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Iran launches first phase of large-scale light source facility project

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
An illustration of the Iranian light source facility that will be built in the city of Qazvin.

Iran has launched the first phase of constructing its first-ever light source facility designed by Iranian experts, in what has been described as the largest technological project in the country’s scientific history.

The national accelerator project was launched during a ceremony on Wednesday, with Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi and Sorena Sattari, vice president for science and technology, in attendance.

Synchrotron first invented by American physicist Luis Walter Alvarez, is a type of particle accelerator in the form of a circular ring that generates electromagnetic radiation.

The synchrotron radiation provides a powerful possibility for studying the molecular structure and changes in the shape and composition of cells during chemical reactions. It is used in various research and applied fields in physics, electronics, medical sciences, radiotherapy, pharmacology, industry, biology, environment, and archeology, among others.

The Iranian light source facility project has been designed as the first large-scale laboratory for nanotechnology research and interdisciplinary studies in Iran and is meant to meet the technical and professional needs of scientists and researchers.

The first stage of the plan involves its general, conceptual and infrastructural design, and the second step will feature the formation of research and development (R&D) units.

Iran’s light source facility includes an electron storage ring with a circumference of 528 meters, in which electrons are stored with an energy of 3 gigaelectron-volts (GeV), current of 400 milliampers (mA) and emission of 0.477 nanometers (nm).

It will be established north of Imam Khomeini International University (IKIU) in the city of Qazvin in an area of 50 hectares, with some facilities already set up there.

Currently, physicists and engineers with different specialties are directly working on the project. Additionally, about 200 scientists, researchers and professors from various universities, scientific centers and industrial companies in Iran and abroad are contributing to the plan.

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