Final contracts signed for IMPRESS partners
In a short ceremony at ESTEC recently, Daniel Sacotte, ESA's Director of Human Spaceflight, Microgravity and Exploration, signed the accession contracts for all 40 academic and industrial partners in the IMPRESS Project, thereby completing an important milestone for the pan-European venture.
The five year Intermetallic Materials Processing in Relation to Earth and Space Solidification (IMPRESS) Project will investigate the materials processing, structure and properties of new higher-performance intermetallic alloys for industrial applications, such as turbine blades and catalytic powders. The project is a joint endeavour between the European Commission and ESA within the European Union Sixth Framework Programme.
The signing of the accession contracts marks the final stage in the launch of the €41 million project, which brings together the academic and industrial expertise of 40 research groups from 15 countries, across the enlarged European Union and Russia.
“We are extremely pleased that the contractual aspects of IMPRESS are concluded,” said Sacotte. “We can now put all our efforts into delivering the world-class results that this project promises.”
Although work on the project formally started on 1 November 2004, David Jarvis, ESA's IMPRESS Integrated Project Coordinator, emphasised the importance of this milestone to the 160 scientists and industrial engineers who are involved; “IMPRESS is a project which embodies the vision of European integration. It is the first time in Europe that such a team has been assembled in material science, and together we are eager to make the project a success for industry.”
The IMPRESS Project, under the coordination of ESA, was selected under Priority 3 of the EU Sixth Framework Programme: Nanotechnologies and nanosciences, knowledge-based multifunctional materials, new production processes and devices (NMP).