The iThemba Laboratory for Accelerator Based Sciences is the continent’s largest facility for particle and nuclear research as well as one of only a handful of facilities in the world producing radionuclides for commercial, research and medical applications. In addition, its facilities include a full radiotherapy clinic for the treatment of certain cancers using both proton and neutron therapy.
The SAAO is a national facility of the NRF and the national centre for optical and infrared astronomy in South Africa. Its primary function is to conduct fundamental research in astronomy and astrophysics. SAAO oversees SALT, located at its site near Sutherland, on behalf of an international consortium and promotes astronomy and astrophysics in Southern Africa.
SAEON is a business unit of the NRF and serves as a national platform for detecting, translating and predicting environmental change through scientifically designed observation systems and research. SAEON also captures and makes long-term datasets freely accessible, and runs an education outreach programme. SAEON has six nodes dispersed geographically across the country.
A national facility of the NRF, SAIAB is famous for its association with the discovery of the enigmatic coelacanth and is internationally recognised for ichthyological research, dynamic research staff and active postgraduate school. SAIAB provides unique skills and infrastructure support in marine, estuarine and freshwater ecosystems research, molecular research, collections and bioinformatics.
The South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO) is a national facility of the NRF and incorporates radio astronomy instruments and programmes such as MeerKAT and KAT-7 telescopes in the Karoo, the Hartebeesthoek Radio Astronomy Observatory (HartRAO) in Gauteng, the African Very Long Baseline Interferometry (AVN) programme in nine African countries as well as the associated human capital development and commercialisation endeavours. The Square Kilometre Project in South Africa (SKA SA) is managed by SARAO and is an international effort to build the world’s largest radio telescope.