The participants of RadioNet FP7 bring together a wide range of relevant expertise in the field of radio astronomy. The consortium includes 26 organisations, including all of the major radio observatories in Europe. In addition, institutes with state-of-the-art knowledge in advanced electronics are also valued partners in the programme. Large international organisations and associations such as ESO and NRAO also play a fundamental role. The competence of the participants spans the areas of (i) fundamental astrophysical research, (ii) operations of large-scale radio telescope facilities, (iii) scientific support, (iv) innovative technology development for astronomical instrumentation and (v) public outreach, teaching and higher education. This distributed knowledge base reflects the diverse set of activities within RadioNetFP7.

The consortium has significant experience in managing large projects, including large EC projects. The consortium is based on the previous RadioNet FP6 partnership: the long standing collaboration and trust that exists between the participants, leads naturally to good communication and an easy exchange of information. Each of the work packages is led by a particular institute and individual, chosen by the consortium on the basis of their expertise and knowledge. Some of the activities build on initiatives funded under FP6, in particular the Transnational Access programme. In this area, the experience of the consortium in operating and making available high quality data products to the international astronomical community is considerable. The consortium operates the largest and the best radio telescopes on the planet - collaboration between telescopes is especially close in the area of European and Global VLBI. The consortium also boasts significant expertise in the area of fundamental research and education. Partners include some of the largest Universities and research institutes in Europe. They address problems in fundamental astrophysics and enjoy an international reputation in the development of advanced and innovative technology (for radio astronomy). The members of this consortium account for a large fraction of all publications (both scientific and technical) associated with the field of radio astronomy.

In summary, the RadioNet FP7 consortium is constituted by internationally leading institutes with complimentary and overlapping expertise. This broad expertise is spread both within and across the partners. The consortium is mature and reliable, but also flexible in terms of embracing new partners and ideas. The result is that this consortium can fully deliver on the entire range of different activities and associated deliverables.

The objectives of the Joint Research Activities (JRA) are mostly to produce prototypes of highly specialised equipment (or software) for forefront astronomical research. Although there is no direct role for industrial partners within RadioNet, many of the participants are closely connected to industrial partners (e.g. TU Delft) or have commercial business units (e.g. The Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Solid-State Physics). Industrial interest in the R&D research associated with the JRAs is likely to be high. APRICOT (see WP8) will purchase MMICS from the fully commercial OMMIC Company in France, and the non-profit Fraunhofer Institute. The aim is to conduct a thorough evaluation of low-noise multifunction MMIC capability available within Europe. This should have immediate spin-offs in the specialised European communications sector e.g. ground-space communications. It is expected that all the JRA partners will also make use of local SMEs for the manufacture of specialised passive components. The UniBoard project also presents the possibility of collaboration with commercial parties - the board's general application makes it at an attractive system for non-science application domains. ASTRON already has experience in this area, making the LOFAR processor boards available to local commercial entities. To make the UniBoard more accessible for the commercial domain, a product leaflet will be published. Care will be taken to ensure that "popular" connectors and interfaces are available - a problem encountered with earlier initiatives in this area. The potential for industrial involvement via production manufacturing is high, provided the JRAs lead to successful prototypes. ALMA is a good example of where this approach can work well (e.g. production of water radiometers etc). Industrial interest in next generation telescopes such as the SKA is assured, partly due to the large number of receptors in the array, and the challenges associated with power consumption, data transport and processing.

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