Russian fuel company TVEL (part of state nuclear corporation Rosatom) said on 13 April that its Central Design and Technological Institute (TISC) had concluded a government contract to design a scientific centre based on a new latest generation synchrotron.

The Siberian Circular Photon Source (SKIF) will be built at the science city of Koltsovo in the Novosibirsk region of Siberia.

In March, the Russian government appointed TVEL as the general designer of SKIF. The establishment of the SKIF centre is part of the national project “Science” under the auspices of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education. It is being developed by the GK Boreskova Institute of Catalysis of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

The synchrotron and associated infrastructure are planned to be in place before the end of 2023. Commissioning of the facility scheduled is scheduled for 2024. The new centre will conduct innovative research in the fields of physics, chemistry, geology, biology and medicine.

TVEL has overall responsibility for developing the design documentation.  TISC will prepare documentation for engineering surveys, design estimates and cost estimates for verification by various state bodies.
One of the residents of the SKIF centre will be the State Research Centre for Virology and Biotechnology (Vector Centre), which is developing and testing a vaccine against the new coronavirus. The Vector Centre will be able to conduct a series of biological studies as early as 2024 – at two of the six experimental stations which will comprise of the first stage of the SKIF centre. In 2025, a specialised vector station is expected to open up.