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Hosting Legal Entity
Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Legal Status
Research organisation
Bem tér 18/c, Institute for Nuclear Research, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Debrecen, PO: 4026 (Hungary)
Type Of RI
Coordinating Country
Current Status:
Operational since 2009
Scientific Description
The ATOMKI accelerator center is a research infrastructure complex including the most important accelerators of the institute and also the main research facilities around the accelerators. The accelerators connect each other by a complimentary way concerning the achievable ion and charge choice, the beam intensity and energy. This unique infrastrucure group has been used for decades in a high number of research programmes by the researchers of Atomki and University of Debrecen and also by domestic and foreign researchers, students and PhD students.

RI Keywords
ECR, Accelerators, Particle accelerators, ECRIS, Cyclotron, Van de graaff, VdG, Spectrometers, Neutron source, Radioactive isotopes
RI Category
Micro- and Nanotechnology facilities
Intense Neutron Sources
Nuclear Research Facilities
Scientific Domain
Biological and Medical Sciences
Chemistry and Material Sciences
Physics, Astronomy, Astrophysics and Mathematics
ESFRI Domain
Physical Sciences and Engineering
Irradiation of target materials with of ion beams

The ATOMKI Accelerator Center consisting of 5 accelerators and 4 complex target facilities is able to make ions in various type, energy and charge. These ions are formed into a beam and transported into the target facilities or into the collision chamber or target of the users. The energy range covered by AAC is between 100 eV and 27 MeV.  The service itself at AAC thus the irradiation of target materials with ion beams of specified energy.

Cyclotron neutron source with beryllium target

The facility is operated at the MGC-20E cyclotron of ATOMKI (Debrecen, Hungary) and it is an important element of the portfolio of neutron sources in Hungary. High intensity fast neutrons are emitted by a thick Be-target bombarded by charged particles. Using 18 MeV protons the broad n-spectrum covers the En = 0 - 16 MeV energy range and, for 10 MeV deuterons, the En = 0 - 12.5 MeV energy range. The n-spectrum can be controlled via changing the type and energy of the bombarding beam. Typical intensity within a cone of 10^o half angle around the zero degree direction is 3x10^11 n/s/sr for Ep = 18 MeV protons. Applications: fast neuron activation analysis (FNAA), dosimetry, radiobiology, radiomutation breeding of plants, irradiation tests of insulators and semiconductor based electronics-photonics structures and devices used in high-energy physics and space research and applications. Main partners: University of Debrecen; KFKI-RMKI; CERN: CMS, ALICE, ATLAS; ESA: SSC; EU FP7.

Electron Cyclotron Resonance Ion Source

In the ECR Laboratory of ATOMKI operates the only Hungarian electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) ion source (ECRIS). The ECR ion source is a middle-size facility and, contrary to its name, is a low-energy particle accelerator devoted to produce and deliver plasmas and ion beams in wide range of the elements, charges and energies. Plasma and ion choice: H, He, N, O, Ne, Ar, Kr, Xe (from gases) and Ni, Fe, Zn, C, C60, Zn, Pb (from solids). The energy and charge of the ion beams can be varied upto an upper limit. The highest achieved charge so far has been 27 which is Hungarian record. The beam energy can be changed between 50 eV and 1 MeV, continuously. In the laboratory numerous atomic and plasma physics investigations are being carried out, e.g. plasma diagnostics, X-ray spectroscopy, ion-surface and ion thin layer interactions, the production of new materials. The plasmas and ion beams can cover the surfaces of industrial and medical samples thus their properties can be changed.

ESA-21 electron spectrometer

A unique spectrometer system developed in Atomki, for simultaneous energy and angular distribution measurement of electrons or ions emitted from atomic collisions. With its 13 angular channels, the system covers the whole 0-180 degrees observation angle range with excellent resolution and brightness parameters. It is a combination of a spherical and two consecutive cylindrical electrostatic mirror analysers. It is mounted at one of the beamlines of the VdG-5 accelerator of Atomki. This atomic physics channel is presently equipped by a specific, large (1 m diameter), magnetically perfectly shielded, general purpose atomic physics chamber. With the spectrometer system ESA-21, atomic and molecular jet targets can be investigated, while the 1m universal chamber is applicable for solid targets too. The energy range is 10 eV - 11 keV/q, and the relative resolution is in the 1e-4 - 5e-3 range.

Quasi-monoenergetic fast neutron source

The facility is operated at the MGC-20E cyclotron of ATOMKI (Debrecen, Hungary) and it is an important element of the portfolio of neutron sources in Hungary. Fast neutron source with D2-gas target. Using deuteron bombarding beam quasi-monoenergetic neutrons can be produced in the En = 3 - 12 MeV neutron energy range. The energy and intensity of the emitted neutrons can be controlled via changing the energy and intensity of the deuteron bombarding beam. Some 3 order of magnitude of intensity range can be covered. Additionally, well characterised broad spectrum d+Be neutrons can be produced at the same measuring site. A pneumatic rabbit system is available enabling counting of short-lived radioactive products when the activation technique is used. Applications: Measurement of excitation function of neutron induced nuclear reactions. Calibration of detectors, measurement of response functions. Benchmark tests. Fast neuron activation analysis (FNAA), dosimetry, radiobiology. Main partners: University of Debrecen (Debrecen, Hungary); International Atomic Energy Agency (Vienna, Austria); EU DG JRC Institute of Reference Materials and Measurements (Geel, Belgium).

Time-of-flight electron spectrometer

This Research Infrastructure (RI) is suitable for study of the collision processes of energetic ( > 10 keV ) ions/atoms with free (gaseous) atoms and molecules. Information on the collision processes is obtained by detection of the electrons emitted from the collisions. Accordingly, the central element of RI is an electron spectrometer. This is supplemented by further elements which partly ensure the well-defined charged state of the bombarding ions, and partly make it possible to carry out coincidence measurements between the emitted electrons and the ions scattered in the collisions. Before 2006 the energy and angular distribution of the electrons was measured by an electrostatic spectrometer. The name of RI refers to the presently used spectrometer based on the measurement of the time-of-flight of the electrons. This spectrometer is suitable for the energy analysis of the forward-ejected electrons in the energy range 5 - 50 eV with a relative energy resolution 2 - 5 %.

20 MeV Variable Energy Cyclotron

The basic equipment of the Cyclotron Lab. of ATOMKI (part of the ATOMKI Accelerator Center) is a Russian made MGC-20E isochronous particle accelerator. It can accelerate protons, deuterons, He-3 and He-4 particles up to a max. proton energy of 18 MeV and extracted beam current of 50 microamps. 9-10 experimental stations belong to it equipped with different measuring devices and run by different groups. A B-type isotope lab. is also connected to it, as well as one can use a broad spectrum and also a monoenergetic secondary neutron source. A PET (Positron Emission Tomograph) used in medical practice is also available here.

5MV Van de Graaff Accelerator

The main parameters of the accelerator: Terminal voltage range 1-3,5 MV; Ion mass-energy product 56 MeV x AMU/e2; Energy stability 1 keV; Maximum beam intensity, direct 50 uA; Maximum beam intensity, analyzed 10 uA; Ion source inductively coupled RF source; Ion range H+, D+, He+, C+, N+, O+, Ne+. There are five available beamlines, of which atomic physics, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics experiments are installed as well as the Laboratory of Ion Beam Applications.

Radiocemical Laboratory level B

The separation of radioisotopes from the targets irradiated on the 20 MeV cyclotron of the ATOMKI is carried out in the B level Isotope Laboratory. From these isotopes radiopharmaceuticals are synthesized for human diagnostic ( PET: 11C, 18F, 61Cu, 64Cu, 76Br, 124I; SPECT: 123I, 111In) and therapeutic (103Pd, 131Cs, 165Er, 169Yt, 186Re, 210At) examinations. Radioactive water samples are also analysed in the Laboratory.

Tandetron 4 MeV

Commercial tandetron accelerator (HV-EE), proton energy: 0.2-4.0 MeV. Ion source: duoplasmatron, beamlines: 4 Next upgrade: 2018-2019 (3 ion sources, 9 beamlines)

1MV Van de Graaff Accelerator

The main parameters of the accelerator: Terminal voltage range 50-1500 kV; Energy stability 10 keV; Maximum beam intensity, direct 80 uA; Maximum beam intensity, analyzed 12 uA; Ion source inductively coupled RF source; Ion range H+, He+, C+, N+. There are two available beamlines, a time-of-flight electron spectrometer is installed at the end of one.

Access Type
Access Mode
Excellence Driven
Users Definition
Teams of individual researchers
Type of Users
Academic - 90.0%
Public research organisations - 5.0%
Industry/private companies - 5.0%
European Nuclear Science and Applications Research (ENSAR)
Date of last update: 16/05/2018