Jordan inaugurates international research centre

Jordan's King Abdullah on Tuesday (May 16th) formally launched an international research centre whose members include experts from around the world, AFP reported.

The International Centre for Synchrotron-Light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East, known by the acronym SESAME, "is the first research centre of its kind in the region", said the royal court.

SESAME council president Chris Llewellyn Smith said the centre, in Balqa province north-west of Amman, was "the fulfilment of many hopes and dreams".

"The opening is an occasion to look forward to the science that SESAME will produce, using photons provided by what will soon be the world's first accelerator powered solely by renewable energy," Smith said.

SESAME was set up on the model of the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, Europe's top physics laboratory, and construction work on the $100 million centre started in 2003. It was developed under the auspices of UNESCO and officially came into existence in April 2004.

Jordan was chosen from among five countries for the project, which was funded mostly by the member countries and the EU.

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