Major Capital Funding Agreed for SESAME
(Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East)
At a meeting in Amman on 8 March 2012, representatives of four SESAME Members (Iran, Israel, Jordan and Turkey) agreed to make voluntary contributions of US$5 million each towards the construction of SESAME over the four years 2012-15.
Construction of SESAME is progressing well, on a schedule which will allow commissioning with four ‘day-one’ beamlines in 2015. The remaining sum of some $15 million that is still required for procurement is being sought from other SESAME Members (Egypt was preparing to join this initiative, and is still expressing great interest, but this has so far proved difficult due to changes in the government; Pakistan and the Palestinian Authority have offered to provide up to $5 million and $2 million respectively in-kind) and from outside sources, including the EU (which has already contributed $4.5 million), the USA (which has recognised SESAME as ‘an initiative that supports the diplomatic interests of the USA’), and major charitable foundations. The manpower costs will be provided collectively by the SESAME Members.

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