Prof. Enzo PALMIERI - From Superconducting RF cavities for Particle accelerator to the Industrial Market of Surface Treatments
The Legnaro National Laboratories of the ISTITUTO NAZIONALE DI FISICA NUCLEARE occupy a special place in the international Panorama of the R&D of Superconducting Radiofrequency Cavities for Particle Accelerators.
In the last three decades indeed, we have studied the superconducting thin film technology in the optics of cost reduction. So both with the production of Niobium thin film sputtered Copper Quarter Wave Resonators for the ALPI Heavy Ion accelerator, and with the invention of a new cold-forming technique for the preparation of seamless multicell elliptical cavities for the electron colliders, the LNL-INFN are in a key position for a real technology challenge.
In parallel to this, almost 15 years ago, it was realized that the material science and technology studied for the R&D of Superconducting cavities, could be successfully applied to the need of the national industry for a plethora of market applications: from the automotive to the medical prosthesis, from the jewellery to the photovoltaic, from the fashion to the advanced mechanics, from radiofarmaceuticals to microelectronics. Therefore at University of Padua, a Master in Surface Treatments for industrial applications was born, coorganized by INFN. The Master course aims to combine the metallurgic and surface treatments knowledge with the ability to use new technologies and diagnostics, that are mandatory for industrial processes. It implies a deep activity in laboratory at the Legnaro National Laboratories, in order to get used to different technologies (vacuum, cryogenics, chemical cleaning of surfaces, coatings, superconductivity).
The attempt of technology transfer that results from all that above mentioned, instead than weakening the work on Superconducting Cavities has enpowered the quality of fundamental research.