Procurement at Fusion for Energy (F4E)


Fusion for Energy (F4E) is the European Union’s Joint Undertaking for ITER and the Development of Fusion Energy. The organisation was created under the Euratom Treaty by a decision of the Council of the EU. Its members are the 27 EU Member States, Switzerland and the European Commission.

F4E is responsible for providing Europe’s in-kind and in-cash contribution to ITER, the world’s largest scientific installation that aims to demonstrate fusion as a viable and sustainable source of energy. ITER brings together seven parties that represent half of the world’s population – the EU, Russia, Japan, China, India, South Korea and the United States. The ITER assembly and operations are managed directly by an international organisation created for the purpose: the ITER International Organisation (ITER IO). F4E also supports international fusion research and development initiatives through the Broader Approach (BA) Agreement signed with Japan and in collaboration with the European fusion research community (Eurofusion), with the ultimate goal to reach the commercial exploitation of fusion energy. F4E works closely with industry and R&D organisations across Europe to design, manufacture and test technical components for fusion installations.

For the period of 2008-2020 (covering roughly 60% of the ITER construction activities), F4E has a budget of about 7 billion EUR for the European contribution to the ITER and BA projects. For the period of 2021-2027 F4E foresees a budget of about 6 billion EUR.

F4E is located in Barcelona (Spain) and has offices at the ITER site in Cadarache (France), in Garching (Germany) and Rokkasho (Japan).

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Procurement at Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research (FAIR)

FAIR is the Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research in Europe, one of the largest research projects in the world being built at GSI Hemholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung GmbH in Darmstadt, Germany. Constructor is the Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research in Europe GmbH (FAIR GmbH). Shareholders alongside Germany are Finland, France, India, Poland, Romania, Russia, Sweden, and Slovenia. The United Kingdom is an associate partner; the Czech Republic is an aspirant partner. The project cost is over 2 billion Euro.

In giant planets, stars, and during stellar explosions and collisions, matter is subject to extreme conditions such as very high temper­a­tures, pressures, and densities. FAIR will enable scientists to create such conditions in the laboratory. To do so, they will bombard small samples of matter with particles. These collisions will, for very short periods of time, create cosmic matter at the tiny impact points. The FAIR research is subdivided into the four experiment pillars: NUSTAR, CBM, PANDA, APPA.

FAIR will generate particle beams of a previously unparalleled intensity and quality. The variety of these particles will be unique: ions of all the natural elements in the periodic table, as well as antiprotons, can be accelerated. A key component of FAIR is a ring accelerator with a circumference of 1,100 meters. Connected to this is a complex system of storage rings and experimental stations. The existing GSI accelerators will serve as the first acceleration stage.

The FAIR particle accelerator facility in Darmstadt is one of the world’s biggest and most complex construction projects for international cutting-edge research. On a site of approximately 20 hectares, unique buildings are being constructed in order to house and operate newly developed high-tech research facilities. This multinational and highly complex mega construction project has entailed the development of integrated construction workflow planning that closely coordinates building, civil and construction engineering, accelerator development and construction, and scientific experiments.

The FAIR project is being realised in international collaboration. International scientific and technical institutes of the shareholder countries and many more partner countries are cooperating.

Cutting-edge technologies and extremely innovative measuring methods and techniques are being developed for the unique FAIR particle accelerator facility. In order to create the facilities for acceleration and experiments, high-level scientists, engineers, and other experts are working in international partnership to advance new technological developments in many areas such as information and superconductor technology.

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Procurement at European X-ray Free Electron Laser (European XFEL)

The European XFEL is a research facility of superlatives. It generates ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources. The world's largest X-ray laser is opening up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users in areas of research that were previously inaccessible. Using the X-ray flashes of the European XFEL, scientists will be able to map the atomic details of viruses, decipher the molecular composition of cells, take three-dimensional images of the Nano-world, film chemical reactions, and study processes such as those occurring deep inside planets. At the European XFEL, international research groups can use complex experiment stations to perform their experiments for a few days or weeks. To generate the X-ray flashes, bunches of electrons are first accelerated to high energies and then directed through special arrangements of magnets (undulators). In the process, the particles emit radiation that is increasingly amplified until an extremely short and intense X-ray flash is finally created with properties similar to those of laser light. The European XFEL is located mainly in underground tunnels which can be accessed on three different sites. The 3.4 kilometer long facility runs from the DESY campus in Hamburg to the town of Schenefeld in Schleswig-Holstein. At the research campus in Schenefeld, teams of scientists from all over the world carry out experiments using the X-ray flashes. The company employs more than 300 people. At present, 12 countries are participating in the project: Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. The European XFEL has been realized as a joint effort of many partners. The European XFEL GmbH cooperates closely with the research center DESY and other organizations worldwide. Construction started in early 2009; user operation began in September 2017. To construct and operate the European XFEL, international partners agreed on the foundation of an independent research organization – the European XFEL GmbH, a non-profit limited liability company under German law.

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Procurement at European Spallation Source (ESS)

The European Spallation Source is a multi-disciplinary research facility based on the world’s most powerful neutron source. The facility will enable scientific breakthroughs in research related to e.g. materials, energy, health and environment, in order to address some of the most important societal challenges of our time. It is expected to deliver first science in 2023 and reach its full specifications three years later, with 15 instruments online.

ESS is organised as a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) with 13 member nations, including the host nations Sweden and Denmark. More than 500 employees from 54 nations are collaborating with institutions all over Europe to deliver the facility. The construction of the main facility in Lund, Sweden, started in 2014 with a budget of 1,843 billion EUR. Two years later, the Data Management and Software Centre opened in Copenhagen, Denmark.

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Procurement at European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF)

The European Synchrotron (ESRF) is the world-leading source of synchrotron and a centre of excellence for fundamental and innovation-driven research for imaging and studying the structure of matter at the atomic and nanometric scale in many fields of research, including life sciences, materials science, chemistry and physics. The ESRF owes its success to the international co-operation of 22 partner nations. An on-going upgrade, the ESRF’s Extremely Brilliant Source, ESRF-EBS, (150 MEURO over 2015-2022) has been selected as a Landmark by the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) for the 2016 Roadmap and reiterated in the 2018 Roadmap, recognising the strategic importance of the ESRF’s pioneering new-generation high-energy synchrotron. Centred on rebuilding the ESRF storage ring, with an ambitious instrumentation and data strategy, EBS will deliver from August 2020 unprecedented source brilliance and coherence (~100x), offering scientists and industrial partners a powerful new instrument to look even deeper into the structure of materials and living matter.

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Procurement at European Space Agency (ESA)

ESA is Europe’s comprehensive space agency, active across every area of the space sector; space science, human spaceflight, exploration, earth observation, space transportation, navigation, operations, technology, telecommunications and safety and security from space. ESA promotes a broad competitiveness of European space industries through its industrial policy. ESA also works in close cooperation with the EU and other European organisations as well as space organisations outside Europe. ESA is further increasingly active in stimulating the downstream market that follows from space developments and applications. ESA works with economic operators to carry out projects and activities in all areas mentioned.

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Procurement at European Souther Observatory (ESO)

ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities for astronomy to enable important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research.

ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in the Atacama Desert region of Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. Each year, more than 2000 proposals are submitted for the use of ESO telescopes, requesting between four and six times more observing time than is available. ESO is the most productive astronomical observatory in the world, which annually results in almost 1000 scientific papers based on ESO data.

ESO works with industry to carry out projects and to build instruments and telescopes, including the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), the world’s biggest optical telescope, which is under construction and will become a reality in the next decade. The material budget for the program is around 940 million EUR.

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Procurement at European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

EMBL’s Barcelona site is continuing to expand in size, with new research groups planned and an extension to the Mesoscopic Imaging Facility. At EMBL Hamburg and EMBL-EBI in Hinxton reorganization and/or expansion of the host campuses are planned or underway. Refurbishment of the EMBL sites at Grenoble and Rome is also at discussion phase.

In the coming five years EMBL will invest in light and electron microcopy, computing infrastructure for IT Services (compute, storage, connectivity, data security), beamline detectors and instrumentation.

One of EMBL’s key projects is the 48 million EUR spend for the construction (incl. equipment and infrastructure) of a unique microscopy facility for the life sciences in Heidelberg. The center, set to open in 2021, will welcome visiting scientists from all over the world as well as industry partners. It will make new imaging technologies at EMBL available to foster a better understanding of the molecular basis of life and disease.he firm whose bid complies with the country of origin requirements, the stated technical, financial and delivery requirements, and which offers the lowest price. However, for requirements exceeding 100’000 CHF, an alignment rule may apply which provides an advantage to a bidder if at least 60% of its supplies originate from poorly balanced Member States.

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Procurement at European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN)

Budget 2020-2024

CERN foresees to spend 2,880 MCHF during the period 2020-2024. This is slightly more than CERN’s long-run average annual procurement budget of 500 MCHF, driven primarily by procurement activity for the LHC’s “High Luminosity” upgrade. Changes in the 2020 revision of the European Particle Physics Strategy may influence CERN’s procurement budget and activities. Visit the CERN Procurement Service website for more info.

Market survey / Industrial policy

Forthcoming market surveys and invitations to tender are announced in the CERN Procurement Service website and any interested firm can register to receive the market survey documents upon their publication.

Industrial database

All firms are also encouraged to register on CERN’s supplier database which CERN uses as a key source of information for preparing lists of firms to invite to its price enquiries and market surveys. When registering on the supplier database, firms indicate their domains of expertise by “procurement code”, which allows CERN to match them with relevant opportunities. By registering on the supplier database, firms also create an account on CERN’s e-procurement portal which will be used to send orders if they win business from the Organization.

Procurement portal

Tendering activities – that is, price enquiries, market surveys and invitations to tender – are managed on a separate e-tendering platform. To access procurement documents and reply to price enquiries, market surveys and invitations to tender, firms are asked to register on the e-tendering platform.

Procurement process

As an intergovernmental organisation, CERN has established its own procurement rules which comply with the principles of transparency and impartiality while aiming to achieve a balanced industrial return for all its Member States.

Contracts are awarded following price enquiries or invitations to tender. Price enquiries are made for contracts with an anticipated value below 200’000 CHF, and are only open to a limited number of selected firms. Invitations to tender are made for contracts above 200’000 CHF and are issued to firms qualified and selected based on a preceding open market survey. Where CERN has recurring demand for the same goods or services, it may establish multi-year framework agreements, which are also awarded following price enquiries or invitations to tender. A summary of these procurement procedures is provided here.

Contracts for supplies are awarded to the firm whose bid complies with the country of origin requirements, the stated technical, financial and delivery requirements, and which offers the lowest price. However, for requirements exceeding 100’000 CHF, an alignment rule may apply which provides an advantage to a bidder if at least 60% of its supplies originate from poorly balanced Member States.

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[18 May]

BSBF2021 Procurement Handbook

When getting started as a supplier to the Big Science market a number of steps can be taken to initiate contact with Big Science organisations, monitor calls for tenders and establish collaborative platforms for bidding. The BSBF2021 Procurement Handbook provides an easy-to-read introduction to Big Science Organisations and their procurement procedures. In this document, each head of procurement from the 11 co-organising Big Science Organisations (CERN, EMBL, ESA, ESO, ESRF, ESS, European XFEL, FAIR, ILL, F4E, SKAO), presents their procurement figures for the following years, different aspects like procurement rules and regulations, technical and financial requirements, etc.

You can download the BSBF2021 Procurement Handbook here.

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