Large research facilities are quite popular among researchers of the photon and neutron community. More than 30 000 scientists alone in Europe visit each year these facilities and perform their ex-periments with high scientific quality as documented by several recent Nobel price awards. The role of the research facilities in this context is to offer the scientists the best possible experimental and – increasingly important – IT environment. As this type of research is highly competitive, user identi-fication plays an important role, e.g. for remote access to data and experiments.
A number of Euro-pean projects are active in this field and in order to maximize synergies, about two dozen represen-tatives from the main European facilities have met for the 5th harmonization meeting on 26&27 June at Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin in Berlin.
The first part of the meeting concentrated on the status of Umbrella. This system provides for the first time persistent, unique user identification, which is the basis for further novel IT tools and ser-vices for this community. The prototype of Umbrella has been developed within the EuroFEL FP7 project and is now deployed and further being developed within the PaNdata and CRISP FP7 pro-jects covering practically all European large facilities as partners. Deployment is well on track and the workshop offered ideal opportunities to fine tuning the next steps. The second part of the work-shop concentrated on further projects as the inclusion of novel IT tools like the metadata-management system ICAT. Another important issue was the topic of bridging, i.e. linking federa-tions as e.g. the photon / neutron federation to the academic network eduGAIN. In this context, closer cooperation with the National Research and Education Networks (NRENs) as e.g. SWITCH is highly promising. More information and PDFs of all presentations are available from the conference site.