR-‐iThemba LABS SAINTS Research Fellowship (3 month for doctoral students to visit GSI/FAIR), the SAINTS Prestige Scholarships (full-‐cost) and the Erasmus-‐Mundus Masters positions (at iThemba LABS).
The SAINTS is currently involved with the following initiatives: the upgrade of a dormitory (mainly for visiting students), establishment of SAINTS offices, training laboratories, lecture venues; the development of a Radiation Safety Course (in collaboration with INSTN, France), and establishment of a new Joint Chapter of the IEEE in South Africa (involving the following societies: Nuclear Plasma Science, Magnetics, Instrumentation and Professional Communication), and the development of a database of post-‐graduate students using iThemba LABS research facilities.
Prof. Richard Newman
iThemba LABS, NRF
Tel.: +27 21 843 1411