A milestone in safety

Over recent days, we’ve achieved some historic milestones in LHC physics as we’ve made the transition from proton to ion running. These have been widely reported and I’ve communicated the news to you by e-mail. Less visible, but nonetheless vital to the functioning of the Lab, is an agreement that we’ll be signing with our Host States on 15 November. It will be the second tripartite agreement to be signed in as many months, and it is set to streamline our radiation protection and radiation safety.


The new agreement replaces existing bilateral agreements governing the procedures applying on the French and Swiss parts of the site. From an operational point of view, the new agreement simplifies matters by harmonising administrative processes while guaranteeing best practice in terms of radiation protection and radiation safety at CERN.

The agreement is the result of many months of detailed discussions with the Autorité de Sûreté Nucleaire in France and the Office Fédéral pour la Santé Publique in Switzerland. It aims at optimizing practices and procedures in matters of radiation protection and radiation safety but also at increased transparency of reporting to France and Switzerland in line with CERN’s commitment to collaborate with the Host States in this area.

Increased transparency implies substantial effort by CERN to keep its rules, practices and documentation in matters of radiation safety and protection up to date for all our installations, old and new. It is, however, a development that is necessary to guarantee the environmental sustainability of CERN’s activities in the long run. I therefore warmly welcome the agreement and offer my sincere thanks to all three parties who worked so constructively to put it in place.

Rolf Heuer