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Russian tech experts set sights on developing domestic power source for X-rays

The EleSy company and Tomsk Polytechnic University have begun efforts on developing a new power supply source for X-ray machines. Using this new source, highly precise data can be obtained during the course of X-ray examinations.
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The new device is being designed as a part of the import substitution program.

«We had been developing a new tomographic scanner when we realized that the bulk of the essential components for these apparatuses have foreign origins. This makes the devices and the technology of their manufacture quite costly. On the domestic market, there are no available high-quality high-voltage power supply sources for X-ray tubes. Together with our industrial partner, we have started on the development of such an apparatus-program complex which should replace similar foreign devices and hopefully outperform them in some areas,» TPU’s Alexey Goryunov stated.

An X-ray tube is the main component of X-ray machines. For any X-ray device to function steadily and get a high resolution of X-ray spectra, an X-ray tube must be supplied with a high-voltage power source with an output voltage from 10 to 200 kV. With that in mind, the output voltage should be kept constant or varying only within a narrow range. The Tomsk tech experts seek to create a power source with an output voltage varying not more than by 0.5%, that is, 20 times smaller than in housing units and half the amount required for medical apparatus.

Right now, scientists and engineers are working on three types of test models: low power (10−30 kV); medium power (20−70 kV); and high power (60−200 kV). The challenge is to not only create the device itself, but the entire industrial technology for manufacturing high-voltage power supply sources using only domestic components.

Devices based on X-ray tubes are widely applied not only in medicine, but also in material science, biochemistry, crystallography, and defect examination. For example, using these devices, one can estimate the state of road pavement or pipelines, reveal the structure of substances, and uncover dangerous items in closed containers. The new power source can be used in any of these devices.

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