In recent years, the rate of technological development and the associated advance of equipment have rapidly increased in all scientific fields, including scientific imaging. As a result, the technology and equipment used in scientific imaging have become increasingly technical and complicated, while at the same time being more accessible to scientists, engineers and general users. A consequence of these two factors is the rising difficulty in keeping abreast of developments in one’s own area of expertise and in maintaining a functional understanding and awareness of related technology areas. The need for the Scientific Imaging Association of South Africa (SIASA) was identified as a result of the rapid technological growth.
Initially focussing on high-speed imaging, SIASA’s scope was soon broadened to include more scientific imaging disciplines after the potential benefits of such an organisation became evident. The main purpose of SIASA is to foster, within the South African scientific imaging field as described in SIASA – Imaging Disciplines (summarised below), the development of the community in this field. The objectives of SIASA are directed towards providing a networking platform for multidisciplinary practitioners to facilitate resource and knowledge sharing as well as professional development by means of partnership development, group meetings and regular seminars. In such a way, a community where highly technical skills, techniques and hard won “tips” and “tricks” are shared and disseminated, will be promoted. A better appreciation and understanding of complimentary and associated imaging disciplines and techniques can be developed and the rapid growth of young engineers and scientists using this technology will be stimulated.
All individuals, work groups and institutions focussing on scientific imaging, as well as all those using any form of scientific imaging as a tool in order to acquire data for their work, are invited to join. SIASA will provide a specialised niche function, focussed on the tools used in investigative studies, complimentary to the capabilities provided by other local organisations in this field. Where other organisations typically focus on outcomes and results in the field of study, SIASA’s focus is more on the “Materials and Methods” aspects by emphasizing skills development in optimal experimental design, techniques, setup, execution and equipment usage. The efforts of SIASA will assist in capacitating the scientist and engineer in gathering the required data in its best and most reliable form in order to facilitate the understanding and study of the phenomenon of interest.
Interested parties are welcomed and encouraged to register their details in an expression of interest via email, or preferably via the website. This is not a binding commitment – there are no registration or annual fees, and no obligations placed on parties expressing interest. The registration is simply to record details for future correspondence, gather data on fields of interest, and determine the interest in the Association.
Scientific Imaging Association of South Africa
Contact people for questions:
Paul Retief – firstname.lastname@example.org David
Reinecke – email@example.com
SIASA – Imaging Disciplines
The term Scientific Imaging Association is very wide and encompassing. An initial list of major disciplines is given below, where each discipline may in time develop its own sub- disciplines. The below list is thus not prescriptive, but rather a guideline of disciplines. It is necessary that from within the South African scientific community, leaders emerge to shape and guide a discipline or cluster of disciplines. Therefore the Association would encourage interest from people who are experts in their fields to express interest.
Scientific Imaging, as supported by SIASA, can be described as the process of obtaining images within a scientific discipline for the purpose of data analysis by making use of e.g. photonic, acoustic, electron or computational energy during the utilization of scientific instruments and techniques. The ever evolving scientific imaging field encompass, amongst others, the disciplines shown in the following list:
- Motion Analysis
- Digital Volume Correlation
- Digital Image Correlation
- Thermal/Infrared (IR)
Synthetic Aperture Radar
- Geospatial Information System (GIS)
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
- Differential Interference Contrast (DIC)
- 3D Scanning
- Computed Tomography (CT)
- Machine Vision
- Electron microscopy (EM)