President of Russia initiates technological run of NICA Collider

Media, 13 June 2024

On 13 June 2024, President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin initiated the technological launch of a megascience facility in Dubna, Moscow Region, the superconducting collider of the NICA Accelerator Complex (Nuclotron-based Ion Collider fAcility). This crucial stage in the implementation of the NICA Megascience Project marks the beginning of preparations for the physics run of the complex, scheduled for late 2024 – early 2025. Testing is now underway of the power supplies of the collider’s superconducting magnets and the superconducting magnet of the first experimental facility of the complex, MPD (Multi-Purpose Detector). The start of the technological run of the superconducting solenoid, the main unit of the MPD Facility, and the collider brings preparations for the launch of the entire NICA Complex to the finishing line.

During his visit to Dubna, Vladimir Putin toured the NICA Accelerator Complex, accompanied by JINR Director, Academician Grigory Trubnikov. The President was introduced to the technological features of the assembly of the heavy ion collider ring of NICA. After visiting the MPD Experimental Facility, Vladimir Putin gave the command to supply a test current to the magnetic system of the NICA Complex, thus initiating the technological launch of the collider.

At the MPD Experimental Hall, Vladimir Putin held a meeting with leading scientists from Russia and other countries and winners of megagrants for scientific research.

“The NICA Project we are discussing and working on is directly connected to understanding the origins and evolution of the Universe. At first glance, it may seem that there is currently no practical implementation for this knowledge; it does not appear to be an applied field of research. Nevertheless, alongside the main project, work is underway in microelectronics, biology, and a number of other fields. This is already yielding tangible results for the Russian economy and Russian applied science, particularly in fields essential in terms of human welfare, including medicine,” the President of the Russian Federation stressed.

The NICA Heavy Ion Collider is one of the flagship megascience projects being implemented in Russia. Scientists from 30 countries of the world, as well as the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), are involved in the creation of the complex. The NICA Project unites more than 130 scientific institutes, universities, and enterprises, 36 of which represent the Russian Federation. The collaboration includes 2,400 specialists. 1,650 of them are Russian.

“I am sure this will benefit our international participants currently working in Russia, too, and that the results will be advantageous for their home countries. We are more than willing to share. We are open to working together and benefiting from the progress made through your work and welcome the use of its results not only in Russia, but also in other countries,” Vladimir Putin said.

During the meeting of the President of Russia Vladimir Putin with megagrant winners and leading scientists, JINR Director, Academician Grigory Trubnikov noted that thanks to the megagrant programme, 186 foreign scientists worked in Russia, and almost 1.5 thousand dissertations were defended, with more than 10 thousand scientific papers published.

“This is a unique programme, which has been ongiong for more than 10 years. During this time, 345 laboratories have been established in 150 organizations, 35 countries have joined the programme, and 186 scientists representing foreign laboratories have successfully conducted research here in the Russian Federation,” said Grigory Trubnikov.

Currently, all 206 superconducting magnets of the collider’s ring arcs are installed at the NICA Complex. Its main systems are being set up and tested. The power sources of the collider’s magnet cryostat system, eight resonators of the RF-2 High-Frequency Accelerating System, two stations of the RF-1 System, a beam vacuum chamber in the arcs, the superconducting magnet of the MPD. All these systems are already installed in the collider’s tunnel.

By the end of 2024, it is planned to complete the construction of the accelerator complex, including ion beam transportation channels and the collider. This December is scheduled to mark the start of technological tests of the collider with the transition of its magnets to the superconducting state, testing of the cryogenic system and the cryogenic pipelines, the magnet cryostat system, power supplies, thermometry systems, protection against SCT (superconducting transitions) and energy evacuation, the vacuum system, the automated control system, and the system for forming magnetic field cycles.


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