The Budker Institute of Nuclear Physics (BINP) is one of the major centers of advanced study of nuclear physics in Russia. It is located in the Siberian town Akademgorodok and was founded by Gersh Budker in 1959. Gersh Budker, also named Andrey Mikhailovich Budker, was a Soviet nuclear physicist. He was appointed Corresponding Member of the Siberian branch of the Soviet Academy of Sciences on March 28, 1958, and was made an Academician of the division of nuclear physics on June 26, 1964. He is best known for his invention in 1968 of electron cooling, a method of reducing the emittance of particle beams by thermalisation with a co-propagating electron beam. His portrait decorates the famous Round Table room in the institute. Following his death, the institute was renamed the Budker Institute of Nuclear Physics in his honour. Budker died in Akademgorodok from a heart attack at 59.
The BINP is not actually an institute because has its own production and unique for Russian technologies. Despite its name, the center was not involved either with military atomic science or nuclear reactors – instead, its concentration was on high-energy physics (particularly plasma physics) and particle physics. In 1961 the institute began building the first particle accelerator in the world which collided two beams of particles. The BINP now employs over 3000 people, and hosts several research groups and facilities.
The money that it makes goes to its employees as salaries and for new scientific experiments. The BINP is the only institute in the world that pays for its experiments by itself by selling its inventions to other countries (particle accelerators, vacuum systems, resonators, etc.). Their devices help other countries disinfect medical equipment, grain, food, air and water. In other words, do things which are not of great importance in Russia. It also produces X-ray devices used at airports and medical institutions and a great number of other devices used around the world. However, percentage of orders it receives from Russia is insignificant.
The BINP is making this particle accelerator for Brookhaven National Laboratory (the United States).
Average salary of the BINP employee is not large but many of them consciously refuse raising it because they understand that the more money they will receive, the less money will be left for experiments. Still, the institute can afford sending its workers to long business trips abroad, maintains its own recreation center and do other things that need substantial investments.
A VEPP-3 particle accelerator installation.
This is a VEPP-3 bunker , X-ray fluorescence analysis station.
Besides, the BINP has a free electron laser (FEL), the only laser of its type in Russia. They are making a FEL in Germany right now which is a joint project of France, Germany and the BINP. Its cost exeeds 1 billion Euros.
A free electron laser is a laser that shares the same optical properties as conventional lasers but which uses some very different operating principles to form the beam. FELs use a relativistic electron beam as the lasing medium which moves freely through a magnetic structure, hence the term free electron. The free electron laser has the widest frequency range of any laser type, and can be widely tunable,currently ranging in wavelength from microwaves, through terahertz radiation and infrared, to the visible spectrum, to ultraviolet, to X-rays.