First magnet in collider’s tunnel

Media, 29 December 2021

On 28 December, the first superconducting magnet was installed in the tunnel of the collider of the NICA accelerator complex. Moreover, a testing system of the MPD solenoid was launched. The festive event took place with the participation of the Institute’s Directorate, heads of the JINR scientific laboratories, and representatives of the organisations involved in the construction of the collider.

The significant event started in the tunnel of the future NICA collider. The tunnel is completely ready for the installation of cryomagnetic modules. JINR Director Grigory Trubnikov, Scientific Leader of the Institute Victor Matveev, JINR Vice-Director Vladimir Kekelidze, and Scientific Leader of the Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions Yuri Oganessian symbolically installed the first out of 80 such dipole magnets. It is planned to complete the installation of all the superconducting magnets in the collider’s tunnel in a year and then to start cryogenic tests.

Young scientists participating in the implementation of the project told the audience about the unique magnets, their construction, and the production technology developed in Dubna. There is a factory created at JINR to produce superconducting magnets not only for the NICA project but also for its scientific sister – the German project FAIR. The next purchasers of Dubna magnets will be China and CERN.

Then, in the MPD Hall, after a speech on the detector’s design, peculiarities of its production, and future physical tasks, the testing system of the MPD solenoid was put into operation: the voltage was applied to the control system, the solenoid vacuum pumping system was launched, the pumps started. Thus, testing of the solenoid before its further assembly began.

“Today’s event is the result of efforts of all the Institute’s laboratories and its partners. The installation of the first magnet would not happen without them, the MPD pavilion would not be ready, and the solenoid would not be put into operation,” JINR Director Grigory Trubnikov noted. Academician Grigory Trubnikov expressed gratitude to colleagues for their work and noted the contribution of each laboratory. Thus, FLNR has developed the beam diagnostics system. LRB has worked on the radiation protection system. LIT is engaged in data science and data analysis. DLNP develops electromagnetic calorimeters and detector systems. FLNP staff members are responsible for numerous engineering systems. For example, superconducting systems. There would not be project tasks without BLTP as the idea of the project was born at this Laboratory. The JINR University Centre trains personnel for the megascience project. “The VBLHEP team has taken on a great responsibility and bears it with dignity and honour,” the JINR Director said highlighting a special role of the Laboratory in the project.

JINR Vice-Director Vladimir Kekelidze congratulated participants of the projects on the significant event and noted that it became a beautiful conclusion of the Year of Science and Technology in the Russian Federation. Scientific Leader of the Institute Victor Matveev also highlighted that such big scientific results can be achieved thanks to close-knit, creative teams.

VBLHEP Deputy Director for Science Andrey Butenko noted that five years had passed since the laying of the first stone in the foundation of the collider until the installation of the first magnet. “We are going to assemble the full ring of the collider out of these magnets over the next year and then start cryomagnetic testing of arches and the main parts of the ring,” he shared the plans of the project.

The installation of the first element of the collider, i.e. a superconducting magnet, and the launch of tests of the large superconducting solenoid of the MPD have marked the beginning of the NICA collider assembly and preparations for the first run at extracted beams. Thus, the Joint Institute concluded preparations for the launch of the second cascade of the NICA accelerator complex.

It should be reminded that in November 2020, Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Mikhail Mishustin put into operation the first cascade of the NICA complex, namely the Booster of the collider.