Foundation of Tomsk Technological Institute
On April 29, 1896 (May 11, 1896, by the Gregorian calendar), Emperor Nicholas II signed a Decree on the Foundation of a Technological Institute of Practical Engineers in Tomsk with two departments: Mechanical and Chemical. It was the first technical institute east of the Urals remaining the only technical institute on the vast territory of Russian Asia-Pacific for a long time.
Opening Ceremony of TTI
The festive opening ceremony of TTI was held on December 6, 1900 (December 18, 1900, by the Gregorian calendar). It was timed to coincide with the name day of Nicholas II. The festivities lasted 2 days and students were excused from attending classes.
Issuing Volume 1 of TTI Bulletin
Volume 1 was called Bulletin of Tomsk Technological Institute of Emperor Nicholas II. The bulletin was issued in separate books, consisting of two sections. Research articles and monographs of TTI professors were published in section one, report materials describing the study and research at the institute were published in section two. The release of the bulletin marked the beginning of one of the oldest scientific journals of technical knowledge in Siberia and the Far East.
First TTI Engineering Graduates
The first TTI graduation was small and consisted of as little as 16 engineers in total, including 15 mechanical engineers and a chemical engineer, Vladimir Vanyukov. Six of the graduates were admitted to a postgraduate course at the institute. Others pursued practical work holding jobs in railways, gold, coal and copper mines, various factories and plants, navigable waterways, as well as at municipal institutions and county councils. Most of the TTI graduates stayed to work in Siberia.
Opening of TTI Aero Club
The first aero club in Siberia, second in Russia (earlier an aero club was established in Moscow under the supervision of Nikolay Zhukovsky) was opened on the initiative of Boris Weinberg at TTI. The club united enthusiasts, including students and institute professors. They studied the theory of aeronautics, flew kites and dreamed to create their own aircraft.
Creation of Airless Experimental Road at TTI
Professor Boris Weinberg created an airless experimental road on an air-cushion, being half a century ahead of the research works of scientists from the USA and Japan in this field. This outstanding invention was based on the theory of Weinberg, set forth in his Motion without Friction work. A group of American filmmakers purposely visited the TTI Physical Department in 1914 and shot a Siberian Wonder film about Professor Boris Weinberg and his phenomenal trackless train.
Renaming Institute into Siberian Tomsk Technological Institute
The change of the political system in Russia took place in 1917 and led to the reform of higher education. The changes affected certain aspects of the institute operation: it lost the title of Emperor Nicholas II and changed its coat of arms, the departments were renamed into faculties. The position of Director was renamed into Rector, as well as new positions of Vice-Rectors, Associate Professors and Assistants were introduced. The rules of student admission also changed, and higher education institutions opened their doors to women for the first time.
Creation of TTI Scientific Research Institute of Applied Physics
The first Siberian Scientific Research Institute of Applied Physics, future Siberian Physical-Technical Institute was established on the initiative of Boris Weinberg at TTI. Professor Igor Sokolov became the Director of the Institute. The Institute of Applied Physics united Tomsk physicists and specialists in the field of the strength of materials and metallography. When the institute was established, it was aimed at playing an important role in a scientific support of Siberian industrialization planning and direct resolution of physical and technical problems put forward by the goals of Siberian industry.
Renaming into Siberian Technological Institute
The institute received the name of Siberian Technological Institute (STI). It continued to develop as an applied engineering technical institute aimed to serve the needs of the industrialization of Russia and Siberia. In October 1926, the institute was named after Felix Dzerzhinsky, Head of the Supreme Soviet of the National Economy.
Eleven Independent Institutes established within STI
Siberian Technological Institute was subdivided into a number of independent industrial educational institutions: Siberian Geological Prospecting Institute (Tomsk), Siberian Mining Institute (Tomsk), Siberian Mechanical Engineering Institute (Tomsk), West Siberian Institute of Agricultural Engineering (Novosibirsk), Siberian Chemical Engineering Institute (Tomsk), Siberian Construction Institute (Novosibirsk), Flour Milling and Elevating Institute (Tomsk), Institutes of Rail Transport Engineers (Novosibirsk, Tomsk), Siberian Institute of Ferrous Metals (Stalinsk) and Institute of Non-Ferrous Metals (Irkutsk). New institutes received credits, premises, laboratories, inventory and dormitories. The newly created institutes were designed to train comprehensive engineers.
Consolidation and Renaming into Tomsk Industrial Institute Named after S. M. Kirov
Siberian Geological Prospecting Institute, Siberian Mechanical Engineering Institute and Siberian Chemical Engineering Institute consolidated into Tomsk Industrial Institute. It began to work on July 1, 1934, consisting of six faculties: General Technological, Geological Prospecting, Mining, Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering and Power Engineering. The training was conducted by 36 academic departments in 20 majors.
Order of the Red Banner of Labour Awarded to Institute
For a tremendous contribution to training highly qualified specialists for the country, Tomsk Industrial Institute was awarded with the Order of the Red Banner of Labour by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR.
Renaming into Tomsk Polytechnic Institute
Tomsk Industrial Institute was renamed into polytechnic and further called Tomsk Polytechnic Institute of Labour Red Banner named after S. M. Kirov. TPI began to train radio engineers, nuclear physicists and a number of other specialists.
Creation of Betatron
TPI scientists led by the Rector Alexander Vorobyov created a betatron, an induction accelerator for electrons. The first operating Russian betatron was of 4 MeV. The development of betatrons with higher energies and radiation dose rates has started immediately beginning with the development of a 15 MeV betatron and setting up a laboratory for betatron production for Russian higher education institutions. These accelerators were used for research on the use of betatrons in medicine and non-destructive testing of industrial products.
Opening of Tomsk Television Center
Under the supervision of the Rector Alexander Vorobyov, the first Tomsk Television Center was opened in Siberia. The equipment for the television center was manufactured in the TPI Physical Department building in 1952-1955 with an active participation of the institute staff, including Veniamin Borisov, Fyodor Volkov and Alexander Eliseev. The regular television broadcasting started in Tomsk in 1955. It was a gift from TPI engineers to Tomsk citizens for the International Labour Day on May 1.
Physical Start-up of Sirius Synchrotron with 1.5 GeV Energy Carried out
The Sirius synchrotron (Siberian resonant pulse accelerator), an accelerator for electrons, was created by TPI scientists in the 1960s. The first experiments with the Sirius synchrotron were focused the problems of accelerating particles dynamics. Later, they were followed by measurements of synchrotron radiation characteristics and works on backscattering of laser radiation photons by an electron flux in the synchrotron.
Launch of IRT-1000 Research Nuclear Reactor
The decision to construct the first and only reactor in Siberia was made on the initiative of the TPI Rector Alexander Vorobyov and the Director of Scientific Research Institute of Nuclear Physics Ivan Chuchalin. Nowadays, it is the only operating research nuclear reactor in the Russian Federation. It is used to conduct research related to fundamental and applied research and development, the development of an isotope production technology for medical and other purposes etc. Besides, it provides training, professional development and advanced training for the staff working in the field of nuclear power.
Awarding Institute with the Order of the October Revolution
In connection with the 75th anniversary of TPI foundation, it was one of the first in the country to be awarded with the Order of the October Revolution for its success in training engineers. In accordance with the ranking of the Ministry of Higher Education of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (RSFSR), it ranked top 3 polytechnic institutes of Russia (together with Leningrad Polytechnic Institute and Ural Polytechnic Institute).
TPI at Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy
TPI was the first technical institute of the RSFSR that was granted the right to showcase its achievements in the Enlightenment Pavilion at the Exhibition of Achievements of the National Economy.
Creating Memorial in Honor of 166th Rifle Division Soldiers
In 1977, TPI students went to the battlefields in Smolensk region of the 166th Rifle Division, which was formed in Tomsk in 1939. At the same time, the collection of materials for a museum exhibition dedicated to the Division was initiated. Two rooms in a rural house of culture were allocated for the museum, where the exhibition narrating the military history of the 166th Rifle Division and partisans of Vadinsky District was held.
Establishment of TPI History Museum
The museum was established in accordance with the order of TPI Rector Ivan Chuchalin to commemorate the 90th anniversary of foundation of TTI of Emperor Nicholas II. The first museum exhibition was created by the efforts of the academic department of History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and was located in office 314 of the main building.
Reorganization into Tomsk Polytechnic University
Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) was the only technical university in Russia reorganized by the Special Order of the Government that gave it significant advantages and a new impetus for development. The transition to a new status predetermined new goals of the university and, above all, a substantial increase in student training quality.
Becoming Particularly Valuable Object of Russian National Heritage of the Peoples of the Russian Federation
The decree of the President of the Russian Federation No. 275 on the inclusion of TPU in the State Code of Particularly Valuable Objects of Cultural Heritage of the Peoples of the Russian Federation was adopted on April 2, 1997. By that time, a little more than 70 institutions and organizations had been listed in the State Code of Particularly Valuable Objects of Cultural Heritage of the Peoples of the Russian Federation, including five universities. Tomsk Polytechnic University became the sixth one. The university received not only a high and honourable status but also a significant advantage in obtaining funds from the state budget.
Elite Technical Education System Established at TPU
The system of elite technical education (ETO) was designed and introduced for the most talented and motivated students. The TPU ETO program is an additional educational program that is pursued simultaneously with a general learning pathway of a bachelor`s or master`s degree student.
National Research University Status Conferred to TPU
TPU was listed among 12 winning universities (the only technical university in Asian Russia) in a competition of university development programs. It was the first university in Tomsk to be conferred with the National Research University status.