Canadian Light Source begins major upgrade

New linear accelerator will ensure continued world-leading discovery and innovation.

The Canadian Light Source at the University of Saskatchewan has begun a two-year project to replace its linear accelerator (LINAC), the device that speeds up electrons to produce a beam of light researchers use to study materials at a molecular or cellular level. This critical upgrade will ensure CLS continues to deliver high-quality, stable and reliable light to the over 1,000 scientists from across Canada and around the world who rely on the CLS for their innovative health, agriculture, the environment and advanced materials research. 

“We’re very grateful for the continued investment by the Canada Foundation for Innovation and our other funding partners,” said Bill Matiko, CLS COO. “This upgrade will boost our ability to deliver a quality beam for our users and clients.”

The new state-of-the-art linear accelerator will replace remaining infrastructure from the SK Accelerator Laboratory and the early days of the CLS, and will enhance the facility’s capabilities by replacing the existing electron source, the radio frequency (RF) LINAC, and the energy compression cavity. 

“This is a very exciting project for the CLS,” says Mark Boland, CLS Machine Director. “It will substantially improve reliability and will keep our facility competitive with the world’s best synchrotrons for the next decade and beyond.”

After a transparent and competitive procurement process, the contract to design, manufacture, and install the new components has been awarded to Research Instruments (RI), a German company that develops and manufactures high-performance components and systems, and provides solutions for scientific and industrial applications to customers around the globe.

The new equipment is expected to be delivered by the end of 2023, and in 2024 the CLS will begin a six-month long shutdown in order to remove the old LINAC, its electron source and associated operating systems, as well as connect the control, mechanical and electrical systems with the new equipment, and install the system, under the direction and supervision of the vendor.

“Our priority is to complete this project as efficiently as possible to ensure minimal impact on our users’ research programs. We will make sure the CLS continues to be a vital component of Canada’s science landscape well into the future,” said Matiko.   

For more information, contact:

Greg Basky
Communications Coordinator
Canadian Light Source Inc.

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