February 18-19 FRIB Science Advisory Committee meeting
The FRIB Science Advisory Committee (SAC) met on February 18-19 to consider the 16 FRIBUO Working Group updates submitted by the February 4th deadline. All but two of the 21 experimental working groups were included in the SAC deliberations, with a few of the working groups submitting joint updates. The theory group was not asked for an update at this time. This great response to the request for updates is very encouraging and demonstrates the user interest in rare isotope science now (on the way to FRIB) and at FRIB in the future.
The purpose of the SAC evaluation was to make recommendations to the FRIB Director on near-term funding priorities for equipment essential for FRIB to meet its scientific goals and that potentially can be developed and used now at existing rare isotope facilities.
On March 1 the SAC submitted a report with their recommendation to the FRIB Director. The report will not be made public, but feedback from the report will be provided to the working groups to help them further develop their plan and proposals for equipment. This feedback should be sent to the working groups by the end of March.
Some general comments from the report are worth sharing. The SAC noted that the initiative updates represented a wide range of science, funding scales, and stages of development. Nevertheless they viewed all as important to the science of FRIB. In some cases they recommended that the FRIB Director's office work with the groups to further develop their ideas. The report also makes some very strong statements about the important role of theory for FRIB, stating "we strongly support a vigorous theory effort". Infrastructure needs such as target making, and the development of new generations of detectors and electronics was noted.
I am very pleased by the huge effort put forth by the community to produce the updates and by the excellent advice we received from the SAC. It is important to keep planning and develop good communication between the project and uses so that FRIB will be successful in its scientific mission.
Members of the FRIB SAC can be found online.