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Mayo Clinic’s New Research Building Growing to 11 Floors

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ROCHESTER, Minn. — The long tradition of biomedical innovation that makes up Mayo Clinic’s DNA will continue with the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building on the Rochester, Minnesota, campus, set to open in the fourth quarter of 2023. Research is the engine that drives advances in medical care, and the new facility will enable the team-based scientists of Mayo Clinic to continue finding care solutions for patients.

Funded in part through a gift from the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation as well as other generous benefactors, the energy-efficient structure will feature 11 floors and 176,000 square feet of flexible laboratory space. Philanthropy will play a key role in its completion. The building will be located at the intersection of 3rd Street SW and 4th Avenue SW with underground connectors to the Opus and Baldwin Buildings.

"Research is a key pillar of our 2030 strategy," says Gianrico Farrugia, M.D. , Mayo Clinic's president and CEO. "We’re committed to advancing more cures, connecting more patients to our expanded expertise, and transforming health care for people everywhere. And that transformation starts with research."

The new building's high-profile exterior showcases Mayo Clinic's commitment to transformative biomedical research. The integrated work environment continues the legacy of team science and collaboration with incremental facilities for basic and translational cancer biology as well as other areas of scientific inquiry.

"The generous commitment from the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation, totaling $49.3 million, and gifts from other benefactors will enable us to create a building that fits into Mayo Clinic’s '2030 Bold. Forward.' research priorities, supporting flexibility and growth for emerging scientific technologies. Mayo Clinic investigators will be able to discover and translate even more breakthroughs to address the unmet needs of patients," says Gregory Gores, M.D. , Kinney Executive Dean for Research, Mayo Clinic.

The building initially was announced in 2019 as a four-story building. The pandemic experience has demonstrated the need to grow and accelerate scientific advancements, and science is conducted in physical space. The facility will complement community and industry partners dedicated to improving patient care, health and wellness in downtown Rochester's DMC Discovery Square district , a research, innovation and development hub.

The Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation has been a significant contributor to Mayo Clinic over many years, funding various initiatives and projects in support of Mayo Clinic's priorities. The foundation leaders' late parents, Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen, received care at Mayo Clinic for decades, and that trust and care have continued into the next generations of the family.

About Mayo Clinic Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit organization committed to innovation in clinical practice, education and research, and providing compassion, expertise and answers to everyone who needs healing. Visit the  Mayo Clinic News Network  for additional Mayo Clinic news. For information on COVID-19, including Mayo Clinic's Coronavirus Map tracking tool, which has 14-day forecasting on COVID-19 trends, visit the  Mayo Clinic COVID-19 Resource Center .

Media contact:

  • Kelley Luckstein, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs,  [email protected]
  • COVID-19: Who’s at higher risk of serious symptoms? Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast: Reducing rejection by reversing order of heart-liver transplant

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StarTribune

Mayo clinic opens new cancer research facility — its first major building in rochester in decades.

ROCHESTER – Mayo Clinic's newest cancer research facility is about to start work.

The first wave of researchers are expected to move into the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building in downtown Rochester next week after more than two and a half years of construction. Mayo officials held a grand-opening ceremony Wednesday marking the occasion.

"This will help address the future unmet needs of our patients," Dr. Gregory Gores, executive dean of research at Mayo Clinic, said in a statement.

The $120 million facility is 11 stories tall with a distinctive scrim wrap structure that gives off futuristic vibes and helps reduce energy costs. Each floor will house six to seven labs, with up to 700 workers on hand. Mayo officials say about a quarter of the staff will be new hires.

The Kellen Building is named after former Mayo Clinic patients. Stephen Kellen, who was chief executive of an investment firm based in New York, and his wife were among four generations to receive care at Mayo Clinic. The foundation bearing their name donated a total of $49 million to kick-start the project .

Mayo officials say researchers there will work with other labs in the city primarily on cancer research, with some neuroscience projects and other disease research in the mix.

That work will start in phases as construction crews are still working on some of the upper floors. The building is expected to be completed by summer 2024.

The Kellen Building is the first major Mayo Clinic building project completed in Rochester since the clinic opened the Gonda Building in 2001. Mayo officials recently finalized a $5 billion expansion in downtown Rochester to erect five buildings and expand patient care in the city. Those projects, expected to be finished over the next six years, will drastically change Rochester's skyline.

Trey Mewes is a reporter based in Rochester for the Star Tribune. Sign up to receive the Rochester Now newsletter.

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Mayo Clinic Completes $120M Anna-Maria And Stephen Kellen Research Building In Minnesota

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., opened the new $120 million Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen research building in the Discovery Square district in downtown Rochester.

The 11-story, 176,000-square-foot project houses laboratories and collaborative workspaces.

Subway tunnels connect the facility to other nearby Mayo Clinic research buildings.

For more on Mayo Clinic, go here .

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Mayo Clinic leaders mark major milestone in construction of new research building

Mayo Clinic beam ceremony

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Mayo Clinic leaders marked a major milestone in construction of the new research building that will be located downtown Rochester.

Mayo Clinic’s Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building will include incremental facilities for basic and translational cancer biology as well as other areas of scientific inquiry, according to Mayo Clinic.

The building will be accessible from the subway and street level, where it will connect key research capabilities in the Southwest edge of the Rochester campus and serve as Mayo Clinic’s primary focal point for translational research.

The commemorative “topping off” ceremony was held Monday morning where the last beam was signed and placed on the 11th floor of the building.

Mayo Clinic Research and executive leaders, elected officials and community leaders joined the ceremony.

Below are photos of what the building will look like when finished. The building is set to open at the end of 2023.

Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building

A time lapse of the construction can be found here.

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Mayo Clinic wants to create 'future of medicine' in new research center

Apr. 28—Mayo Clinic designed the proposed $120 million Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building to serve as a "window" into its research to create "the medicine of the future."

Dr. Y.S. Prakash, Mayo Clinic's chair of physiology and biomedical engineering, said this is the first opportunity to design a new Mayo Clinic scientific research center that has arisen in years.

Currently, the only research-only buildings on the Rochester campus are the Stabile and Guggenheim buildings.

It was announced Tuesday that the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building design, which was introduced in 2019, has almost tripled in size. What was originally a four-story building grew to 11 stories with 176,000 square feet of lab space.

The new center is being built on the corner of Third Street and Fourth Avenue Southwest. That's just north of the Opus Imaging Research Building. Mayo Clinic's Connolly Building, which previously stood on that site, was demolished in January to clear the way for the project. Mayo Clinic officials say the goal is to break ground yet this spring and open the Kellen building in the fourth quarter of 2023.

"It's a golden opportunity," Prakash said. "One of our priorities with the building is to showcase the fantastic research that Mayo Clinic is doing ... a forward-looking building that would highlight a window into what is going on at Mayo Clinic."

To emphasize how this center is different, the design features a very unique exterior, with plans showing sweeping and random opaque shapes covering parts of the building. While details on exactly what materials will be used to create that effect are still being worked out, Prakash said that the "futuristic" look will represent the innovative work expected to be done in the Kellen center.

"There is a story that goes with the building. That is something we have not done in the past," he said.

In 2019, Mayo Clinic surveyed its researchers to learn what they would like to see in a new laboratory complex. They asked for dynamic and agile environments to encourage collaboration. The novel design of the Kellen building is the result.

Gregory Gores, Mayo Clinic's Executive Dean for Research, described the building design as "supporting flexibility and growth for emerging scientific technologies."

Following in the footsteps of the One Discovery Square design, the new research center will feature open spaces to encourage collaboration and connections between researchers who might not normally interact with each other.

Unlike in past situations, the Kellen building is not being driven by an immediate need, allowing the design to be more proactive rather than reactive. It will house Mayo Clinic research projects, many focused on cancer. Some research will move from other sites, and some will be new projects.

The goal is to create a place to foster and spotlight cutting-edge science.

"One of the key things we need to do is to think differently about how we do research, while keeping the workforce of the future in mind," Prakash said. "This is where Mayo Clinic will make the medicine of the future happen."

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Integrated Education and Research Building groundbreaking in Arizona

April 1, 2022

By Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science staff

On March 31, another milestone was met as education leaders in Arizona ceremoniously turned dirt to signify the beginning of construction of the Integrated Education and Research building as part of the Phoenix campus capital expansion plan. The new building will further expand Mayo’s education and research collaboration with the practice to better serve the complex unmet needs of our patients.

The new building, which is expected to be completed in 2024, will be home to Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science and its five schools (Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine; Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education; Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences; Mayo Clinic School of Biomedical Sciences; Mayo Clinic School of Continuous Professional Development), and more than 20 biomedical and translational research labs. Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine also will retain space at the Scottsdale campus, as will Mayo’s research programs at the Mayo Clinic Collaborative Research Building and the Samuel C. Johnson Medical Research Building.

The following is a digital rendering of the Integrated Education and Research building.

Rendering of Mayo Clinic Integrated Education and Research Building in Arizona

While addressing current space limitations is important , the planning behind the building expects the greatest value of the Integrated Education and Research Building to lies in its synergies. The creation of workspaces, in which clinicians and scientists work and learn side by side, will lead to the development of transformative technologies and solutions to heal patients. This mixed environment will provide a daily reminder to students and learners of the importance of research and biomedical education.

The neighboring building will be the Health Futures Building of Arizona State University. Being on the hospital campus and between these two new buildings, scientists, learners, educators, and physicians will all intermingle, which will, most importantly, increase intentional collisions and create a richer environment.

Education is the foundational pillar of our three Mayo Clinic shields. Mayo Clinic's strategy to cure, connect and transform are bold and aspirational — but at Mayo Clinic — achievable. By leveraging the talent and potential of every member of our workforce, by investing in ourselves, and by creating and developing the skillsets that we need to serve our mission.

Devyani Lal, M.D. Chair of Education in Arizona and speaker at the groundbreaking event

Devyani Lal, M.D.

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  • Planning Underway for New Integrated Education and Research Building in Phoenix

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Regents approve Mayo Clinic Health System’s lease of space in new science building

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN-EAU CLAIRE PRESS RELEASE) - The Universities of Wisconsin System Board of Regents has approved a lease for Mayo Clinic Health System to occupy integrated research workspace in the new Science and Health Sciences Building at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Regents on Monday approved the 30-year lease of 10,000 square feet of research, instructional, office and meeting space in the building to be occupied by Mayo Clinic Health System. Mayo Clinic Health System has committed $13.7 million to the project and will have space on all five floors of the building that will be integrated into the UW-Eau Claire faculty and student spaces.

Construction is scheduled to begin this summer on the $340.3 million state-of-the-art Science and Health Sciences Building.

The 330,000-square-foot Science and Health Sciences Building will replace the outdated Phillips Hall and will house space for multiple academic programs: biology, chemistry and biochemistry, computer science, geography and anthropology, geology and environmental science, public health and environmental studies, neuroscience, materials science and biomedical engineering, physics and astronomy, and nursing.

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Mayo Clinic marks construction milestone at new research building

Mayo Clinic

Newswise — ROCHESTER, Minn. ­— Today, Mayo Clinic celebrated a milestone at the construction site of an 11-floor building where researchers will make scientific breakthroughs that address the unmet needs of patients. The event marks the  Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building's  topping-off, meaning the structure has reached its full height. Community and Mayo Clinic leaders signed a commemorative beam to be placed atop the building, which is at the intersection of 3rd Street Southwest and 4th Avenue Southwest in Rochester.

At Mayo Clinic, research is the engine that drives advances in medical care. The investment in an expanded research footprint in the Discovery Square district honors the Mayo brothers' legacy of team science. The building will include flexible facilities for basic and translational investigation to address serious and complex conditions, as well as a prominent focus on discovery in cancer research.

"The new building will accelerate research in support of Mayo Clinic's strategy by further coalescing investigators and technology to advance biomedical discoveries," says  Gregory Gores, M.D. , Kinney Executive Dean of Research, Mayo Clinic. "We are relentless in our pursuit to translate scientific discoveries into breakthrough therapies for patients who look to us for hope and healing. Our research community is thrilled to see this midway point for the building."

"Generous gifts from the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation and from other benefactors enable us to create a facility that drives Mayo Clinic's 2030 'Bold. Forward.' research priorities," says  Gianrico Farrugia, M.D. , president and CEO, Mayo Clinic. "We’re committed to providing world-class space to our staff so they may advance research to deliver new cures for our patients. This space also will help us engage new people to join us to transform health care."

The building, expected to open at the end of 2023, will have 11 floors, 176,000 square feet and a subway connector to be built in a single construction project. The new research facility complements community and industry partners dedicated to improving patient care, health and wellness in downtown Rochester's  Destination Medical Center Discovery Square district , a research, innovation and development hub.

Watch a  time-lapse video  of the building's construction.

About Mayo Clinic Mayo Clinic  is a nonprofit organization committed to innovation in clinical practice, education and research, and providing compassion, expertise and answers to everyone who needs healing. Visit the  Mayo Clinic News Network  for additional Mayo Clinic news.

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new mayo research building

Mayo Clinic Announces New Research Facility

Eleven-story facility initially announced in 2019 as four-story building

By Dan Hounsell

As healthcare organizations begin to emerge from the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, announcements of new and restarted construction projects are becoming more frequent. Now one-high profile research institution has joined in.

The Mayo Clinic recently announced that its Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Building on the Rochester, Minn., campus will open in 2023. The new facility will enable the team-based scientists of Mayo Clinic to continue finding care solutions for patients. The energy-efficient structure will feature 11 floors and 176,000 square feet of flexible laboratory space.

The new building's high-profile exterior showcases Mayo Clinic's commitment to transformative biomedical research. The integrated work environment continues the legacy of team science and collaboration with incremental facilities for basic and translational cancer biology as well as other areas of scientific inquiry.

The building initially was announced in 2019 as a four-story building. The pandemic experience has demonstrated the need to grow and accelerate scientific advancements, and science is conducted in physical space. The facility will complement community and industry partners in downtown Rochester's DMC Discovery Square district, a research, innovation and development hub.

April 30, 2021

Topic Area: Construction

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Mayo Clinic Announces $5 Billion Expansion of Minnesota Campus

The Mayo Clinic has announced a $5 billion expansion plan that includes new buildings designed so they can evolve and expand as patient needs change over the coming decades

Jim Mone

FILE - A pedestrian mall leads to the campus of the Mayo Clinic complex, center, on July 2, 2019, in Rochester, Minn. The Mayo Clinic has announced a $5 billion expansion plan that includes new buildings designed so they can evolve and expand as patient needs change over the coming decades. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, file)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Mayo Clinic announced a $5 billion expansion plan for its flagship campus Tuesday that includes new buildings designed so they can evolve and expand as patient needs change over the coming decades.

The project is part of a Mayo strategy to transform both patient care and its campus in downtown Rochester, about 80 miles (130 kilometers) southeast of Minneapolis. This storied hospital is known for its patient care as well as scientific breakthroughs in cancer and gene therapies. It draws patients from around the world.

A key to it will be the creation of “neighborhoods” within the new facilities, where patients can go for all the services they need for their particular condition, such as cancer, without needing to be shuttled between various departments. Another component of that strategy will be integrating in-person and virtual visits, and taking advantage of artificial intelligence , including to accelerate the development of new cures.

The idea is to blur the traditional lines between inpatient and outpatient care, and between digital and in-person care, Dr. Gianrico Farrugia, Mayo's CEO, said in an interview. That requires rethinking how the buildings themselves are designed, he said.

“This is not about making a nicer facility," Farrugia said. "This is making a place that will give a better outcome.”

Announcing the project in a ceremony in Rochester Tuesday, Farrugia called it Mayo's biggest and most ambitious investment in a 160-year history of innovation. He said their vision is for more than just creating better spaces for patients and staff.

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“We know that for overall health care transformation, indeed even for digital innovation to thrive in health care, we also need new types of health care buildings," he said at the ceremony attended by Gov. Tim Walz. "Across the country we’re providing 21st century care in 20th century buildings. It is simply, by far, not good enough.”

Mayo will add five new buildings with 2.4 million square feet (223,000 square meters) of space as part of the project. They’ll be designed so their spaces can be easily converted to new uses when needs change, such as from patient rooms to operating rooms.

Much of that space will be in two new clinical buildings at the center of campus. Each will have nine floors but they'll be as tall as a more conventional 16-story building, and they'll be designed strong enough so that more floors could be added in the future. Skyways and tunnels will connect the new facilities with existing buildings.

“We’re not building buildings with the purpose of putting bricks and mortar together," Dr. Craig Daniels, the initiative leader, said at the ceremony. "We make this investment to continue our mission, to serve the needs of our patients by being their source of hope and healing.”

Mayo, an independent nonprofit, is funding the project with its own revenue sources as part of its long-term plans and will not ask for government money, Farrugia said in the interview. Most construction will begin in early 2024. Some facilities are expected to begin operating as early as 2028, with completion projected for 2030.

Farrugia said Mayo hopes the new facilities will "serve as an example for what a global health care facility should look like.”

Walz praised the plan, saying Mayo's investment will foster “bold innovation” that will extend “world-class health care to every corner of the globe.”

Copyright 2023 The  Associated Press . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Mayo Clinic unveils plans for a new $5 billion campus in downtown Rochester

Leaders hope health 'neighborhoods’ will streamline care for patients, staff

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A $5 billion plan to redesign Mayo Clinic’s Rochester campus will attempt to upend the traditional health care model where patients ping-pong between buildings and appointments and replace it with health care neighborhoods that bring services to patients based on their clinical needs.

In a plan unveiled Tuesday, Mayo leaders said they envision these “health neighborhoods” as places where patients can access continuous care. Many patients come to Mayo and stay for extended periods seeking treatment for complicated issues. Emerging technology, including artificial intelligence and automation, will streamline and enhance the patient experience. 

Rendering of clinic01

Mayo is titling the initiative “Bold. Forward. Unbound.”

“Health care is often felt by patients as being fragmented and episodic,” said Dr. Craig Daniels who is leading the effort.

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“We have outpatient care models and inpatient care models and we move patients back and forth. But we’re really working in a 20th century model of health care with patients who have 21st century health care needs.” 

In these neighborhoods, patients will have access to labs, imaging, consultations and clinics, designed to be flexible. That’s different from the traditional hospital model where some floors are dedicated to surgery, while others are designed for hospital beds. 

The facility will focus on complex care — treating patients who have multiple health problems at once. Daniels used the example of a relapse cancer patient who is also pregnant.

“They don’t want to experience those things over two weeks of traveling between multiple buildings and waiting for multiple appointments, they need those things to be around them to solve their problems quickly and come to the right team decision making,” he said. 

Current plans, recently approved by Mayo’s board of trustees, will feature five new buildings for a total of 2.4 million square feet in a swath of town between the hospital’s oldest facility, St. Marys Hospital, and its newer buildings downtown. 

This stretch of land has been the subject of new zoning rules and new commercial development, as well as the site of a future bus rapid transit line — all elements of Rochester’s massive, 20-year Destination Medical Center economic development plan. 

The new facilities will connect directly to Mayo Clinic’s Gonda building on its downtown campus, where outpatient care is centered. 

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The new model will also streamline staff work by relying on new technologies, including remote monitoring, artificial intelligence and automation that will ultimately allow practitioners to spend more time with the patient and speed discharge times, said Dr. Amy Williams, executive dean of practice. 

“Before that patient arrives, [Mayo will get their] information, all that data, having it at the fingertips of the care team to decide, what do they need, what is the most likely diagnosis here, and that will help that will be the start of their journey, even before they get here,” she said. 

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The plan also includes a new logistics center on the site of an old school downtown, as well as 800 additional parking spots. 

With funding for the project approved by the board, Daniels said the next step is to work with the city to get construction permits and to work with surrounding neighborhoods to gather feedback on the proposal.

That process will start in early 2024, he said, with the goal of opening some facilities in 2028 and for the project to be completed in 2030.

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Burevestnik: a Russian air-launched anti-satellite system

By bart hendrickx monday, april 27, 2020.

In September 2018, an aircraft photographer noticed something interesting while observing activity at the Gromov Flight Research Institute in Zhukovsky near Moscow, sometimes called the “Russian Edwards Air Force Base.” What caught his attention was a MiG-31BM fighter jet with a large black missile suspended under its belly. While this specific aircraft had been seen before, the rocket was new. The pictures he posted on the Internet baffled observers: it seemed to be too big to be an air-to-air or an air-to-surface missile. It did appear to be the right size for an anti-satellite weapon.

The pictures brought back memories of a Soviet-era ASAT project called Kontakt, which comprised the MiG-31D aircraft and a missile of the MKB Fakel design bureau outfitted with a kinetic kill vehicle. Kontakt was the Soviet response to the American Air-Launched Miniature Vehicle or ASM-135A, which destroyed a US satellite in September 1985 after having been dropped from an F-15 fighter jet. Test flights of the MiG-31D with the missile were reportedly conducted in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but without targeting satellites.

So it looked like the new project could well be a reincarnation of Kontakt, as was speculated in many articles in the weeks following the release of the pictures. Backing up that idea were at least two statements made by Russian officials. In August 2009, the commander-in-chief of the Russian Air Force, Aleksandr Zelin, had declared that the MiG-31 was being upgraded to perform the same space defense tasks as in the Soviet days. About eight years later, in February 2017, a squadron commander of the Russian Aerospace Forces, Yevgeny Polyakov, was quoted as saying by the Russian Ministry of Defense’s Zvezda TV channel that a new missile was being developed for the MiG-31BM “capable of destroying targets in near-space.”

Analysis of publicly accessible online Russian sources now leaves little doubt that the MiG-31BM and the rocket are part of a broader ASAT project called Burevestnik (“Stormy Petrel”). Most likely, the rocket will not carry a kinetic kill vehicle like its Soviet-era predecessor, but will serve as a launch vehicle for small interceptor satellites that can approach and disable enemy satellites.

Burevestnik, a popular name in Russian culture, was also the name given by popular vote to a nuclear-powered cruise missile (9M730) not long after it was unveiled by President Vladimir Putin during his State of the Union address in March 2018. This has no connection whatsoever to the ASAT project.

The Burevestnik satellites

Burevestnik has never been discussed in Russia’s state-controlled media or even in specialized Russian space publications, but details about the project have slowly leaked out in recent years, mainly via openly available tender documentation and contracts on Russia’s government procurement website. These showed that the project began on September 1, 2011, with a government contract awarded to the Design Bureau of Machine Building (NPK KBM), a weapon manufacturer based in Kolomna (about 100 kilometers southeast of Moscow) that seems to be the overall coordinator of the project. At the end of that same month, NPK KBM signed a contract with a Moscow-based organization called the Central Scientific Research Institute of Chemistry and Mechanics (TsNIIKhM or CNIIHM), which in turn subcontracted work on satellites called Burevestnik-M.

Another phase in the project began on December 1, 2015, when NPK KBM received another government contract under which CNIIHM subsequently performed work on satellites named Burevestnik-KA-M. The difference between Burevestnik-M and Burevestnik-KA-M is not known, but a PowerPoint presentation (in Russian) of a Russian solar panel and battery manufacturer (PAO Saturn) that somehow ended up online in May last year clearly identified them as two different satellites. The hush-hush nature of the project as well as the background of some of the contractors involved strongly pointed to an ASAT role, as was discussed in an earlier article here (see “Russia’s secret satellite builder” , The Space Review, May 9, 2019).

The Burevestnik rocket

What has emerged from further research in recent weeks is that the scope of the Burevestnik project is much broader than earlier believed. First, it turned out that another component of the project is a solid-fuel rocket. A rocket by the name Burevestnik first showed up in the annual report of the Russian Academy of Sciences for 2015, where it was said to be one of several rockets for which new types of solid propellant were being developed. No further details on it emerged in the following years.

Analysis of procurement documents now shows that the rocket has the code name “293” and is built by NPO Iskra, a manufacturer of solid-fuel rocket motors in Perm (roughly 1,400 kilometers east of Moscow). Contracts for “293” (some of which also mention the name Burevestnik) refer back to the same September 1, 2011, contract awarded to NPK KBM that is also seen in documents on the Burevestnik satellites, leaving no doubt that the two are part of the same project. NPO Perm was assigned to “293” by NPK KBM on the very same day. Some of the contracts for “293” are based on an earlier government contract dated August 7, 2009, suggesting the roots of the project may go back even further.

Available contracts for the “293” rocket going back to 2013 regularly mention parts called 14D812, 14D813, and 14S47, which presumably are the rocket’s individual stages. 14S47 fits in a series of indexes for upper stages of space launch vehicles, strongly suggesting it performs the same role. Procurement documents placed online by NPO Iskra in recent months also show that the company began working in December 2018 on another rocket called “328”. The parts ordered for this indicate that it is a modified version of the “293” rocket, possibly using the new solid propellants mentioned in the 2015 Academy of Sciences report. Two companies linked to that work in the report are also seen in one of the contracts for the “328” rocket.

The MiG carrier aircraft

A search for the “293” rocket on Russia’s government procurement website subsequently revealed that it is an air-launched rocket to be carried aloft by a modified version of the MiG-31 aircraft. A contract (in Russian) signed by the Russian Aircraft Corporation MiG (RSK MiG) in August last year is for work “to determine the safety of operating Object 08 with Product 293 under the influence of naturally and artificially produced electromagnetic fields.” This work was to be completed in four months and would involve both a mock-up and “live” version of the rocket.

This is unmistakable evidence that “293”, the solid-fuel rocket built by NPO Iskra as part of Burevestnik, is designed to be carried by a MiG aircraft described as Object 08. This almost certainly is the MiG-31BM aircraft with number “81” that was seen carrying the mysterious black rocket in September 2018. One other RSK MiG contract (in Russian) that can be positively linked to Burevestnik refers to the aircraft more specifically as “Object 08/1”, a further indication that it is indeed MiG-31BM nr. 81.

The documentation links this work to a government contract awarded to NPK KBM for Burevestnik on December 1, 2015, and another one subsequently concluded between NPK KBM and RSK MiG on December 17, 2015. Therefore, it is in the same sequence of contracts that initiated work on the Burevestnik-KA-M satellites. However, RSK MiG’s involvement with Burevestnik began earlier than that. According to court documents (in Russian) published online late last year, NPK KBM and RSK MiG signed an initial contract for Burevestnik (described as “Burevestnik-MiG”) as early as January 23, 2012. This was presumably in the same chain of contracts that started work on the Burevestnik-M satellites and the “293” rocket back in 2011.

Burevestnik’s explosive payload

Other recently uncovered procurement documentation may provide conclusive evidence that the Burevestnik satellites are indeed ASAT interceptors. One contract (in Russian) for Burevestnik was signed in June 2017 between an organization called the Krasnoarmeysk Scientific Research Institute of Mechanization (KNIIM) and a company called OOO Expotekhvzryv. KNIIM is an institute in Krasnoarmeysk (a name derived from the Russian word for “Red Army”), which is situated about 60 kilometers northeast of Moscow. It is a leading manufacturer of ammunition and explosives, as can be seen in this profile of the institute.

Expotekhvzryv, based in Moscow, specializes in industrial safety control of “dangerous objects” (the word vzryv in the company’s name means “explosion”). Under the deal with KNIIM, it was to perform what was literally described as “industrial safety control of an experimental container for special products” and complete that work before the end of June 2017. According to the documentation, the work involved detonating the container to study the effects on its surroundings and on the container itself. The contract is clearly related to the Burevestnik-KA-M satellites because the documentation links the work to the December 2015 government contract that initiated that phase of the Burevestnik project and a subsequent one inked between CNIIHM and KNIIM on September 1, 2016.

The most logical interpretation of this information is that KNIIM developed some type of explosive charge for the Burevestnik satellites and that the tests conducted by Expotekhvzryv were needed to ensure that this material is safe for storage and transportation. While KNIIM seems to be the manufacturer of this payload, it should be noted that CNIIHM itself probably also has the necessary expertise in the field. Back in the 1960s and 1970s, a team at CNIIHM led by Kirill N. Shamshev devised two types of explosive charges that were carried by experimental interceptor satellites called IS (“Satellite Destroyer”). These were detonated when the satellites came in the vicinity of specially launched target satellites. According to its former website, CNIIHM has a “Center of Ammunition and Special Chemistry” and this may very well play a role in this work as well.

As is clear from several technical papers and patents, a number of Russian institutes (including CNIIHM) have also done research on non-destructive technology for co-orbital ASATs, mostly involving the use of finely dispersed particles that could presumably disable satellite sensors or cause other damage. Similar technology has also been studied to conceal satellites from potential enemy ASAT interceptors under a program known as Vual (see “Self-defense in space: protecting Russian spacecraft from ASAT attacks” , The Space Review, July 16, 2018). However, there are is no convincing proof that any of this work is connected to Burevestnik.

Possible on-orbit tests

It is perfectly possible that Burevestnik satellites have already been tested in orbit. Between 2013 and 2019, Russia launched six mysterious satellites from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome that showed similar in-orbit behavior and transmitted on identical radio frequencies, indicating they share a common platform. They were called Kosmos-2491, 2499, 2504, 2521, 2535, 2536, and 2543. All were launched as co-passengers with other payloads, the first three on the Rockot launch vehicle (now retired) and the later ones on the Soyuz-2.1v, the lightest rocket in the Soyuz launch vehicle family (without the first-stage strap-on boosters and carrying NK-33 engines inherited from the Soviet-era N-1 moon rocket.) All except the first one performed rendezvous and proximity operations with other objects launched on the same mission, either the rocket’s upper stage or other satellites.

Some of these satellites are likely part of a project called Nivelir, started in the same month as Burevestnik (September 2011) and also managed by CNIIHM. The Nivelir satellites are believed to be intended for on-orbit inspection of other satellites and are known to share at least two design features with the Burevestnik satellites, namely 4LI-20 lithium-ion batteries of PAO Saturn and MSKV84 fuel tanks of NIIMash, which likely feed K50-10.6 hydrazine monopropellant thrusters of OKB Fakel on both types of satellites. Because they seem to use a common bus, it is hard to tell which of the satellites belong to which program.

Two of the satellites (Kosmos-2521 and 2543) were deployed from larger “parent satellites” built by NPO Lavochkin (Kosmos-2519 and 2542). Having the military index 14F150, these are also part of the Nivelir project and themselves seem to be used for space situational awareness. Kosmos-2542 raised concern in US Defense Department circles earlier this year when it made several relatively close passes to the American reconnaissance satellite USA 245 in an apparent attempt to take detailed pictures of the satellite.

While most of the six satellites seem to have performed missions comparable to those of American and Chinese inspection satellites, two experiments conducted during these missions seem to have nothing to do with inspection. In October 2017, Kosmos-2521 itself deployed a small subsatellite (Kosmos-2523) that immediately lowered its perigee by 100 kilometers and has remained inert ever since without ever coming close to another satellite. Speaking to Time magazine last February, Gen. John Raymond, the commander of the U.S. Space Force, likened these satellites to Russian nesting dolls and described the subsatellite as a “high-speed projectile.” Possibly, Kosmos-2523 was another top-secret satellite of CNIIHM identified as Napryazheniye, the purpose of which is unclear.

Another puzzling event occurred last year during the mission of Kosmos-2535 and 2536, launched in July 2019 along with two other satellites (Kosmos-2537 and 2538) that are probably used for calibration of ground-based radars. About two weeks after launch, Kosmos-2535 and 2536 began a lengthy series of close encounters that continued until earlier this year. The first of those, in early August, was actually reported by the Russian Ministry of Defense, which described the two objects as an “inspection satellite” and a “registering satellite.” They were reportedly on a mission to study the effects of “artificial and natural space factors” on satellites and also to test technology to protect satellites and service them in orbit. More specifically, the equipment on the inspector satellite was designed to study the effects on the registering satellite of “space debris, electron and proton radiation of the Earth’s outer natural radiation belt, protons and heavy charged particles, solar and galactic cosmic rays.”

Then, in mid-October, objects labeled as “Kosmos-2535 debris” started gradually appearing in the catalog of space objects maintained by the United States Strategic Command. In all, 24 such objects were registered. The catalog does not disclose when exactly the satellite generated this debris, but orbital analysis has traced most of it back to a close encounter between Kosmos-2535 and 2536 in late September (which would mean the debris could have come from either satellite).

The debris wound up in widely scattered orbits with altitudes ranging from less than 400 to more than 1,000 kilometers, while the two satellites themselves have been circling the Earth in roughly circular orbits slightly over 600 kilometers above the Earth. This means it must have been created by some sort of energetic event. Both of the satellites did continue maneuvering afterwards, meaning that neither was rendered inoperable.

This could lead one to conclude that it was either a failed ASAT test or not an ASAT test at all. However, numerous other scenarios are possible as well, including one where the Russians elected to test an explosive charge without destroying the satellites in order to minimize the amount of debris and not attract undue attention to the mission. It could, for instance, have been ejected in a canister and detonated at a safe distance, with one or both of the satellites observing the event. It is also possible that one or both satellites carried protective material enabling them to survive the event and even sensors to detect possible impacts, like many of the target satellites used in the Soviet IS project. Such scenarios would still be in line with two of the mission objectives given in the official Russian statement on the mission, namely studying the effects of space debris and testing technology to protect satellites in orbit.

Future outlook

If Burevestnik has already been tested in orbit, it was launched as a co-passenger on a conventional ground-based rocket. However, this is likely to change in the future. As is clear from the evidence presented above, the satellites, the “293” rocket, and the MiG-31BM aircraft are part of one and the same project. Most likely, the air-launched “293” rocket will serve as a launch vehicle for future Burevestnik satellites. In Russian terminology, all these components would be described as belonging to the same “space complex,” a word used for the combination of the satellites, the launch vehicle, and all the ground-based infrastructure needed to support them. In some official documents, Burevestnik has been more specifically called “a space security complex,” a fitting term for an ASAT project (it has also been applied in one document to a project called Kalina, a ground-based laser system designed to blind or dazzle optical instruments of satellites). The index for the Burevestnik space complex is 14K168.

The idea that “293” is a satellite launch vehicle is corroborated by the fact that the index for one of its stages (14S47) is similar to that of some upper stages of space launch vehicles. Moreover, plans to use the MiG-31 as a satellite launch platform are not new. They were first put forward by the MiG design bureau in the late 1990s and culminated in a 2005 Russian/Kazakh proposal called Ishim to equip the aircraft with a three-stage solid-fuel rocket capable of placing 160-kilogram satellites into 300-kilometer orbits with a 46-degree inclination. With a maximum speed of Mach 2.8 and a service ceiling of more than 20 kilometers, the MiG-31 is an ideal platform for such missions.

With the Burevestnik satellites probably weighing around 100 kilograms or less, a rocket the size of “293” should be capable of placing them into orbit from a MiG-31, although potential targets would probably be limited to satellites in relatively low orbits, primarily reconnaissance satellites. The use of an air-launched rocket instead of a ground-based launch vehicle offers several advantages for ASAT missions. First, not being tied to a specific launch site, air-launched rockets can use a much broader variety of launch azimuths and, consequently, send satellites into a wide range of orbital inclinations. Second, they can be prepared for launch at short notice (certainly solid-fuel rockets like “293”) and away from the prying eyes of reconnaissance satellites, giving the enemy little warning time. By contrast, the Soyuz-2.1v, the lightest launch vehicle in Russia’s current rocket fleet, is a liquid-fuel launch vehicle that needs two days of launch preparations on a single available pad. In addition to that, the Soyuz-2.1v (with a payload capacity of 2.8 tons to low Earth orbit) would be far oversized for launching a single Burevestnik satellite. Both the “293” rocket and its apparent successor (“328”) could potentially also be used to launch other small military satellites on quick-response missions, a capability that the US military has been seeking for a long time without much success.

All this does raise the question why dedicated infrastructure for Burevestnik is being built at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. This infrastructure is identified in procurement documents as “Object 7511/4,” As can be inferred from recent procurement documents, a new contract for the construction work was awarded by the Ministry of Defense just last December, clearly showing it is not yet finished. One possible explanation is that Burevestnik flights using the MiG-31BM will be staged from Plesetsk’s airfield (known as “Pero”), benefiting from the cosmodrome’s infrastructure for storage and preparation of rockets and satellites. Another, much more remote possibility is that “293” has a two-stage air-launched version (consisting of the 14D813 and 14S47 stages) that can take off from a multitude of air bases and a three-stage ground-launched version (consisting of the 14D812, 14D813, and 14S47 stages) that will be based at Plesetsk. It is hard to tell whether the rocket seen in the photos taken at Zhukovsky has two or three stages. Similarly, America’s Pegasus air-launched rocket had a ground-based “sister rocket” (Taurus/Minotaur-C), which essentially consisted of a Pegasus mounted on top of the first stage of a Peacekeeper ICBM. However, there are no clear signs that any launch infrastructure for such a rocket is being built at Plesetsk.

Other ground-based infrastructure for Burevestnik, named “Object 7511/3,” is under construction near Pervomayskoye in the Tambov province, about 450 kilometers southeast of Moscow. This is the location of a military base (nr. 14272) primarily used for the long-term storage of rockets awaiting shipment to the launch site.

The control center for Burevestnik missions is likely situated right next to the headquarters of Russia’s space surveillance network in Noginsk-9 (also known as Dubrovo), a small town about 60 kilometers east of Moscow. Noginsk-9 was also home to the control center for the Soviet-era co-orbital ASAT missions. A facility in Noginsk-9 known as “Object 3006M” has been linked in building contracts to both Burevestnik and Nivelir. It will probably be fed with targeting data by a network of space surveillance radars and optical telescopes stationed across Russia. Autonomous satellite navigation equipment known to have been developed for Burevestnik satellites by MKB Kompas should also help guide the satellites to their targets relatively quickly. Even with 1970s technology, the Soviet-era IS interceptor satellites demonstrated the ability to reach their targets on the first orbit after launch.

All the construction work is a sign that Burevestnik is not merely seen as an experimental system, but one that Russia intends to place on operational stand-by. When that will occur is hard to tell. The Burevestnik project has been underway for almost a decade but, like many other Russian space projects, was probably hit hard by the Western-imposed sanctions that complicated the delivery of foreign-built electronic components for the Russian space industry. Despite Russia’s policy of “import substitution,” even highly classified Russian military satellites remain very reliant on Western electronics. This is illustrated by one 2016 contract for the delivery of electronic components for Burevestnik satellites, which listed a total of 457 foreign electronic components versus just 45 Russian-built components.

Still, it does look like one or more Burevestnik satellites have already been tested in space, with more such test flights (using the Soyuz-2.1v) possibly yet to come. As for the “293” rocket, the one seen in the September 2018 photos was presumably a mock-up, but one of the earlier quoted RKS MiG contracts signed in August 2019 strongly suggests that a “live” version is undergoing captive carry tests by now. A CNBC article published in September 2018 quoted “three sources with direct knowledge of a U.S. intelligence report” as saying that the MiG-31BM spotted shortly before was believed to be “a mock-up of an anti-satellite weapon that will be ready for warfare by 2022.”

Other Russian ASAT projects

As large in scope as Burevestnik appears to be, it is only one of several ASAT projects that Russia is currently working on. The most advanced of these is Nudol, a ground-launched direct-ascent ASAT missile built by OKB Novator that is believed to have made at least ten test flights from Plesetsk since 2014, without destroying targets in space. The latest of these took place on April 15, prompting an immediate response from the US Space Command’s Gen. John Raymond, who regards it as “further proof of Russia’s hypocritical advocacy of outer space arms control proposals designed to restrict the capabilities of the United States while clearly having no intention of halting their counterspace weapons programs.” Recently gathered evidence indicates that another, possibly more capable missile may be under development for Nudol at the Moscow-based MIT Corporation.

Other likely ASAT systems under development are ground-based and air-based systems to dazzle or blind satellite optical systems ( Kalina and Sokol-Eshelon ) and ground-based and space-based systems for electronic warfare (Tirada-2S and Ekipazh ). In November 2017, a Russian military official also disclosed the existence of a “mobile anti-satellite complex” called Rudolf, about which nothing is known. Another satellite under development at CNIIHM called Numizmat will probably carry a hard-to-detect ultrawide-band noise radar for proximity operations and may also have an ASAT-related role. An up-to-date overview of Russian ASAT systems is given in the latest edition of the Secure World Foundation’s annual report Global Counterspace Capabilities: An Open-Source Assessment .

The co-existence of several ASAT projects indicates they are designed to fulfill complementary roles, possibly targeting different types of satellites in different types of orbits. Similarly, in the 1980s the Soviet Union worked on a plethora of ASAT systems , each of which had its own well-defined tasks in various possible war scenarios. The collapse of the Soviet Union prevented any of those from reaching operational status, but by all indications Russia now once again has a sustained program to develop a broad range of counterspace capabilities, whatever the motives for that may be.

For more details on Burevestnik and a complete list of sources, see this thread on the NASA Spaceflight Forum , which is updated with new information as it becomes available.

Bart Hendrickx is a longtime observer of the Russian space program.

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Humans to Mars

Submitted by WA Contents

Centers of gravity, not black holes:experts discuss new moscow metro stations, united kingdom architecture news - jan 22, 2015 - 10:42   4582 views.

In 2015 Moscow will see a wide range of new capital transportation facilities, and their design is just as important. We asked four jury members of the recent design competition for metro stations Solntsevo and Novoperedelkino to tell us more about this aspect.

Erken Kagarov, Vice President of The Academy of the Graphic Design, art director of “Art. Lebedev Studio”:

“Being a designer, first of all I did my best to evaluate the visual aspect of the offered solutions. Besides that it was important for me to see something new and original. Otherwise, why bother organizing a competition?

As for the results of the contest, I am under the impression that we tried to get everything at once, and that was a mistake. The winning projects are quite expressive and not too expensive. Unfortunately, they are not at all ground-breaking. If we take a look at the history of Moscow metro and the work of one of its best creators, Alexey Dushkin, we’ll see that he was constantly inventing and reinventing certain techniques and materials: he was the first one to use stainless steel to decorate Mayakovskaya, he came up with the idea of columns lit from below for Kropotkinskaya, he put up stained-glass panels underground, where the sun doesn’t ever shine, on Novokuznetskaya...... Continue Reading

> via  archsovet.msk.ru

Rosatom Starts Life Tests of Third-Generation VVER-440 Nuclear Fuel

  • 16 June, 2020 / 13:00

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World Energy

Rosatom Starts Production of Rare-Earth Magnets for Wind Power Generation

TVEL Fuel Company of Rosatom has started gradual localization of rare-earth magnets manufacturing for wind power plants generators. The first sets of magnets have been manufactured and shipped to the customer.

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In total, the contract between Elemash Magnit LLC (an enterprise of TVEL Fuel Company of Rosatom in Elektrostal, Moscow region) and Red Wind B.V. (a joint venture of NovaWind JSC and the Dutch company Lagerwey) foresees manufacturing and supply over 200 sets of magnets. One set is designed to produce one power generator.

“The project includes gradual localization of magnets manufacturing in Russia, decreasing dependence on imports. We consider production of magnets as a promising sector for TVEL’s metallurgical business development. In this regard, our company does have the relevant research and technological expertise for creation of Russia’s first large-scale full cycle production of permanent rare-earth magnets,” commented Natalia Nikipelova, President of TVEL JSC.

“NovaWind, as the nuclear industry integrator for wind power projects, not only made-up an efficient supply chain, but also contributed to the development of inter-divisional cooperation and new expertise of Rosatom enterprises. TVEL has mastered a unique technology for the production of magnets for wind turbine generators. These technologies will be undoubtedly in demand in other areas as well,” noted Alexander Korchagin, Director General of NovaWind JSC.

For reference:

TVEL Fuel Company of Rosatom incorporates enterprises for the fabrication of nuclear fuel, conversion and enrichment of uranium, production of gas centrifuges, as well as research and design organizations. It is the only supplier of nuclear fuel for Russian nuclear power plants. TVEL Fuel Company of Rosatom provides nuclear fuel for 73 power reactors in 13 countries worldwide, research reactors in eight countries, as well as transport reactors of the Russian nuclear fleet. Every sixth power reactor in the world operates on fuel manufactured by TVEL. www.tvel.ru

NovaWind JSC is a division of Rosatom; its primary objective is to consolidate the State Corporation's efforts in advanced segments and technological platforms of the electric power sector. The company was founded in 2017. NovaWind consolidates all of the Rosatom’s wind energy assets – from design and construction to power engineering and operation of wind farms.

Overall, by 2023, enterprises operating under the management of NovaWind JSC, will install 1 GW of wind farms. http://novawind.ru

Elemash Magnit LLC is a subsidiary of Kovrov Mechanical Plant (an enterprise of the TVEL Fuel Company of Rosatom) and its main supplier of magnets for production of gas centrifuges. The company also produces magnets for other industries, in particular, for the automotive

industry. The production facilities of Elemash Magnit LLC are located in the city of Elektrostal, Moscow Region, at the site of Elemash Machine-Building Plant (a nuclear fuel fabrication facility of TVEL Fuel Company).

Rosatom is a global actor on the world’s nuclear technology market. Its leading edge stems from a number of competitive strengths, one of which is assets and competences at hand in all nuclear segments. Rosatom incorporates companies from all stages of the technological chain, such as uranium mining and enrichment, nuclear fuel fabrication, equipment manufacture and engineering, operation of nuclear power plants, and management of spent nuclear fuel and nuclear waste. Nowadays, Rosatom brings together about 350 enterprises and organizations with the workforce above 250 K. https://rosatom.ru/en/

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