Today, we continue our conversation with Professor Oleg Tolbanov, Doctor of Physics and Mathematics, Director of the TSU Center for Research and Development "Advanced Technologies in Microelectronics"
- Is there any other area of application for such detectors, besides X-ray studies?
- Our detectors have been operating at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN since 2017. What is the essence of this high-tech installation? Protons with crazy energy of 8 TeV collide in it. Protons are not elementary particles, they consist of quarks. Therefore, in a collision, about 200 secondary short-lived particles occur, which create quite a bit of noise. Among all this noise it is necessary to fix the presence of the " God particle" - the Higgs boson.
Now a new, linear collider is being built, in which elementary particles - an electron and a positron - will collide. By reducing the noise level by several orders of magnitude, it will be possible to obtain the Higgs boson in its pure form and to study its properties much more efficiently. Our detectors will help you “ to see the God particle”.. it is also important that the detectors can work in a high level of radiation arising from the collision of elementary particles of high intensity.
Another important problem that physics is solving today is the impossibility of fixing a significant part of the matter that surrounds us. The fact is that more and more experimental results appear that do not fit into the context of the supersymmetry theory. In particular, it cannot explain the concepts of dark matter and dark energy, which make up to 96% of the Universe. In other words, we observe only 4% of matter, the rest is still beyond the scope of human understanding and even imagination. This is a perspective for the use of our detectors.
- What needs to happen for your detectors to enter production and become part of modern X-ray equipment?
- We need a team of like-minded people who will trust me as a leader and who will be ready and able to sell this product. We need to organize production, and I know how to do it. Investments of 2.5 billion rubles and vocational training of 60 people are needed. I am ready to carry out field supervision and provide specialists from my laboratory for organizing production processes. At the same time, I guarantee that the finished product will be cheaper than foreign counterparts, and the quality will be higher. For a number of reasons, such cooperation has not yet been built with state corporations. But if there is a private investor, then everything can work out.
Although, at this point, we are to face another fundamental problem: in Russia, there is no market for high technology products and, in general, there is no market as such. Most of our enterprises are supported by government orders, without which they would not be viable. Directors and business owners very often do not understand how to market their products.
Russian scientists, in turn, often see the end of their work in the publication of a scientific article. In fact, in modern conditions, this is insufficient. Half a century ago, the life cycle of technologies was about 75 years. Today this cycle has been reduced to 7-8 years. In these conditions, it is necessary to change consciousness and understand the importance of the rapid conversion of new knowledge into technology. The usual scheme “money turns into new knowledge” should be replaced by the scheme “new knowledge turns into money”. The purpose of scientific activity should be the creation of a product (prototype) and its commercialization. And the traditions of the latter were interrupted a hundred years ago. I know how to create a product, but to do that I had to reformat my own consciousness 15-20 years ago, and this was extremely difficult work.
Our HR (High Resistivity) technology is a brand of Tomsk State University, which is known to specialists all over the world. They know it at CERN, Stanford, the Rutherford Laboratory, and so on. But it is not enough just to create technology. You need to maintain success, to prove your worth today, tomorrow, and always. Only then can you be proud of your science, country, and your own achievements.