270 million yen allotted for ILC-related items in national budget for FY2019

The original article was published in the Iwate Nippo (December 22nd edition). Read the original here.

The national government released their budget for fiscal year 2019 on December 21st. Within, 270 million yen was allotted for technology development costs associated with the ILC. Joint research will also continue with the US on reducing the costs associated with advanced accelerators. The amount was 10 million yen more than the original budgetary request, which takes into account the estimated raise in consumption tax (to go into effect in 2019).

Technological development for reducing costs for large-scale particle accelerators will also continue. This money will largely be used on the research being carried out by Japan’s KEK (High Energy Accelerator Research Association) and the USA’s FNAL (Fermilab) to reduce the costs associated with procuring and processing niobium, a rare metal used in the superconductive accelerator cavities.

In a separate budget item, 160 million yen was allocated within the government’s operations grant to KEK for ILC costs, the same figure as the original budgetary request.

The national budget for ILC-related costs for the 2018 fiscal year was 260 million yen, and 160 million yen was additional secured within the KEK subsidy.

The Federation of Diet Members for the ILC had called for the line item to actually use the words “ILC,” but it was entered into the budget as “Developing Core Technology for the Next-Generation in Particle Accelerators” (the same name it has been called as in past years). The head of the budget at the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology explained, “This budget item received all the money that was requested for it. There is some debate going on about the ILC, but it was recognized that it was important to continue researching and looking into the project.”