A new research complex equipped with a powerful pulsed ion accelerator INURA (Innovative Nazarbayev University’s Research Accelerator) has been launched at Nazarbayev University (Astana, Kazakhstan). It was designed and created in collaboration with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (USA) and Tomsk Polytechnic University. Numerous groundbreaking engineering solutions of TPU scientists were used to create the accelerator. At the facility, it is possible to obtain new scientific results in physics of ion beams and plasma and to develop promising technologies for industry. It comes to the development of advanced materials, nanopowders and biotechnology.
Scientists from the TPU Laboratory for Pulse-Beam, Electric Discharge and Plasma Technologies led by Prof Gennady Remnev were engaged in the design of the accelerator.
TPU research fellow Mikhail Zhuravlev, one of the designers of the accelerator, says:
‘Firstly, there are only a few ion accelerators in the world, therefore, it is already unique. There are more often, for example, linear accelerators. Secondly, INURA is a powerful ion accelerator with a very flexible system of output parameters. The current of an ion beam consisting of protons and ions of carbon can reach 10,000 amperes per 100 nanoseconds. In this case, the power density at the target is 0.15 GW / cm2. It turns out that at a small size of the facility it is possible to create large capacities at a local surface area. This allows us affecting the structure of the surface layer of the material thereby changing its properties in the right direction.’
A crucial feature of INURA is the flexibility of the accelerator.
‘The fact is that the previous accelerators have strictly stated parameters that could be changed in a relatively small range. TPU scientists proposed solutions which allowed the design of the accelerator with adjustable parameters in a wide range. For example, the accelerator can generate a sequence of two bipolar high-voltage pulses with a pause between them in a range of from 0.2 to 2 microseconds. It is also possible to change the amplitude and energy of these pulses, and in addition to the two-pulse mode, the accelerator is able to operate in the single-pulse mode. All these significantly expand the capabilities of researchers,’ explains Mikhail Zhuravlev.
According to the press service of Nazarbayev University, ‘despite the recent launch of the INURA accelerator, many research teams from Nazarbaev University, as well as Kazakhstan and foreign research centers are interested in joint research’.
Currently, various modifications of accelerators created by TPU scientists and based on TPU technologies operate at different universities and enterprises in Russia, China, Kazakhstan, and Iran.