EST Canarian Foundation
Throughout the preparatory phase of the EST, significant efforts were devoted to establishing a project office with extensive design expertise to ensure the incorporation of the latest technologies, to advance the preliminary design of the EST and to optimise the telescope construction process. The intermediate phase serves as a bridge between the preparatory phase and the construction phase. This paves the way for initiating recruitment for construction activities as soon as funding for the EST construction phase is solidified. To facilitate this intermediate phase, an appropriate legal entity has been created: the European Solar Telescope Canarian Foundation (EST-CF).
On the 25th of July 2023, nine institutions from seven European countries gathered in Santa Cruz de Tenerife to formally execute the documents necessary for the establishment of the EST-CF. This entity bestows legal status upon the project consortium and lays the Foundation for the development and construction phase.
Although nine research institutions have spearheaded the creation of the Foundation, other institutions will have the opportunity to join at a later stage. For example, the University of Graz joined the Foundation in December 2023. Additionally, the EST Canarian Foundation empowers participating institutions with decision-making authority concerning future scientific, technological, and industrial aspects of the project.
The creation of the EST Foundation represents a key milestone in the project's progression towards subsequent stages, including the formation of a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC). This European Solar Telescope ERIC will bring together the national ministries of the partner countries and will act as the legal entity responsible for overseeing all of the construction and operation’s facets of this significant research infrastructure.