The National University of Córdoba (Universidad Nacional de Córdoba) in Argentina is fully funded by the National System of Microscopy, an initiative of the Ministry of Science Technology and Productive Innovation.
The Laboratory of Microscopy and X-ray Microanalysis - LAMARX is now equipped with a JEOL EPMA SUPERPROBE JXA-8230. The laboratory missions are 1) to provide concrete solutions to problems affecting productive sector (private or public) and 2) to promote the exchange of scientific knowledge between private and public sectors.
The number of applications is enormous, ranging from nondestructive analysis of metallic and non-metallic materials to microfossils and analytic software development. Two major groups are involved in this program, the Atomics and Spectroscopy group and the Material Sciences group, composed by physicists, chemists, geologists, biologists, dentists, archeologists, metallurgists, etc. This is really an exciting environment where investigators, with distinct necessities, will find logistics and intellectual support.
The city of Córdoba is located almost in the center of Argentina. The city is established at the base of a chain of mountains called Sierras Chicas. This chain of mountains separates the Pampas (east), and the Chaco area going towards the Andes. The Córdoba airport offers a great view of Sierras Chicas. Córdoba has a population of approximately 1.3 million residents and is a modern city with precious historical architectural constructions. For instance, the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba (UNC) is the oldest university in Argentina, founded in 1613! The rich history turned this institution into an important cultural, scientific and political reference for Latin America and the world. Besides being the first University in the country, UNC created the first astronomical observatory in 1871.
A visit to Argentina and Cordoba will expose the visitor to respectable beef (“asado”) and outstanding wine, these are two major export products. One will notice the influence of European culinary right away, especially from Spain, France and Italy. Am I in Europe? My major unsolicited advice for visitors is: Control your hunger, because the locals have very, very late evening meals. Some restaurants will open only after 8 PM. Carrying extra dry food, chocolate and candies might help the newcomer during the period of adjustment by keeping the sense of humor under acceptable levels until you finally get dinner by 9:00 PM ;-). This is the bad news, the good news it that the food in Argentina is worth waiting for.