Full speed ahead for production of acceleration systems for FAIR ring accelerator SIS100


In February, a delegation of GSI/FAIR near Darmstadt visited the RI Research Instruments GmbH premises in Bergisch Gladbach to inspect the assembly of the SIS100 acceleration systems, so-called accelerator cavities, the company has been contracted to produce for the international accelerator facility FAIR. From a total of 14 ferrite loaded cavities, six systems have now been assembled, three of which have also been acceptance tested. The 14 cavities will be installed in the FAIR ring accelerator with a circumference of 1,100 meters and located 17 meters below the Earth’s surface. At FAIR, matter that usually only exists in the depth of space will be produced in a lab for research. Scientists from all over the world will be able to gain new insights into the structure of matter and the evolution of the universe from the Big Bang to the present.

The FAIR ring accelerator is supplied by the existing GSI accelerator facilities, which serve as injectors. Since the facility accelerates ions – charged atomic nuclei – of all elements from hydrogen to uranium, the cavities must be particularly variable in producing the acceleration frequencies. They generate a radiofrequency field that can accelerate the ions up to 99% of the speed of light. By manipulating the frequency, the ions in the ring can, for example, be packed into different numbers of bunches – suitable for the experiment to be performed with them after acceleration.

The order for the production of the 14 cavities is executed by RI together with Ampegon Power Electronics AG as subcontractor and has now resulted in a successful technology transfer of the ferrite-loaded cavity. RI will build two such acceleration systems for a heavy ion cancer therapy machine for a first industrial customer in the USA.

RI is convinced by the design and concept of the state-of-the-art accelerator system and is thankful for the trust GSI has shown RI, enabling the company to offer this concept to other industrial customers. (CP)