About IXAS

The International X-ray Absorption Society (IXAS) is an international scientific organization representing all those working on the fine structure associated with inner shell excitation (near edge and extended) by various probes (e.g. x-rays and electrons), and related techniques for which the data is interpreted on the same physical basis. The study of the fine structure of the absorption spectra is important for understanding fine details of the atomic and electron structure of matter in any aggregation state. The IXAS is the reference organization for scientists, students and practitioners using various x-ray based experimental techniques (XAS, EXAFS, XAFS, XANES, NEXAFS citing just a few of them) usually conducted at synchrotron radiation facilities. One commonly used acronym, XAFS, stands for X-Ray Absorption Fine-Structure. The purpose of the IXAS is to oversee activities which benefit the community as a whole, to establish operational committees, to provide for education in the field, to disseminate relevant information, to work with other related regional, national and professional organizations in promoting and developing XAS and related disciplines, and to act as representative for the community to other professional organizations. Here the background (history) of the IXAS is briefly described. The current organization is a result of long-standing mostly voluntary efforts by principal researchers in this field.

Though the first experimental observation of x-ray absorption fine structures occurred in the late 1910's the major efforts for understanding and exploitation of the XAS began in the early 1970s, mainly associated with the pioneering work of Sayers, Stern and Lytle in United States. The increasing availability of synchrotron radiation facilities and the possibility of performing XAS experiments as a routine inspired a flurry of experimental and theoretical activity for applying XAS to obtain new information on the properties of materials. During this initial period the rapidly increasing application of XAFS to the study of a large variety of materials of both scientific and practical importance led to the first international gathering of XAFS users in 1981 in England. At this meeting it was decided to form an International Advisory Committee for organizing an XAFS conference series thereafter in two year intervals. Counting the England gathering, eight XAFS conferences were organized in this informal manner till 1994. The conferences were convened in Europe and the United States and were sponsored by Universities and non-profit Research Laboratories. By this time it became clear with the spread of the participation of users of the XAFS technique well beyond Europe and the United States that a more formal organization was required.

At the 1994 XAFS 8 conference the International XAFS Society (IXS) was founded to replace the International Advisory Committee. The IXS was founded as a formal organization with officers, an executive committee, Charter and By-Laws and a world wide international membership from America, Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa. It arranged the subsequent five International XAFS conferences of XAFS 9-13 which convened in the United States, Europe, and Japan. IXS also authorized the upcoming XAFS 14 July 2009 conference. After the 2000 XAFS 11 conference the subsequent conferences began to be scheduled in three year intervals. This change in scheduling was made to be in step with the International Union of Crystallography (IUCr) conferences which are spaced in three year intervals. In 1998 XAS affiliated with the XAFS Subgroup and therefore went to the triennial schedule so as not to compete for attendees by scheduling its conference in the same year as the IUCr triennial conferences. The IUCr is a UN sponsored Union that is a 501k non-profit organization.
In 1998 IXS established two awards to honor senior and young researchers for their contributions to the development of XAFS and its application. These awards were presented at the XAFS conferences of 2000, 2003, and 2006.

In 2007 the executive committee of IXS decided to rename the organization IXAS in view of the fact that the acronym IXS stands usually for Inelastic X-ray Scattering. IXAS has replaced the former IXS in all the previous activities and revised the Charter and Bylaws accordingly (see the IXAS website). The IXAS is a non-profit organization run by volunteers with no salaries. The funds to run IXAS are usually obtained from contributions of sponsors from Universities, National Research Labs, Scientific Foundations and Industries and from fees assessed to Conference attendees.

In 2009 the IXAS is going to take a step forward, starting up some new projects aimed at promotion of the activities gaining more members. In the process of development, the bylaws need updating and creating subsidiary rules may need to be updated. The policy statement is available in this website. Lastly but not least, the IXAS is based on voluntary supports and contributions of individual members. We sincerely hope you to understand our goal and support us.

IXAS Members (Where are they from?)

"Where do the IXAS members come from?" It is a simple question but it is not easy to answer actually. The IXAS members are increasing daily and even the current members are still a part of XAS community. Indeed, the statistics made by member's e-mail address (illustrated in figure) differs much from the statistics of XAFS conference attendants, i.e., there can be fairly large number of researchers not registered yet. Also currently limited regional distribution is to be widened. Relatively narrow band distribution may reflect internet accessibility although membership nationality distributing over 37 countries is amazing.

We hope that researchers from countries without synchrotron radiation can have updated information. It is not hard to expect members of 1, 000 or even more. Within three years, we would like to have at least over 1,000 members. Registration functions are expected to start up in early November that would further increase the members.