|Russian Science and the World|
(WWW Monthly Digest)
NOVOSIBIRSK, May 08, 2001 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Scientists of the Theoretical and Applied Mechanics Institute of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences have designed a new model of windmill-electric generating plant. The traditional blades were replaced in it by rotating cylinders, which allows the plant to generate on the average 100 per cent more electricity than produced by conventional units. Moreover, the latter need quite a strong wind, while the Siberian plant needs but a whiff of wind with a velocity of only 1-2 metres a second, inventor of the plant Nikolai Bychkov told Itar-Tass.
He expects the plant to find broad application primarily in distant villages, towards which it is economically senseless to extend expensive electric transmission lines. It is planned to manufacture these world's most effective windmill-electric generating plants at the Polyot Aerospace Association in Omsk.
© 1996-2001 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
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Business Wire/ 05/11/2001
ATI Joins Russian Institute to Form Technology Park in Russia
BERLIN, May 11, 2001 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Advanced Technology Industries Inc. (OTCBB:AVDI) has entered into an agreement for incorporated companies under the law of the Russian Federation to form an Incubator/Technology Park in Zhelesnogorsk (formerly known as Krasnoyarsk-26), one of the "closed cities" of the Former Soviet Union.
This business venture is known as the "International Centre of Advanced Technologies". The founding members are NIFTI and ATI. The legal address of the International Centre of Advanced Technologies is Akademgorodok, P.B. 8678, 66036 Krasnoyarsk, Russian Federation.
Zhelesnogorsk is the largest underground nuclear complex in the world. The nuclear mega-labyrinth is located 250-300 meters deep under the surface. It consists of 3,500 rooms and halls and operates under the name, "Mining and Chemical Combinate" (MCC). The complex has three nuclear reactors for plutonium production, one reprocessing facility for the production of plutonium-dioxide and uranium-nitrate.
Two of the nuclear reactors have been decommissioned and the third reactor is still under operation to supply the 120,000 inhabitants of the above ground city of Zheleznogorsk with electricity and heat. The facility houses extensive underground storage capacity for both liquid and solid nuclear wastes. There are current plans to establish Zhelesnogorsk internationally as a center which is offering its services for nuclear waste management for interim storage and reprocessing or final storage of nuclear waste.
Discussions between MCC, the administration of Zhelesnogorsk, NIFTI and ATI are being conducted to define the exact boundaries of the real property within the "closed city". Approximately 13 hectares have been identified as suitable for the facility. This area consists of production facilities previously used for assembling micro-electronics. It also includes a former laboratory used for nuclear technologies and an uncompleted production hall.
The proposed plan is to complete the hall for development and production of proposed conversion technologies and to reestablish the structure and operations of the laboratory to develop applications for nuclear waste remediation technologies. Operating budgets are currently being prepared and various submissions for multilateral agency funding are in process.
This plan has been developed utilizing the existing structure of the Zhelesnogorsk Development Center, which was founded in 1999 with a U.S. Department of Energy (U.S. DOE) grant. This grant was issued pursuant to the Nuclear Cities Initiative Program of the DOE. The Nuclear Cities Initiative (NCI) is a cooperative program between the United States and the Russian Federation established to promote business development and job creation in Russia's closed nuclear cities.
ATI believes this business model qualifies for existing international funding agency programs, including U.S. DOE/NCI and the Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention (IPP) programs.
The IPP program cooperatively engages Russian weapons scientists, engineers and technicians currently or formerly engaged with weapons of mass destruction (or related technologies) on non-weapons related projects. This program identifies and creates non-military, commercial opportunities for Russian defense technologies.
The process of commercial evaluation, partnership formation and assistance in commercialization is provided by the U.S. Industry Coalition (USIC), a Delaware 501c3 corporation. This is a U.S. government supported coalition of private companies. ATI became a member of the USIC in 2000. USIC acts as the commercialization agent for the U.S. Department of Energy's IPP program.
USIC supports IPP by providing U.S. Industry partners to work in tandem on cost-shared projects with the U.S. National Laboratories and Russian weapons institutes. Both the NCI and IPP programs work with the direct participation of one, or more, of 11 U.S. National Laboratories.
Currently more than 3,300 Russian scientists are working with more than 220 U.S. National Laboratory scientists. U.S. Industry partners include General Electric, Exxon, DuPont, Boeing, Aquila Technologies, Phygen, Raton Technology Research Inc., Lasen Inc. and others.
Discussions are ongoing with agencies of the Federal Republic of Germany and other European multilateral agencies for additional financial support.
NIFTI, cooperating partner of ATI in the management of the Centre, was formed by Decree No. 69 of June 19, 1991, through the transformation of three departments of Krasnoyarsk State University into The Research Institute of Physics and Engineering (NIFTI) for the purpose of development of defense-related technologies.
In 1993, the NIFTI board adapted a program of full-scale conversion, from defense related to research intensive technologies and products, aimed to solve the problems of Siberian industries. Today the mission of NIFTI is directed to fundamental research and engineering in utilization of nuclear wastes, industrial waste recovery, explosion physics, composites, ultra-dispersed and ceramic materials and aluminum production related technologies.
They develop and commercialize new innovations from start-up stage to prototyping, marketing and business planning. ATI and NIFTI have identified technology projects over the last 12 months that are suitable for development in the period 2001-2002.
The International Centre is being organized into specific Focus Groups:
-- Nuclear Waste Management
-- Environmental Pollution
-- Life Sciences
-- Fire protection materials
-- Aluminum production and environmental by-product technologies.
Functioning through the above Focus Groups the International Centre for Advanced Technologies is intended to provide cooperative research and development agreements (CRADA) with nuclear and military scientists, engineers and technicians in order to promote non-military employment opportunities and to convert military production facilities to non-military technologies.
This plan is intended to provide strategic partners access to an extensive portfolio of technologies developed within the armament laboratories of the Former Soviet Union. The initial and primary focus of this commercialization of former armament technologies will be those from the "closed cities" of Zhelesnogorsk (Karsnoyarsk-26), Zelenogorsk (Krasnoyarsk-45), Seversk (Tomsk-7) and Snezhinsk (Chelyabinsk-70).
Additionally, it will provide access to research and engineering resources, scientists, engineers and personnel. These services are being provided from the existing infrastructure of these four "closed cities". ATI is currently developing a plan to recruit additional strategic partners to provide additional services, e.g. research and development, financing, and global marketing.
Advanced Technology Industries is a technology enabling holding company that transforms old world markets into new world networks by amassing, enhancing and distributing intellectual capital from incubation to global alliances.
ATI works in cooperation with the agencies of the United States, Russian Federation, Federal Republic of Germany, the State of Israel and multilateral agencies, such as the European Union and the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development, to promote the transfer of new technology from the military industrial industries and research institutes of the former Soviet Union, including the "closed cities" of the Russian Federation, to the private sector and industry.
These objectives are designed to promote nuclear non-proliferation and provide opportunities to institutes, military industrial organizations, weapons scientists and engineers to create new businesses, improve industrial efficiency, increase employment, enhance trade, preserve the environment and improve the quality of life.
Certain information and statements included in this news release constitute "forward looking statements" within the meaning of the Federal Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause the actual results, performance, or achievement of the company to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements.
©Copyright 2001 Business Wire. All rights reserved
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Young Russian scientists visiting Japan
TOKYO,May 30, 2001 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Ten young scientists from the Institute of Far Eastern Studies under the Russian Academy of Sciences visited Japan on May 22-30 at the invitation of the Japanese-Russian Centre of Youth Exchanges. The Russian specialists saw the sights of Tokyo and visited the cities of Sapporo and Nemuro in the northern part of the Hokkaido Island, Viktor Pavlyatenko, head of the Centre of Japanese Studies of the institute and head of the delegation, told Tass on Wednesday.
During their stay in Hokkaido, the Russian scientists familiarised themselves with the work of the Centre of Slavonic Studies at the local university and met representatives of the Hokkaido administration, young Japanese businessmen and former residents of the South Kurile Islands. According to Pavlyatenko, during an open and frank discussion on problems of Russian-Japanese relations both parties pointed to the importance of establishing more close contacts between representatives of the public of both countries.
Visits of Russian youth delegations to Japan at the invitation of the Centre of Youth Exchanges were started in the summer of 1999. Many students studying the Japanese language, servicemen, officials from the Russian Foreign Ministry, teachers, cultural personalities, representatives of the Russian mass media and athletes have visited Japan within the framework of that programme. The Centre of Youth Exchanges was created in May 1999 for the purpose of promoting comprehensive development of contacts between young people from the two countries. With this in view Tokyo agreed to play host to 1,000 Russians and allocated 15 million dollars for that purpose.
© 1996-2001 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
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Russia wants to export high technologies to Syria
MOSCOW, May 18 (Interfax) -- Russia wants to export its high technologies to Syria, Industry, Science and Technologies Minister Alexander Dondukov told the press on Thursday. Dondukov and Syrian Economics and Foreign Trade Minister Dr. Muhammad al-Imadi earlier in the day signed the final document of the second meeting of the bilateral inter-governmental commission on cooperation in industry, economy, science and technology.
Russian-Syrian cooperation covers various fields of the economy, such as the construction and operation of irrigation systems, nuclear energy, engineering, transport and communications, Dondukov said. The commission meeting discussed, in particular, issues of cultural cooperation between the two countries, he said. Arms supply was not mentioned in the documents, because the experts did not discuss it, Dondukov said. This kind of cooperation may be discussed later, he said.
© 1996-2000 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
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Associated Press / Monday May 21 12:33 PM ET
Russians Recall Andrei Sakharov
- By Sarah Karush, Associated Press Writer
MOSCOW, (AP) -- Andrei Sakharov, the late physicist who was harassed by Soviet authorities for his outspoken criticism of the communist regime, was honored by Russians on Monday on what would have been his 80th birthday.
Sakharov, who designed the Soviet hydrogen bomb, became a staunch promoter of human rights and world peace and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975.
Sakharov's birthday was marked by ceremonies in Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod, the provincial city where Sakharov spent seven years in exile.
Television news shows featured retrospectives on his life. Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev laid flowers at a bust of Sakharov at Moscow International University.
The reformist Gorbachev released Sakharov from exile in 1986, but Sakharov cont/nued his vocal criticism and their relationship was often tense. On Monday, RTR state television showed footage from the 1989 Congress of
People's Deputies, at which Gorbachev reluctantly allowed Sakharov to take the floor, but then harshly interrupted him, saying he had exceeded the allotted time.
Gorbachev on Monday called Sakharov "a man of conscience, an impressive moral authority for all of us", the Interfax news agency reported.
"He was a great citizen, quiet and delicate, but an unbending man". In Nizhny Novgorod, known in Soviet times as Gorky, scientists and community leaders laid flowers at the house where Sakharov lived and broke ground for the Sakharov Garden next door, the ITAR-Tass news agency said. A tribute concert at the Moscow Conservatory on Monday evening featured violist Yuri Bashmet and the State Symphony Orchestra. Sakharov's ailing widow Yelena Bonner, who lives most of the time in the United States and had been expected to address the audience, did not appear.
Since his death in 1989, Sakharov has received wide recognition from Russian authorities, to the point that a street in central Moscow bears his name. But Bonner remains a harsh critic of the authorities and says the country's leaders do not understand her husband's legacy.
© Copyright 2001 The Associated Press. All rights reserved
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Reuters / Thursday May 31 12:16 PM ET
Russia MP Sees Soviet-Style Muzzling of Scientists
MOSCOW, (Reuters) -- A top parliamentarian said on Thursday Russia's main scientific body had told its members to report all dealings with foreigners in a return of Soviet-style control, but a government official denied such an order existed.
Sergei Kovalyov, a veteran human rights activist and a Duma member, said the existence of an order from the Russian Academy of Sciences to its members corresponded with a new suspicion of the West fostered by the FSB domestic security service.
"Such directives are in line with current Kremlin policy, and this creates great worry", Kovalyov told Ekho Moskvy radio, which earlier published a copy of what it said was the document.
Millionaire philanthropist George Soros said during a visit to Moscow that if the directive existed it was "shocking".
Kovalyov said the order, which he insisted the Academy of Science did not want published, also contained a clause which could be used to limit scientists' access to the Internet.
"Trials linked to the so-called excessive freedom of scientific research are not so rare for us now", Kovalyov said.
The FSB has also already launched several high-profile spying cases: two against naval officers who worked with foreign environmental agencies and one against a researcher for the respected USA and Canada Institute.
Ekho Moskvy published what it said were key parts of the document, which told scientists to detail foreign grants, results of trips abroad, copies of articles for publication outside Russia and details of visits by foreign scientists.
Full details of international contracts or agreements must be supplied by June 1, Ekho Moskvy said.
Deputy Prime Minister Valentina Matviyenko was quoted by RIA news agency as denying the existence of such an edict. "I respect the human rights work of Sergei Kovalyov but sometimes he uses unverified information", she said.
ENVIRONMENTALISTS, SCIENTISTS TARGETED BY FSB
However, fears of the rise of the FSB have grown under President Vladimir Putin, a former head of the organization and a one-time KGB spy in former East Germany. Putin has also named several ex-security service men to high-profile positions.
The FSB has said its case against researcher Igor Sutyagin from the USA and Canada Institute was a warning to other scientists not to leak confidential information.
Arms expert Sutyagin has been in jail since October 1999, accused of passing nuclear submarine secrets to the U.S. and Britain. He denies the charges and his lawyers say he only compiled his reports from open sources.
Human rights groups have said Sutyagin's fate mirrors that of environmental whistle-blowers Alexander Nikitin and Grigory Pasko, naval officers who were taken to court after exposing Russia's dumping of nuclear waste.
Last year, the FSB arrested U.S. businessman Edmond Pope for trying to buy Russian secrets. He was convicted to 20 years in a penal colony in December, but Putin pardoned him soon after.
© 2001 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved