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Workshop on the Use of Neutrons for Research at PIK

May 2017

Peterhof, Russia

In the coming year, the Russian research reactor PIK in Gatchina near St. Petersburg is scheduled to go into operation. The main focus of the workshop “The future of biology and soft matter research on reactor PIK”, which took place in mid-May in Peterhof, Russia, was the development of a scientific user community for neutron research in biology and soft matter. It is planned that suitable instruments for this purpose will be developed at PIK.

The President of the NRC “Kurchatov Institute”, Prof. Mikhail Kovalchuk, and Prof. Sebastian M. Schmidt, member of the Board of Directors at Forschungszentrum Jülich, led the scientific discussions during the workshop. Both were clearly in favour of establishing an international user centre for research with neutrons at PIK. “ The planned commissioning of PIK in the coming year opens up new perspectives for neutron research”, explained Schmidt. “If we are successful in establishing an international user facility in St. Petersburg, that would be a great achievement for Russia, Germany and Europe.”

PIK-Workshop-GroupGroup photograph taken at the workshop in Peterhof, Russia.
Copyright: Petersburg Nuclear Physics Institute

Research with neutrons is a key technology for many areas of science. Magnetic data storage for future computer technology, thermoelectric energy technology for the future of power generation from waste heat, nano-reinforced polymer materials for lightweight cars, biological processes and proteins to improve medicines – all these areas will benefit from knowledge that can only be gained by using neutrons from materials and samples.

The Peterhof workshop was one of the measures included in CREMLIN (Connecting Russian and European Measures for Large-scale Research Infrastructures). The project is aimed at supporting European-Russian cooperation in the planning and scientific use of large-scale research facilities. The Jülich Centre for Neutron Science (JCNS) is coordinating the collaboration with PIK within the framework of the project.

More information:

Press release from the NRC “Kurchatov Institute”