ULICE is a 4-year project set up by 20 leading European research organisations, including 2 leading European industrial partners (Siemens and IBA), to respond to the need for greater access to hadron-therapy facilities for particle therapy research. Project coordinator is the Italian Research Infrastructure Facility CNAO (Milan). Both existing European Hadron Research Facilities in Heidelberg and Milan are partners and they will provide 691 hours of beam-time (146 users, 58 projects) to external researchers. Future facilities like MedAustron, Etoile and Archade also participate in ULICE, which will result in a strong integrated network.Full exploitation of all different resources, unrestricted spread of information and the improvement ofexisting and upcoming facilities are provided by using grid-based data sharing.
The project is built around 3 pillars with measurable outputs. These outputs will be exploited by the (future) facilities and (partly by) the industrial partners:
- JRA - focus on development of instruments and protocols: new gantry design, improvement of fourdimensional particle beam delivery, adaptive treatment planning, mechanisms for patient selection to the whole European Community and database development for specific tumours which can best be treated using carbon ion.
- Networking - increasing cooperation between facilities and research communities wanting to work with the research infrastructure. Outputs will be (among others): a report on recommendations for strategically optimal locations for future RIs throughout Europe.
- Transnational access: 2-step approach, using a combination of pre-defined (within ULICE) clinical trial programmes to allow researchers to visit the facility, and radiobiological and physics experiments to take place.