Canadian isotope source is to be upgraded

23 May 2000


The new Isotope Separator and Accelerator (ISAC) is now operational at the Canadian TRIUMF laboratory, producing intense beams of short-lived, exotic nuclei. A major component in the laboratory’s programme over the  next five years will be the upgrade of ISAC to ISAC-II, raising the energy from 1.5 to 6.5 MeV/nucleon and extending the mass range, which will enable many more exotic isotopes and nuclear reactions to be studied.

At the laboratory on 18 April for the formal opening of ISAC, Canadian industry minister John Manley announced that the Canadian federal government will give $200 million to TRIUMF over the next five years. The money – $40 million per year over five years – represents a 20% increase from the federal government. As well as allowing TRIUMF to build ISAC-II, the funding will also enable a second phase of the Canadian contribution to CERN’s LHC project, including the provision of the warm twin-aperture quadrupoles for the two beam-cleaning insertions, and the resonant charging power supplies and the pulse-forming networks for the injection kickers.

Further funding for ISAC-II civil construction is expected from the province of British Columbia. The promise of ISAC-II has already repatriated young Canadians back to Canadian universities and brought equipment, previously built in Canada, back into the country from US facilities. It has also attracted experiments from the US and Europe.

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