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  • Overview

    The importance of Cyclotron for research in nuclear physics was conceived by Dr. Homi J. Bhabha in 1965 and the K130 machine similar to LBL K130 machine was decided upon. The activity at Kolkata (the then Calcutta) started in 1969 by BARC. The machine was commissioned in 1977 and first beam of alpha particle came out on 16th June, 1977.

    The mandates of the Centre were to carry out research in experimental nuclear physics, radiation damage studies and isotope production for research and nuclear medicine. The centre became a national facility with full-fledged design and development facilities for mechanical engineering, power electronics, RF engineering and computation. To support the experimental nuclear physicist a strong theory group also emerged. To commemorate the significant event of the extraction of the first beam of alpha particle, VECC celebrates 16th June as its Foundation Day. The centre became an independent R&D unit of DAE in May, 1990.

    Over the years the expertise grew in other fields of science like accelerator design and related technology development, cryogenics, detector development and VECC emerged as a hub for international collaboration in High Energy Physics and accelerator technology. VECC has active collaborations with CERN, BNL, FAIR, TRIUMF, RIKEN, GANIL, DUBNA.

    At present VECC has 3 Cyclotrons – K130 Cyclotron operating since 1977, K500 Superconducting Cyclotron which accelerated internal beam in 2009 but diagnosed to have 1st harmonic magnetic field error which is now being corrected so that beams can be made available for experiments, and a 30 MeV H- medical cyclotron which is at the installation stage.

    In order to carry out nuclear physics in the domain of exotic nucleus a Radioactive Ion Beam facility has been built which would act as a part of the more complex accelerator facility under the major upcoming project named Advance National facility for Unstable and Rare Ion Beam (ANURIB). The RIB facility is presently being utilized for study of defect propagation and surface physics of materials.

    The Centre is equipped with the state-of-art High Performance Computing facility and extensive network infrastructure.

    VECC is also a Constituent Institute of Homi Bhabha National Institute (HBNI), a deemed to be University.

    At present the centre operates in three campuses – at Bidhannagar – the main campus, at New Town, Rajarhat – the site for upcoming project and Chakgaria – the site for Medical Cyclotron along with Regional Radiation Medicine Centre which operates in the campus of Saroj Gupta Cancer Centre & Research Institute at Thakurpukur.