Russia Will Collaborate With US on the SSC

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Publication date: 
8 January 1993
Number: 
3

On January 6, the Department of Energy and the Russian Federation
Ministry of Atomic Energy signed an agreement to collaborate on the
Superconducting Super Collider.  According to Secretary of Energy
Admiral James Watkins, the Russians will help with the "design,
engineering and production of two of the project's booster
accelerators." 

Under the agreement, six Russian labs have signed
laboratory-to-laboratory pacts with the SSC Lab in Waxahachie,
Texas.  The Budker Institute for Nuclear Physics in Novosibirsk
will design, engineer and build conventional magnets for the SSC's
Low Energy Booster.  The Radiotechnical Institute in Moscow will
build quadrupole, or focusing, magnets for the Medium Energy
Booster.  A DOE press release on the collaboration says that "these
agreements represent a potential total savings to the US of more
than $100 million as an offset to the project's baseline cost." 

Other Russian labs will collaborate with the SSC Lab on
experimental detectors, including the Institute for High Energy
Physics in Protvino, the Petersburg Nuclear Physics Institute, the
Joint Institute of Nuclear Research in Dubna, and the Institute of
Theoretical and Experimental Physics in Moscow. 

To pacify critics of the $8.3 billion megaproject, DOE has promised
that a significant fraction of SSC funding will come from foreign
sources.  Both India and China have already joined collaborations.
India is working on the design and fabrication of beam-line
transfer magnets, correction magnets and radio-frequency equipment.
The Institute for High Energy Physics in Beijing has agreed to
build the cavity-coupled Linac, part of the SSC's linear
accelerator.  While DOE has been actively wooing Japan for several
years, no agreements have yet been announced.

The SSC went through some troubled times this summer when, to prove
its budget-cutting ability, the House voted 232-181 to terminate
it.  However, the Senate and House-Senate conferees both approved
the project, and the House finally agreed to fiscal year 1993
funding of $517 million. 

What is in store for the SSC for fiscal 1994 is not clear.  While
President-elect Clinton has said he supports the collider, Vice
President-elect Gore voted against it in the fiscal 1992 budget
(Gore did not vote on it this year.) 

It will probably be mid-March until the Clinton Administration
provides the details of its plans for the SSC in its fiscal 1994
budget submission to Congress. While the White House is supposed to
submit a budget in February, Clinton is expected to ask for an
extension. 

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