“According to the estimates by the International Energy Agency, up to 30% of the planet’s energy is consumed by engineering systems of buildings and structures,” comments the faculty’s dean Andrey Nikitin. “The faculty’s research is aimed at decreasing the losses both in manufacturing and consumption of energy resources. Highly qualified specialists capable of developing energy-intensive building engineering systems and using energy-efficient technologies in their work will always be in demand on the labor market. Our graduates lead successful careers in the field of generation, transportation and use of energy resources, mainly in the field of heat-and-power engineering.”

Andrey Nikitin
Andrey Nikitin

All research conducted in the framework of Master’s studies at the Faculty of Cryogenic Engineering can be divided into four groups:

Life support systems

This subject area is covered by the program Heat-and-Mass Exchange Equipment Design

“The program has two specializations: Design of Heat and Mass Transfer Devices for Refrigeration Equipment and Pneumatics; and Life Support Systems in Buildings, Structures and Autonomous Objects,” explains Vladimir Pronin, head of the program and a member of the International Academy of Refrigeration. “The program has a corporate status: the first specialization has the research and manufacturing association Compressor as its industrial partner. The second specialization focuses on the matters of microclimate, without which it is impossible to build and use modern facilities. Both programs’ graduates are highly sought after on the labor market.”

The graduates can work in many fields – from space engineering to the agroindustrial sector. 

The main purpose of life support systems is to create a comfortable environment through maintaining microclimate parameters such as temperature, humidity, and air purity. Aleksandra Bazhanova graduated from the then Specialist’s program in 2006. Now, she works at the Department of Conditioning Systems at Mitsubishi Electric Russia.

Aleksandra Bazhanova
Aleksandra Bazhanova

“At my department, I oversee two regions: the Northwestern Federal District and the Far East. As trivial as it may sound, the most useful thing that the university gave me was knowledge. A university teaches you independence, organization skills, and the ability to quickly respond to changes, not only during stressful exam periods but also in the times of stability when the latter are over. This year marked the first time that the company hired an ITMO student to do an internship with us. The intern could try their hand both at the sales department and the technical department. This was needed in order to help them understand what area of activity they liked best and what they would like to develop in going forward. This is the only way to become a first-class specialist in your field – without drive, nothing is going to work out,” says Aleksandra Bazhanova. 

Refrigeration equipment

This area is explored by the programs Commercial Refrigerating Systems and Heat Pump Devices and Solid-State Cooling Systems

“Refrigeration technologies are used in practically all fields of human activity: the energy industry, agriculture, biology, mining, space, construction, transport,” says Alexander Baranenko, a professor at the faculty and a member of the International Academy of Refrigeration. “The key trend in low-temperature technology is increasing its energy efficiency and environmental safety. Scientists focus their efforts on these areas. Holding great interest for researchers are the new principles of cooling and increasing gas pressure, the use of renewable energy sources for cooling, the creation of sophisticated complexes for the simultaneous generation of heat, cold and electricity, and much more.”

The Solid-State Cooling Systems program is implemented in collaboration with St. Petersburg Electrotechnical University LETI, laboratories of the Ioffe Institute, and National University of Science and Technology MISiS (Moscow) and focuses on scientific research. 

Also close to this field is the Master’s program Automation of Technological Processes and Production in Food Industry. It trains specialists to find optimal solutions for the food production industry. The program knows no analogs in Russia. Its graduates are highly sought after in the bio-, refrigeration, energy, and transport industries. 

Alexander Baranenko
Alexander Baranenko

“Various international organizations prognosticate that the production and consumption of food products may experience an almost twofold increase by the middle of this century. This will lead to a similar increase in refrigeration capacities involved in the food industry, in the field of storage, distribution and sales of food,” adds Alexander Baranenko.

The field is undergoing active development, which means that the graduates will find it easy to find employment. 

“I decided to apply to Master’s studies in order to advance my competencies in the field of my professional specialization,” shares Maxim Poltoratsky, class of 2014. “My work was associated with the creation of new types of climate technology. The faculty staff was at the onset of the development of refrigeration and climate technology in Russia, so there were many people you could learn a lot from. Now I work as a chief designer at the Refrigeration Equipment Development Department of the organization NPK Morsvyazavtomatica.” 

This year, NPK Morsvyazavtomatica began its collaboration with ITMO University’s Faculty of Cryogenic Engineering. Some students have already completed their industrial training there. 

Cryogenic systems

Cryotherapy
Cryotherapy

Cryogenic technology is a field of thermal physics working with temperatures in the range of -80 to -273 degrees Celcius. Such a low temperature alters the properties of materials, sometimes bestowing them with unusual “superpowers”: among these are electrical superconductivity and superfluidity of helium.

“Cryogenic technology can be applied in all fields – from the tokamak superconducting magnets to the systems for cryotherapeutic treatment of serious diseases,” explains Alexander Baranov, a professor at the faculty and a member of International Academy of Refrigeration. “The main trend in modern research is the development of the field of production and consumption of compressed natural gas, including the development of Russian-made engineering to provide the existing and under-construction enterprises with cryogenic equipment. Also starting is the construction of cryogenic superconducting power lines, and there is an ongoing trend for the development of transport on a superconducting magnetic suspension.”

This sphere is explored by students of the Master’s program Compressed Natural Gas Technologies. Such specialists are needed in all fields related to cryogenic technologies – not just in the production of energy sources. 

Alexander Baranov
Alexander Baranov

Ivan Baranov, CEO of Krion and an ITMO Master’s graduate, shares his experience:

“I wanted to study cryogenic systems in particular, as they offer a lot of scope for development, and Russia has one of the strongest cryogenic schools. I was interested in cryotherapy equipment. They were created, and developed especially well, at ITMO University. Krion was founded by the graduates of ITMO’s Cryogenic Equipment Department in the ‘90s and now continues to actively collaborate with ITMO University. I got into the group of Master’s students who conducted their practical training at Krion, and afterwards decided to stay there. With each year that passes, it’s becoming more and more interesting and challenging. From time to time, I give presentations at international scientific conferences.”

Safety

A crucial aspect when developing any technical system is ensuring its safety. Specialists with such a skillset are trained at the programs Information Systems for Technosphere and Ecological Safety and Standardization and Metrology in High-Technology Sector of Economy

“Technologies for life and precise measurements as the basis of quality and safety is the main thesis providing insight into the essence of these programs,” says Marina Kustikova, an associate professor at the faculty. “Industrial and environmental safety constitute an integral part of sustainable development of a country, region, or city. The tasks faced by specialists in these fields will always be highly relevant and promising. That said, this development is driven by the introduction of cutting-edge measuring technologies and digital and IoT systems.”

The graduates can focus not only on the technologies’ safety but also the prevention and elimination of environmental damage.

Open Day for ITMO University’s Bachelor’s and Master’s programs in the subject area Refrigeration Industry and Food Biotechnologies
Open Day for ITMO University’s Bachelor’s and Master’s programs in the subject area Refrigeration Industry and Food Biotechnologies

Sharing insight into his work is Alexander Rogov, a Master’s graduate and executive director of an enterprise dealing in mercury-containing waste disposal:

“I enrolled in Master’s studies because I switched jobs and wanted to acquire professional education in the new field. I did my Bachelor’s studies at ITMO, in the field of physics and engineering. The Master’s program I was in had to do with environmental safety and my current job. The university gave me the essential knowledge for my professional growth. Some subjects offered an opportunity to work with other organizations in the field. For instance, I managed to establish useful contacts with the specialists from D. I. Mendeleev Institute for Metrology – these are very nice people who are interesting to work with. Our holding company Mercury deals with the disposal, collection, and deactivation of hazard class one and two substances. In the course of studies, it’s important to find a balance between your personal interests and acquiring knowledge. As one of my lecturers used to say, “A student is someone who searches for knowledge themselves.” And once you acquire knowledge, you have to search for its practical application.” 

A system’s safety also depends on whether it is controlled in the right way. The program Information Technologies in Thermal Physics trains specialists competent in the development of innovative principles for the operation of hi-tech devices. The program revolves around energy- and resource-efficient technologies, increasing the energy efficiency of buildings and structures, computer modeling and development of scientific methods for the creation of devices operating under complex environmental conditions, as well as thermostating and control of thermal processes. 

ITMO University’s School of Biotechnology and Cryogenic Systems Open Day for prospective Bachelor’s and Master’s students
ITMO University’s School of Biotechnology and Cryogenic Systems Open Day for prospective Bachelor’s and Master’s students

The program is implemented in collaboration with Al-Farabi Kazakh National University and provides its students with two diplomas upon graduation. All graduates have the opportunity to work in the field of their specialization. 

You can apply for these and other programs online by submitting your documents via your account on ITMO Admissions. Detailed application guide can be found here. If you have any questions about the application process, you can ask them in the VK community of ITMO Master’s studies or contact ITMO University’s International Students Learning and Support Center at int.students@itmo.ru

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