Tagged: Fermilab Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • richardmitnick 2:42 pm on October 20, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Fermilab, , ,   

    From FNAL: “New high-speed transatlantic network to benefit science collaborations across the U.S.” 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Monday, Oct. 20, 2014

    Karen McNulty-Walsh, Brookhaven Media and Communications Office, kmcnulty@bnl.gov, 631-344-8350
    Kurt Riesselmann, Fermilab Office of Communication, media@fnal.gov, 630-840-3351
    Jon Bashor, Computing Sciences Communications Manager, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, jbashor@lbnl.gov, 510-486-5849

    Scientists across the United States will soon have access to new, ultra-high-speed network links spanning the Atlantic Ocean thanks to a project currently under way to extend ESnet (the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Sciences Network) to Amsterdam, Geneva and London. Although the project is designed to benefit data-intensive science throughout the U.S. national laboratory complex, heaviest users of the new links will be particle physicists conducting research at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world’s largest and most powerful particle collider. The high capacity of this new connection will provide U.S. scientists with enhanced access to data at the LHC and other European-based experiments by accelerating the exchange of data sets between institutions in the United States and computing facilities in Europe.

    esnet

    DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory—the primary computing centers for U.S. collaborators on the LHC’s ATLAS and CMS experiments, respectively—will make immediate use of the new network infrastructure once it is rigorously tested and commissioned. Because ESnet, based at DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, interconnects all national laboratories and a number of university-based projects in the United States, tens of thousands of researchers from all disciplines will benefit as well.

    CERN LHC Map
    CERN LHC Grand Tunnel
    CERN LHC particles
    LHC at CERN

    CERN ATLAS New
    ATLAS at the LHC

    CERN CMS New
    CMS at CERN

    BNL Campus
    Brookhaven Lab

    The ESnet extension will be in place before the LHC at CERN in Switzerland—currently shut down for maintenance and upgrades—is up and running again in the spring of 2015. Because the accelerator will be colliding protons at much higher energy, the data output from the detectors will expand considerably—to approximately 40 petabytes of raw data per year compared with 20 petabytes for all of the previous lower-energy collisions produced over the three years of the LHC first run between 2010 and 2012.

    The cross-Atlantic connectivity during the first successful run for the LHC experiments, which culminated in the discovery of the Higgs boson, was provided by the US LHCNet network, managed by the California Institute of Technology. In recent years, major research and education networks around the world—including ESnet, Internet2, California’s CENIC, and European networks such as DANTE, SURFnet and NORDUnet—have increased their backbone capacity by a factor of 10, using sophisticated new optical networking and digital signal processing technologies. Until recently, however, higher-speed links were not deployed for production purposes across the Atlantic Ocean—creating a network “impedance mismatch” that can harm large, intercontinental data flows.

    An evolving data model

    This upgrade coincides with a shift in the data model for LHC science. Previously, data moved in a more predictable and hierarchical pattern strongly influenced by geographical proximity, but network upgrades around the world have now made it possible for data to be fetched and exchanged more flexibly and dynamically. This change enables faster science outcomes and more efficient use of storage and computational power, but it requires networks around the world to perform flawlessly together.

    “Having the new infrastructure in place will meet the increased need for dealing with LHC data and provide more agile access to that data in a much more dynamic fashion than LHC collaborators have had in the past,” said physicist Michael Ernst of DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, a key member of the team laying out the new and more flexible framework for exchanging data between the Worldwide LHC Computing Grid centers.

    Ernst directs a computing facility at Brookhaven Lab that was originally set up as a central hub for U.S. collaborators on the LHC’s ATLAS experiment. A similar facility at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory has played this role for the LHC’s U.S. collaborators on the CMS experiment. These computing resources, dubbed Tier 1 centers, have direct links to the LHC at the European laboratory CERN (Tier 0). The experts who run them will continue to serve scientists under the new structure. But instead of serving as hubs for data storage and distribution only among U.S.-based collaborators at Tier 2 and 3 research centers, the dedicated facilities at Brookhaven and Fermilab will be able to serve data needs of the entire ATLAS and CMS collaborations throughout the world. And likewise, U.S. Tier 2 and Tier 3 research centers will have higher-speed access to Tier 1 and Tier 2 centers in Europe.

    “This new infrastructure will offer LHC researchers at laboratories and universities around the world faster access to important data,” said Fermilab’s Lothar Bauerdick, head of software and computing for the U.S. CMS group. “As the LHC experiments continue to produce exciting results, this important upgrade will let collaborators see and analyze those results better than ever before.”

    Ernst added, “As centralized hubs for handling LHC data, our reliability, performance and expertise have been in demand by the whole collaboration, and now we will be better able to serve the scientists’ needs.”

    An investment in science

    ESnet is funded by DOE’s Office of Science to meet networking needs of DOE labs and science projects. The transatlantic extension represents a financial collaboration, with partial support coming from DOE’s Office of High Energy Physics (HEP) for the next three years. Although LHC scientists will get a dedicated portion of the new network once it is in place, all science programs that make use of ESnet will now have access to faster network links for their data transfers.

    “We are eagerly awaiting the start of commissioning for the new infrastructure,” said Oliver Gutsche, Fermilab scientist and member of the CMS Offline and Computing Management Board. “After the Higgs discovery, the next big LHC milestones will come in 2015, and this network will be indispensable for the success of the LHC Run 2 physics program.”

    This work was supported by the DOE Office of Science.

    The DOE Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 2:05 pm on October 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Fermilab, , ,   

    From FNAL- “Frontier Science Result: CMS Off the beaten path” 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Friday, Oct. 17, 2014
    Jim Pivarski

    The main concern for most searches for rare phenomena is to control the backgrounds. Backgrounds are observations that resemble the one of interest, yet aren’t. For instance, fool’s gold is a background for gold prospectors. The main reason that the Higgs boson was hard to find is that most Higgs decays resemble b quark pair production, which is a million times more common. You not only have to find the one-in-a-million event picture, you have to identify some feature of it to prove that it is not an ordinary event.

    This is particularly hard to do in proton collisions because protons break apart in messy ways — the quarks from the proton that missed each other generate a spray of particles that fly off just about everywhere. Look through a billion or a trillion of these splatter events and you can find one that resembles the pattern of new physics that you’re looking for. Physicists have many techniques for filtering out these backgrounds — requiring missing momentum from an invisible particle, high energy perpendicular to the beam, a resonance at a single energy, and the presence of electrons and muons are just a few.

    nu
    Most particles produced by proton collisions originate in the point where the beams cross. Those that do not are due to intermediate particles that travel some distance before they decay

    A less common yet powerful technique for eliminating backgrounds is to look for displaced particle trajectories, meaning trajectories that don’t intersect the collision point. Particles that are directly created by the proton collision or are created by short-lived intermediates always emerge from this point. Those that emerge from some other point in space must be due to a long-lived intermediate.

    A common example of this is the b quark, which can live as long as a trillionth of a second before decaying into visible particles. That might not sound like very long, but the quark is traveling so quickly that it covers several millimeters in that trillionth of a second, which is a measurable difference.

    In a recent analysis, CMS scientists searched for displaced electrons and muons. Displaced tracks are rare, and electrons and muons are also rare, so displaced electrons and muons should be extremely rare. The only problem with this logic is that b quarks sometimes produce electrons and muons, so one other feature is needed to disambiguate. A b quark almost always produces a jet of particles, so this search for new physics also required that the electrons and muons were not close to jets.

    CERN CMS New
    CERN CMS

    With these simple selection criteria, the experimenters found only as many events as would be expected from standard physics. Therefore, it constrains any theory that predicts displaced electrons and muons. One of these is “displaced supersymmetry,” which generalizes the usual supersymmetry scenario by allowing the longest-lived supersymmetric particle to decay on the millimeter scale that this analysis tests. Displaced supersymmetry was introduced as a way that supersymmetry might exist yet be missed by most other analyses. Experiments like this one illuminate the dark corners in which supersymmetry might be hiding.

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 2:52 pm on October 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Fermilab, , , ,   

    From LC Newsline: “Full ILC-type cryomodule makes the grade” 

    Linear Collider Collaboration header
    Linear Collider Collaboration

    16 October 2014
    Joykrit Mitra

    For the first time, the ILC gradient specification of 31.5 megavolts per metre has been achieved on average across all of the eight cavities assembled in an ILC-type cryomodule. A team at Fermilab reached the milestone earlier this month. It is an achievement for scientists, engineers and technicians at Fermilab and Jefferson Lab in Virginia as well as their domestic and international partners in superconducting radio-frequency (SRF) technologies.

    The cryomodule, called CM2, was developed and assembled to advance superconducting radio-frequency technology and infrastructure at Americas-region laboratories. The CM2 milestone achievement has been nearly a decade in the making, since US scientists started participating in ILC research and development in 2006.

    cryo
    CM2 cryomodule being assembled at Fermilab’s Industrial Center Building (2011). Photo: Reidar Hahn

    “We’ve reached this important milestone and it was a long time coming,” said Elvin Harms, who leads the cryomodule testing programme at Fermilab. “It’s the first time in the world this has been achieved.”

    An accelerating gradient is a measure of how much of an energy boost particle bunches receive as they zip through an accelerator. Cavities with higher gradients boost particle bunches to higher energies over shorter distances. In an operational ILC, all 16,000 of its cavities would be housed in cryomodules, which would keep the cavities cool when operating at a temperature of 2 kelvins. While cavities can achieve high gradients as standalones, when they are assembled together in a cryomodule unit, the average gradient drops significantly.

    The road to the 31.5 MV/m milestone has been a long and arduous one. Between 2008 and 2010, all of the eight cavities in CM2 had individually been pushed to gradients above 35 MV/m at Jefferson Lab in tests in which the cavities were electropolished and vertically oriented. They were among 60 cavities evaluated globally for the prospects of reaching the ILC gradient. This evaluation was known as the S0 Global Design Effort. It was a build-up to the S1-Global Experiment, which put to the test the possibility of reaching 31.5 MV/m across an entire cryomodule. The final assembly of the S1 cryomodule setup took place at KEK in Japan, between 2010 and 2011. In S1, seven nine-cell 1.3-gigahertz niobium cavities strung together inside a cryomodule achieved an average gradient of 26 MV/m. An ILC-type cryomodule consists of eight such cavities.

    cm2
    CM2 in its home at Fermilab’s NML building, as part of the future Advanced Superconducting Test Accelerator. Photo: Reidar Hahn

    But the ILC community has taken big strides since then. Americas region teams acquired significant expertise in increasing cavity gradients: all CM2 cavities were vertically tested in the United States, initially at Jefferson Lab, and were subjected to additional horizontal tests at Fermilab. Further, cavities manufactured by private vendors in the United States have improved in quality: three of the eight cavities that make up the CM2 cryomodule were fabricated locally.

    Hands-on experience played a major role in improving the overall CM2 gradient. In 2007, a kit for Fermilab’s Cryomodule 1, or CM1, arrived from DESY, and by 2010, when CM1 was operational, the workforce had adopted a production mentality, which was crucial for the work they did on CM2.

    “I would like to congratulate my Fermilab colleagues for their persistence in carrying out this important work and for the quality of their work, which is extremely high,” said the SRF Institute at Jefferson Lab’s Rongli Geng, who led the ILC high-gradient cavity project there from 2007 to 2012. “We are glad to be able to contribute to this success.”

    But achieving the gradient is only the first step, Harms said. “There is still a lot of work left to be done. We need to look at CM2’s longer term performance. And we need to evaluate it thoroughly.”

    Among other tasks, the CM2 group will gently push the gradients higher to determine the limits of the technology and continue to understand and refine it. They plan to power and check the magnet—manufactured at Fermilab— that will be used to focus the particle beam passing through the cryomodule. Also in the works is a plan to study the rate at which the CM2 can be cooled down to 2 kelvins and warmed up again. Finally, they expect to send an actual electron beam through CM2 in 2015 to understand better how the beam and cryomodule respond in that setup.

    Scientists at Fermilab also expect that CM2 will be used in the Advanced Superconducting Test Accelerator currently under construction at Fermilab’s NML building, where CM2 is housed. The SRF technology developed for CM2 also has applications for light source instruments such as LCLS-II at SLAC in the United States and DESY’s XFEL.

    And it’s definitely a viable option for a future machine like the ILC.

    See the full article here.

    The Linear Collider Collaboration is an organisation that brings the two most likely candidates, the Compact Linear Collider Study (CLIC) and the International Liner Collider (ILC), together under one roof. Headed by former LHC Project Manager Lyn Evans, it strives to coordinate the research and development work that is being done for accelerators and detectors around the world and to take the project linear collider to the next step: a decision that it will be built, and where.

    Some 2000 scientists – particle physicists, accelerator physicists, engineers – are involved in the ILC or in CLIC, and often in both projects. They work on state-of-the-art detector technologies, new acceleration techniques, the civil engineering aspect of building a straight tunnel of at least 30 kilometres in length, a reliable cost estimate and many more aspects that projects of this scale require. The Linear Collider Collaboration ensures that synergies between the two friendly competitors are used to the maximum.

    Linear Collider Colaboration Banner

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 10:39 am on October 15, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Fermilab   

    From FNAL: “From the Center for Particle Astrophysics – Big eyes” 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Wednesday, Oct. 15, 2014

    ch
    Craig Hogan, head of the Center for Particle Astrophysics, wrote this column.

    To create small things you need particles with lots of energy, and to learn about them you need to capture and study lots of particles. So it is not surprising that the worldwide physics community is in the business of building giant accelerators and detectors..

    We also find out about new physics without using accelerators by studying the biggest system of all — the cosmos. Such experiments also need big detectors, in particular, giant cameras to make deep, wide-field maps of cosmic structure. For example, Fermilab’s Dark Energy Camera (DECam) is now collecting data for the Dark Energy Survey, using light from distant galaxies gathered by the 4-meter Blanco telescope on Cerro Tololo in Chile. Designed for depth, speed, sensitivity and scientific precision, it’s a behemoth compared to the camera in your phone. By the time you add up all the parts — the detectors, the lenses, the cooling systems, the electronics and the structure to hold them precisely in place 50 feet up in the telescope beam — you have a machine that weighs about 10 tons. That may not seem very big compared to the Tevatron or the thousand-ton telescope the camera is mounted on, but it’s a lot for a digital camera — the biggest ever built.

    CTIO Victor M Blanco 4m Telescope
    CTIO Victor M Blanco 4m Telescope interior
    CTIO Victor M Blanco 4 meter telescope

    DECam
    DECam

    FNALTevatron
    Tevatron

    The giant telescope simulator used to test DECam has recently been removed from the Fermilab building where the camera was put together. In the same space, another giant camera will soon start to take shape. This one will study the cosmic microwave background — the primordial light from the big bang. That light has been cooled by the cosmic expansion to microwave wavelengths, so the camera detectors and even its lenses must be cold to match. About 15,000 advanced superconducting detectors from Argonne National Laboratory will be integrated into a camera system about as big as DECam and then shipped for an experiment to take place under the thin, cold, crystalline skies at the South Pole.

    Cosmic Background Radiation Planck
    CMB from ESA/Planck

    ESA Planck
    ESA Planck schematic
    ESA/Planck

    This machine — the SPT-3G camera — will also be the largest of its kind ever built. When it is finished, it will be installed on the South Pole Telescope, where it will map the faint ripples of polarization imprinted on the light since it was created almost 14 billion years ago.

    South Pole Telescope
    South Pole Telescope

    The SPT-3G experiment will advance cosmic mapping by an order of magnitude, but it is also a stepping stone along a path to an even larger Stage 4 CMB project in the following decade. That project, endorsed by the P5 report and supported by a nationwide collaboration of labs and university groups now forming, will carry out a comprehensive survey of the primordial radiation over much of the sky and teach us about new physics ranging from neutrino masses to dark energy.

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 9:30 am on October 13, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Fermilab,   

    From FNAL: “Fermilab hosts international workshop on neutrino beams” 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Monday, Oct. 13, 2014
    Rich Blaustein

    team
    Fermilab recently hosted scientists from all over the world for a workshop on neutrino beams and instrumentation. Photo: Reidar Hahn

    From Sept. 23-26, Fermilab hosted the Ninth International Workshop on Neutrino Beams and Instrumentation (NBI 2014). Fermilab’s Alberto Marchionni, neutrino physicist in the Accelerator Division, and Bob Zwaska, accelerator physicist in the Accelerator Physics Center, co-chaired NBI 2014. Marchionni and Zwaska said the conference was a big success, with discussions chiefly concerning target materials, facility designs with increased neutrino beam power, safety and international cooperation — all with a heavy focus on long-baseline experiments.

    The workshop series was initiated in 1999 when Japanese scientists, who had just started their neutrino beam for the world’s first long-baseline experiment, sought international input. Participants from other countries understood the value of the workshop and supported its continuation.

    “When you start designing a beamline, you present at this gathering,” Marchionni said.

    He provided an example of earlier NBI discussions on Fermilab’s NuMI neutrino beamline informing the subsequent J-PARC (Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex) neutrino beamline design.

    Zwaska added that the workshop is especially relevant to Fermilab.

    “Whether with neutrino oscillation experiments — the long-baseline ones, the short-baseline ones — or scattering experiments, neutrino experimentation is central to what Fermilab does,” Zwaska said. “The exchange of information at the workshop is the most efficient way to enhance our skills to conduct these experiments and build neutrino beamlines. There is no book for how to make these beams.”

    A good part of NBI 2014 focused on operations, including safety. Zwaska said that, just like other scientific operations, neutrino beam facilities age, and that access, upkeep and repair of critical components of neutrino beamline systems was an important focus at the workshop.

    Participants also discussed the near- and long-term future, in which beamlines will operate at higher power levels and eventually at megawatt intensities, as in the case of the proposed Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility being developed at Fermilab.

    “We are ready to face the challenge in 2015, when we have to go significantly beyond the power we achieved with NuMI this past year of 360 kilowatts,” Marchionni said, referring to recent improvements to the Fermilab accelerator complex. This will be very auspicious for particle physics, he explained, because Fermilab’s NOvA experiment, matched with data from the other neutrino experiments, will begin to address pressing questions about our universe, such as its matter-antimatter imbalance.

    Like previous NBIs, the importance of international cooperation was underscored at the workshop. Marchionni said international cooperation will be even more important for the higher power operations of the future.

    “The neutrino beam is really a part of the physics of the experiment,” Marchionni said. “In part, because of differing viewpoints like those you find at NBIs, you come up with the best solutions in experiments that have international participation. The same is true for the neutrino beam.”

    The next NBI workshop will take place in Japan in 2016.

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 2:04 pm on October 2, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Fermilab, , ,   

    From Don Lincoln in Scientific American: “Particle Physics Informs the Ultimate Questions” 

    Scientific American

    Scientific American

    October 1, 2014
    Don Lincoln
    FNAL Don Lincoln
    Dr. Don Lincoln

    Editor’s Note: Author and Fermilab Senior Scientist Don Lincoln is set to teach “Mysteries of the Universe” from October 13 – 24 for Scientific American’s Professional Learning Program. We recently talked with Dr. Lincoln about why he became a physicist and his motivations to share what he discovers.

    When I was a young boy, I was insatiably curious. I must have driven my parents crazy with my incessant questions about why kittens had fur and why the moon was so much dimmer than the sun. I wanted to know the answer to everything. I still do.

    As I grew older, I began to see a pattern. While the answer to the kitten question might have started with biology and the answer to the moon question involved a combination of gravity, fusion and surface reflectivity, these weren’t the final answers. These interim answers led to new questions, which predictably led to atoms, then electrons and nuclei, to protons and neutrons. It became increasingly clear that what I really wanted to know was what [Albert] Einstein poetically called “God’s thoughts.” No matter your opinion on religion, the meaning of the phrase is clear: I wanted to know nothing less than the ultimate building blocks of the universe and the rules that bind them together. I wanted to know why the world was the way it was.

    As I matured intellectually, I came to realize that I wasn’t the first to ask these questions; indeed, they are among the oldest and grandest questions of all. For millennia, they were debated within the confines of philosophy and religion, but this began to change in the mid-1500s as the modern scientific method was being developed. Empirical testing replaced pure logic as the ultimate arbiter of ideas, leading to the approach still followed today.

    The Large Hadron Collider at the CERN laboratory is the world’s highest energy particle accelerator, a title that it is expected to hold for at least the next two decades. In this facility, scientists collide protons together at nearly the speed of light, generating temperatures at which the very idea of matter becomes hazy. Matter and energy convert back and forth, allowing physicists to gain new insights into the birth of the universe.

    CERN LHC Map
    CERN LHC Grand Tunnel
    CERN LHC particles
    LHC at CERN

    For those of us interested in the ultimate questions of the universe, there are really only two fields of interest: cosmology and particle physics. Cosmology deals with the universe as a whole: its birth, evolution and even its death. There is nothing small about cosmology. Particle physics, on the other hand, is concerned with the tiniest objects, the ultimate building blocks of the cosmos, usually studied by smashing two subatomic particles together at prodigious energies.

    These two realms—the grandness of the heavens for as far as we can see with our biggest telescopes and objects so unimaginably tiny that we needed to invent an entirely new form of physics to describe them—are intricately intertwined and the fact that we know this is one of the crowning triumphs of modern physics. Through centuries of effort, we now believe that the universe began about 14 billion years ago, in an awe-inspiring explosion that we call the Big Bang. At the moment of creation, the cosmos was much denser and hotter, with matter bathed in energies comparable to those achievable by modern particle accelerators.

    Using detectors weighing thousands of tons, particle physicists can record the behavior of matter at unprecedented energies and explore the environment last common at the very moment of creation. It was by studying collisions like the one shown here that scientists came to believe that they had discovered the Higgs boson.

    In essence, using a device like the Large Hadron Collider, we can create the conditions of the universe just fractions of a second after the Big Bang.

    While I’d love to know the answers to the ultimate questions of creation, these answers still elude us. So I elected to do the next best thing. I became a scientist and joined a multi-generational journey of discovery. It was through centuries of effort by curious men and women that we have come to our current understanding of the cosmos. In turn, my contemporaries and I are working to add to that long tradition, to write our own page in the book of knowledge, a book whose first pages were penned thousands of years ago. While it is unlikely any of us currently alive will see the final answer, for our brief time on Earth, we will follow the path laid out for us by the scientific greats of the past and point the way for those who come after. We must be satisfied by the wisdom that fulfillment is not about the destination, but in the way that we travel.

    Like many of my colleagues, I have joined the effort to use the Large Hadron Collider, located at the CERN laboratory in Europe, to better understand the behavior of matter under extreme conditions. The temperatures and pressures generated at the LHC haven’t been common since about a tenth of a trillionth of a second after the universe began. We’ve come a long way since our forebears stared at the stars under a clear and moonless sky and wondered. Being part of this community is how I’ve always wanted to live my life. As kids say nowadays, I am living the dream.

    However, for all of the successes of science, you should not think that we’ve understood everything. Far from it. There are many questions for which we don’t know the answer. For instance, we know that ordinary matter makes up only about 4 percent of the matter and energy in the universe. We don’t understand why our universe is made of matter, when we make matter and antimatter in equal quantities. While our current understanding would awe the best scientific minds of a century ago, there are certainly plenty of mysteries left for future generations. If you’re the sort who pestered your parents with questions about kittens and the moon, come join my colleagues and me. You’ll be among friends.

    Don Lincoln About the Author: Don Lincoln is a senior scientist at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

    FNALTevatron
    Tevatron at Fermilab

    FNAL Wilson Hall
    Wilson Hall

    When he isn’t exploring the energy frontier, he is busy bringing that information to the public as the author of four books – including the newly released “The Large Hadron Collider: The Extraordinary Story of the Higgs Boson and Other Things That Will Blow Your Mind,” blogs for Nova and Johns Hopkins and numerous magazine articles, including two for Scientific American. He has created a series of You Tube videos and is teaching Mysteries of the Universe for the Professional Learning Program

    See the full article here.

    Scientific American, the oldest continuously published magazine in the U.S., has been bringing its readers unique insights about developments in science and technology for more than 160 years.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 4:26 pm on October 1, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Fermilab   

    From Don Lincoln at Fermilab: “The Big Bang Theory” video 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    From Don Lincoln at Fermilab

    FNAL Don Lincoln

    The Big Bang is the name of the most respected theory of the creation of the universe. Basically, the theory says that the universe was once smaller and denser and has been expending for eons. One common misconception is that the Big Bang theory says something about the instant that set the expansion into motion, however this isn’t true. In this video, Fermilab’s Dr. Don Lincoln tells about the Big Bang theory and sketches some speculative ideas about what caused the universe to come into existence.

    Watch, enjoy, learn.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 3:29 pm on October 1, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Fermilab, , , ,   

    From FNAL- “Going larger than the Large Hadron Collider: first steps toward a future machine” 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014
    Sanjay Padhi, Next Steps in the Energy Frontier workshop co-leader, University of California, San Diego Distinguished LPC Researcher

    In 2012, when scientists at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider discovered the Higgs boson, the machine was colliding particles at an energy of 8 teraelectronvolts, or 8 TeV. Just imagine what a 100-TeV collider could uncover.

    CERN LHC Map
    CERN LHC Grand Tunnel
    CERN LHC particles
    CERN LHC

    That’s what more than 80 scientists in the field of particle physics discussed at a workshop hosted by the LHC Physics Center at Fermilab from Aug. 25-28. Such a collider could unlock profound mysteries of the modern era of physics that remain unanswered. The world’s leading experts in accelerators,detectors and particle physics theory gathered to outline how the community could take the “Next Steps in the Energy Frontier” to address these questions.

    The global community has put forward two possible initiatives for a 100-TeV hadron collider: one based in Beijing, called the Super Proton Proton Collider, and one based at CERN in Geneva, the Future Circular Collider. If built, such a collider would be the largest ever, capable of probing nature at the shortest possible distance ever explored, 10-18 centimeters.

    “No matter what the next few years of experiments — in the lab, underground and in space — will unveil, the direct exploration of the shortest possible distances remains the principal probe of the fundamental laws of nature,” said CERN scientist Michelangelo Mangano. “Preparing for the next step in this endeavor is a duty, and it’s fun!”

    It would also be the first particle accelerator to have decisive coverage of exploring a weakly interacting massive particle [WIMP] dark matter candidate. It would also shed light on the mass scale related to the widely discussed naturalness aspects of nature, the asymmetry between matter and antimatter observed in our universe, rare phenomena associated with Higgs boson productions, and symmetry between matter and forces, among other unresolved matters.

    The workshop provided a platform where leaders from Beijing and CERN discussed in detail for the first time in the United States the issues attendant in realizing the technology required by such a high-energy collider: strong high-field superconducting magnets, including those that can operate at higher temperatures; precise, fast, high-resolution, radiation-hard silicon detectors only 10 to 30 microns thick; imaging energy-measuring calorimeters; next-generation computing frameworks for trigger systems and analyses and other advancements.

    “It was a very special experience to be on the ‘ground floor’ of such a grand, ambitious and worthwhile collective endeavor. The array of theorists and experimentalists at the workshop included the world’s best,” said Raman Sundrum from the University of Maryland.

    As with any innovation, these technological advancements will have an impact beyond fundamental research, benefiting industrial fields in R&D and cost. Indeed, a project of this magnitude will require synergies between various initiatives and provide international collaboration opportunities not only within the scientific communities, but also with industry. Members of the particle physics community plan to continue efforts toward a 100-TeV hadron collider, with the United States playing a central role.

    “This workshop opens a vision for the future of the study of fundamental interactions that points beyond the coming decade, continuing to follow our passion for science,” said workshop co-organizer Meenakshi Narain of Brown University.

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 5:17 pm on September 30, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Fermilab, STEM   

    From FNAL: “High school students advance particle physics and their own science education at Fermilab” 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014
    Leah Hesla

    As an eighth grader, Paul Nebres took part in a 2012 field trip to Fermilab. He learned about the laboratory’s exciting scientific experiments, said hello to a few bison and went home inspired.

    kids
    Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy students Nerione Agrawal (left) and Paul Nebres (right) work on the Muon g-2 experiment through the Student Inquiry and Research program. Muon g-2 scientist Brendan Kiburg (center) co-mentors the students. Photo: Fermilab

    Now a junior at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA) in Aurora, Nebres is back at Fermilab, this time actively contributing to its scientific program. He’s been working on the Muon g-2 project since the summer, writing software that will help shape the magnetic field that guides muons around a 150-foot-circumference muon storage ring.

    Nebres is one of 13 IMSA students at Fermilab. The high school students are part of the academy’s Student Inquiry and Research program, or SIR. Every Wednesday over the course of a school year, the students use these weekly Inquiry Days to work at the laboratory, putting their skills to work and learning new ones that advance their understanding in the STEM fields.

    The program is a win for both the laboratory and the students, who work on DZero, MicroBooNE, MINERvA and electrical engineering projects, in addition to Muon g-2.

    “You can throw challenging problems at these students, problems you really want solved, and then they contribute to an important part of the experiment,” said Muon g-2 scientist Brendan Kiburg, who co-mentors a group of four SIR students with scientists Brendan Casey and Tammy Walton. “Students can build on various aspects of the projects over time toward a science result and accumulate quite a nice portfolio.”

    This year roughly 250 IMSA students are in the broader SIR program, conducting independent research projects at Argonne National Laboratory, the University of Chicago and other Chicago-area institutions.

    IMSA junior Nerione Agrawal, who started in the SIR program this month, uses her background in computing and engineering to simulate the potential materials that will be used to build Muon g-2 detectors.

    “I’d been to Fermilab a couple of times before attending IMSA, and when I found out that you could do an SIR at Fermilab, I decided I wanted to do it,” she said. “I’ve really enjoyed it so far. I’ve learned so much in three weeks alone.”

    The opportunities for students at the laboratory extend beyond their particular projects.

    “We had the summer undergraduate lecture series, so apart from doing background for the experiment, I learned what else is going on around Fermilab, too,” Nebres said. “I didn’t expect the amount of collaboration that goes on around here to be at the level that it is.”

    In April, every SIR student will create a poster on his or her project and give a short talk at the annual IMSAloquium.

    Kiburg encourages other researchers at the lab to advance their projects while nurturing young talent through SIR.

    “This is an opportunity to let a creative person take the reins of a project, steward it to completion or to a point that you could pick up where they leave off and finish it,” he said. “There’s a real deliverable outcome. It’s inspiring.”

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 11:02 am on September 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Electron Beam Technology, Fermilab,   

    From FNAL- “Feature Breakthrough: nanotube cathode creates more electron beam than large laser system 


    Fermilab is an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    Monday, Sept. 22, 2014
    Troy Rummler

    Lasers are cool, except when they’re clunky, expensive and delicate.

    So a collaboration led by RadiaBeam Technologies, a California-based technology firm actively involved in accelerator R&D, is designing an electron beam source that doesn’t need a laser. The team led by Luigi Faillace, a scientist at RadiaBeam, is testing a carbon nanotube cathode — about the size of a nickel — in Fermilab’s High-Brightness Electron Source Lab (HBESL) that completely eliminates the need for a room-sized laser system currently used to generate the electron beam.

    Fermilab was sought out to test the experimental cathode because of its capability and expertise for handling intense electron beams, one of relatively few labs that can support this project.

    Tests have shown that the vastly smaller cathode does a better job than the laser. Philippe Piot, a staff scientist in the Fermilab Accelerator Division and a joint appointee at Northern Illinois University, says tests have produced beam currents a thousand to a million times greater than the one generated with a laser. This remarkable result means that electron beam equipment used in industry may become not only less expensive and more compact, but also more efficient. A laser like the one in HBESL runs close to half a million dollars, Piot said, about hundred times more than RadiaBeam’s cathode.

    The technology has extensive applications in medical equipment and national security, as an electron beam is a critical component in generating X-rays. And while carbon nanotube cathodes have been studied extensively in academia, Fermilab is the first facility to test the technology within a full-scale setting.

    “People have talked about it for years,” said Piot, “but what was missing was a partnership between people that have the know-how at a lab, a university and a company.”

    Piot and Fermilab scientist Charles Thangaraj are partnering with RadiaBeam Technologies staff Luigi Faillace and Josiah Hartzell and Northern Illinois University student Harsha Panuganti and researcher Daniel Mihalcea. A U.S. Department of Energy Small Business Innovation Research grant, a federal endowment designed to bridge the R&D gap between basic research and commercial products, funds the project. The work represents the kind of research that will be enabled in the future at the Illinois Accelerator Research Center — a facility that brings together Fermilab expertise and industry.

    hp
    Harsha Panunganti of Northern Illinois University works on the laser system (turned off here) normally used to create electron beams from a photocathode. Photo: Reidar Hahn

    The new cathode appears at first glance like a smooth black button, but at the nanoscale it resembles, in Piot’s words, “millions of lightning rods.”

    tubre
    The dark carbon-nanotube-coated area of this field emission cathode is made of millions of nanotubes that function like little lightning rods. At Fermilab’s High-Brightness Electron Source Lab, scientists have tested this cathode in the front end of an accelerator, where a strong electric field siphons electrons off the nanotubes to create an intense electron beam. Photo: Reidar Hahn

    “When you apply an electric field, the field lines organize themselves around the rods’ extremities and enhance the field,” Piot said. The electric field at the peaks is so intense that it pulls streams of electrons off the cathode, creating the beam.

    Traditionally, lasers strike cathodes in order to eject electrons through photoemission. Those electrons form a beam by piggybacking onto a radio-frequency wave, synchronized to the laser pulses and formed in a resonance cavity. Powerful magnets focus the beam. The tested nanotube cathode requires no laser as it needs only the electric field already generated by the accelerator to siphon the electrons off, a process dubbed field emission.

    The intense electric field, though, has been a tremendous liability. Piot said critics thought the cathode “was just going to explode and ruin the electron source, and we would be crying because it would be dead.”

    One of the first discoveries Piot’s team made when they began testing in May was that the cathode did not, in fact, explode and ruin everything. The exceptional strength of carbon nanotubes makes the project feasible.

    Still, Piot continues to study ways to optimize the design of the cathode to prevent any smaller, adverse effects that may take place within the beam assembly. Future research also may focus on redesigning an accelerator that natively incorporates the carbon nanotube cathode to avoid any compatibility issues.

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

    Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics.

    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 341 other followers

%d bloggers like this: