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  • richardmitnick 2:57 pm on July 1, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Tevatron   

    The Movie “Particle Fever” Fails to Impress 

    I have been waiting expectantly for the movie Particle Fever. Now that I have seen it, I am not impressed. It is not that they did not do a good job, they did a wonderful job. It is rather that the story is just lots of people moving around and speaking physics. If it reminds me of anything, it is of the PBS Independent Lens movie The Atom Smashers (2008) which is based on Fermilab’s Tevatron and the hunt for Higgs. To my mind, The Atom Smashers is actually a better film. I wish I could provide it here, but I can not find a copy that I can insert.

    Fermilab Tevatron

    Also, Particle Fever makes absolutely no mention of the Tevatron or Fermilab, without which CERN would have had a much harder time getting going. A tremendous amount of foundational High Energy Physics occurred at Fermilab.

    A better movie about CERN, The LHC and the hunt for Higgs is The Big Bang Machine (2008). Now admittedly, Particle Fever is up to date and The Big Bang Machine is based on an earlier time. But it is a better movie for teaching about what can happen at CERN.

    You will get Particle Fever on your own. Here is The Big Bang Machine. I hope that you watch it, enjoy it, and learn from it.

  • richardmitnick 12:46 pm on March 19, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , Tevatron   

    From Fermilab: “International team of LHC and Tevatron scientists announces first joint result” 

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

    Wednesday, March 19, 2014
    No Writer Credit

    Scientists working on the world’s leading particle collider experiments have joined forces, combined their data and produced the first joint result from Fermilab’s Tevatron and CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC), past and current holders of the record for most powerful particle collider on Earth. Scientists from the four experiments involved—ATLAS, CDF, CMS and DZero—announced their joint findings on the mass of the top quark today at the Rencontres de Moriond international physics conference in Italy.

    Fermilab Tevatron
    Fermilab Tevatron

    Inside the LHC


    Fermilab CDF
    Fermilab CDF

    CERN CMS New

    Fermilab DZero
    Fermilab DZero

    Together the four experiments pooled their data analysis power to arrive at a new world’s best value for the mass of the top quark of 173.34 plus/minus 0.76 GeV/c2.

    Experiments at the LHC at the CERN laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland and the Tevatron collider at Fermilab near Chicago in Illinois, USA are the only ones that have ever seen top quarks—the heaviest elementary particles ever observed. The top quark’s huge mass (more than 100 times that of the proton) makes it one of the most important tools in the physicists’ quest to understand the nature of the universe.

    The new precise value of the top-quark mass will allow scientists to test further the mathematical framework that describes the quantum connections between the top quark, the Higgs particle and the carrier of the electroweak force, the W boson. Theorists will explore how the new, more precise value will change predictions regarding the stability of the Higgs field and its effects on the evolution of the universe. It will also allow scientists to look for inconsistencies in the Standard Model of particle physics – searching for hints of new physics that will lead to a better understanding of the nature of the universe.

    The Standard Model of elementary particles, with the three generations of matter, gauge bosons in the fourth column, and the Higgs boson in the fifth.

    “The combining together of data from CERN and Fermilab to make a precision top quark mass result is a strong indication of its importance to understanding nature,” said Fermilab director Nigel Lockyer. “It’s a great example of the international collaboration in our field.”

    A total of more than six thousand scientists from more than 50 countries participate in the four experimental collaborations. The CDF and DZero experiments discovered the top quark in 1995, and the Tevatron produced about 300,000 top quark events during its 25-year lifetime, completed in 2011. Since it started collider physics operations in 2009, the LHC has produced close to 18 million events with top quarks, making it the world’s leading top quark factory.

    “Collaborative competition is the name of the game,” said CERN’s Director General Rolf Heuer. “Competition between experimental collaborations and labs spurs us on, but collaboration such as this underpins the global particle physics endeavour and is essential in advancing our knowledge of the universe we live in.”

    Each of the four collaborations previously released their individual top-quark mass measurements. Combining them together required close collaboration between the four experiments, understanding in detail each other’s techniques and uncertainties. Each experiment measured the top-quark mass using several different methods by analysing different top quark decay channels, using sophisticated analysis techniques developed and improved over more than 20 years of top quark research beginning at the Tevatron and continuing at the LHC.

    The joint measurement has been submitted to the electronic arXiv and is available at: http://arxiv.org/abs/1403.4427

    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.

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  • richardmitnick 1:32 pm on February 24, 2014 Permalink | Reply
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    From Fermilab: “Scientists complete the top quark puzzle” 

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

    Monday, Feb. 24, 2014
    Andre Salles, Fermilab Office of Communication: asalles@fnal.gov, 630-840-6733

    Scientists on the CDF and DZero experiments at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory have announced that they have found the final predicted way of creating a top quark, completing a picture of this particle nearly 20 years in the making.

    Matteo Cremonesi, left, of the University of Oxford and the CDF collaboration and Reinhard Schweinhorst of Michigan State University and the DZero collaboration present their joint discovery at a forum at Fermilab on Friday, Feb. 21. The two collaborations have observed the production of single top quarks in the s-channel, as seen in data collected from the Tevatron. Photo: Cindy Arnold

    Fermilab DZero

    Fermilab CDF


    The two collaborations jointly announced on Friday, Feb. 21, that they had observed one of the rarest methods of producing the elementary particle — creating a single top quark through the weak nuclear force, in what is called the s-channel. For this analysis, scientists from the CDF and DZero collaborations sifted through data from more than 500 trillion proton-antiproton collisions produced by the Tevatron from 2001 to 2011. They identified about 40 particle collisions in which the weak nuclear force produced single top quarks in conjunction with single bottom quarks.

    Top quarks are the heaviest and among the most puzzling elementary particles. They weigh even more than the Higgs boson — as much as an atom of gold — and only two machines have ever produced them: Fermilab’s Tevatron and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. There are several ways to produce them, as predicted by the theoretical framework known as the Standard Model, and the most common one was the first one discovered: a collision in which the strong nuclear force creates a pair consisting of a top quark and its antimatter cousin, the anti-top quark.

    The Standard Model of elementary particles, with the three generations of matter, gauge bosons in the fourth column, and the Higgs boson in the fifth.

    Collisions that produce a single top quark through the weak nuclear force are rarer, and the process scientists on the Tevatron experiments have just announced is the most challenging of these to detect. This method of producing single top quarks is among the rarest interactions allowed by the laws of physics. The detection of this process was one of the ultimate goals of the Tevatron, which for 25 years was the most powerful particle collider in the world.

    “This is an important discovery that provides a valuable addition to the picture of the Standard Model universe,” said James Siegrist, DOE associate director of science for high energy physics. “It completes a portrait of one of the fundamental particles of our universe by showing us one of the rarest ways to create them.”

    Searching for single top quarks is like looking for a needle in billions of haystacks. Only one in every 50 billion Tevatron collisions produced a single s-channel top quark, and the CDF and DZero collaborations only selected a small fraction of those to separate them from background, which is why the number of observed occurrences of this particular channel is so small. However, the statistical significance of the CDF and DZero data exceeds that required to claim a discovery.

    “Kudos to the CDF and DZero collaborations for their work in discovering this process,” said Saul Gonzalez, program director for the National Science Foundation. “Researchers from around the world, including dozens of universities in the United States, contributed to this important find.”

    The CDF and DZero experiments first observed particle collisions that created single top quarks through a different process of the weak nuclear force in 2009. This observation was later confirmed by scientists using the Large Hadron Collider.

    Scientists from 27 countries collaborated on the Tevatron CDF and DZero experiments and continue to study the reams of data produced during the collider’s run, using ever more sophisticated techniques and computing methods.

    “I’m pleased that the CDF and DZero collaborations have brought their study of the top quark full circle,” said Fermilab Director Nigel Lockyer. “The legacy of the Tevatron is indelible, and this discovery makes the breadth of that research even more remarkable.”

    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.

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  • richardmitnick 11:27 am on April 4, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    From Fermilab- “Frontier Science Result: Theory Group Theoretical predictions at LHC” 

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


    Thursday, April 4, 2013
    John Campbell

    “At the LHC, a single collision between beams of protons produces an event containing a spray of particles that can be detected by the experiments. Each event may contain any of the particles of the Standard Model, for instance, W or Z bosons, top or bottom quarks, or collimated jets of strongly interacting hadrons. Much of the experimental program is driven by the search for new physics—typically direct searches for conjectured types of particles—that may also be produced in the hadron collisions. Teasing out the hints, or signals, of the new particles usually requires an accurate assessment of the rate of production of Standard Model background events. Providing a good description of both signal and background events is where theorists can play a crucial role.

    The Standard Model of elementary particles, with the three generations of matter, gauge bosons in the fourth column and the Higgs boson in the fifth.

    Cross section for the production of Z pairs at hadron colliders as a function of the collider operating energy. The predictions of MCFM are compared with Tevatron data taken in proton-antiproton collisions at 1.96 TeV and with proton-proton LHC data at 7 and 8 TeV. Image courtesy of ATLAS

    In the 1990s, theorists began producing the first accurate, or next-to-leading order (NLO), predictions for such background events at the Tevatron. In late 1998, Keith Ellis and I embarked on a project to provide NLO predictions for a wide variety of backgrounds that would be important to understand both at the Tevatron and in the future at the LHC. The project was born with a simple vision: to produce a readily available tool that could provide “one-stop shopping” for accurate predictions at hadron colliders.

    We began by providing state-of-the-art predictions for the production of pairs of W and Z bosons, which we made available through a computer code called MCFM. Since then the code has evolved to include the production of W and Z bosons and jets, single top quarks, top quark pairs and more. Testing our understanding of these Standard Model processes is important to much of the ongoing work at the LHC. For instance, the discovery of the Higgs-like boson at the LHC relied on analyses searching for the Higgs boson decay into a pair of Z bosons. Besides being used in this role, MCFM was also used to predict the rate for producing a Higgs boson in association with two jets. This production mode is crucial to detecting the Higgs boson decay into tau pairs. Precise knowledge of the signal rate allows the experiments to test the couplings of the Higgs boson to fermions. Accurate predictions for the properties of signal and background events such as those in MCFM and other similar programs have been essential for exploiting the full potential of the LHC.

    I have taken the liberty of displaying the complete article because of its importance. I am hoping that none of it is missed. See the original 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.

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  • richardmitnick 1:17 pm on February 23, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    From Fermilab Today: “World’s best measurement of W boson mass tests Standard Model, Higgs boson limits “ 

    Fermilab continues to be a great source of strength in the U.S. Basic Research Community.

    Tona Kunz
    Thursday, Feb. 23, 2012

    “Today, scientists from the CDF collaboration have unveiled the world’s most precise measurement of the W boson mass, based on data gathered at the Tevatron accelerator. The precision of this measurement surpasses all previous measurements combined and restricts the space in which the Higgs particle should reside according to the Standard Model, the theoretical framework that describes all known subatomic particles and forces.

    The result comes at a pivotal time, just a couple of weeks before physicists from experiments at the Tevatron and the Large Hadron Collider in CERN plan to present their latest direct-search results in the hunt for the Higgs at the annual conference on Electroweak Interactions and Unified Theories known as Rencontres de Moriond in Italy.

    The CDF and DZero results for the W mass likely will be one of the long-lasting scientific legacies of the Tevatron.


    See the full article here.

  • richardmitnick 7:56 pm on December 21, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Tevatron   

    From isgtw via Fermilab Today: “The Tevatron’s enduring computing legacy” 

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

    DECEMBER 21, 2011

    Part I

    “Few laypeople think of computing innovation in connection with the Tevatron particle accelerator, which shut down earlier this year. Mention of the Tevatron inspires images of majestic machinery, or thoughts of immense energies and groundbreaking physics research, not circuit boards, hardware, networks, and software.

    Yet over the course of more than three decades of planning and operation, a tremendous amount of computing innovation was necessary to keep the data flowing and physics results coming. In fact, computing continues to do its work. Although the proton and antiproton beams no longer brighten the Tevatron’s tunnel, physicists expect to be using computing to continue analyzing a vast quantity of collected data for several years to come.”

    A night-time view of the Tevatron. Photo by Reidar Hahn.

    See the full article here.

  • richardmitnick 2:09 pm on December 16, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , Tevatron   

    From the Wall Street Journal: MICHIO KAKU – “The ‘God Particle’ and the Origins of the Universe” 


    This is copyright protected, so just enough to get you interested.

    “Physicists around the world have something to celebrate this Christmas. Two groups of them, using the particle accelerator in Switzerland, have announced that they are tantalizingly close to bagging the biggest prize in physics (and a possible Nobel): the elusive Higgs particle, which the media have dubbed the “God particle.” Perhaps next year, physicists will pop open the champagne bottles and proclaim they have found this particle.

    Finding this missing Higgs particle, or boson, is big business. The European machine searching for it, the Large Hadron Collider, has cost many billions so far and is so huge it straddles the French-Swiss border, near Geneva. At 17 miles in circumference, the colossal structure is the largest machine of science ever built and consists of a gigantic ring in which two beams of protons are sent in opposite directions using powerful magnetic fields.

    The collider’s purpose is to recreate, on a tiny scale, the instant of genesis. It accelerates protons to 99.999999% the speed of light. When the two beams collide, they release a titanic energy of 14 trillion electron volts and a shower of subatomic particles shooting out in all directions. Huge detectors, the size of large apartment buildings, are needed to record the image of this particle spray.”

    See the full article here.

    Unfortunately, there is little background information about the U.S. contribution to the work at the LHC, or what preceded it here in the U.S.

    What preceded it is forty years of Higgs hunting by the Tevatron at Fermilab, Batavia Illinois.
    In fact, at the range now left for study, 115-130GeV, Fermilab, with tons of data still to sift, might just come up with Higgs before the LHC.

    There are some 1600 U.S. scientists attached in some way to the LHC. Approximately 1000 scientists are attached top the CMS Collaboration remote location at Fermilab, one of only three such remote locations in the world. Another approximately 600 scientists are attached to ATLAS at Brookhaven Lab on Long Island, NY. These numbers are approximate. These are doctoral candidates and “post-docs” also affiliated with universities, and other U.S. D.O.E. labs.

    Both Fermilab and Brookhaven Lab made significant contributions to the design, engineering, and construction of the LHC.

    Please do read Michio Kaku’s piece.

    • bishops court 7:56 pm on October 3, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Particularly useful article From the Wall Street Journal: MICHIO KAKU.
      Keep writing!!


  • richardmitnick 5:57 pm on December 14, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , Tevatron   

    Two Articles in Today’s Newspapers about the Happenings at CERN Miss Some Key Background for U.S. Science 

    So, today, two leading newspapers actually had articles about the events – announcements, not collissions- at CERN yestderday. I am sure that there must have been others; but these are two newspapers on my doorstep every morning. Both articles are copyright protected, so I will only quote a few beginning lines.

    From the Wall Street Journal

    The article is here: Physicists Close In on a Universal Puzzle

    Particles collide at an exhibit at CERN, whose scientists hope to discover the Higgs boson, a theoretical particle that could explain how the universe is built. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

    Gautam Naik

    “Scientists are making tantalizing progress in the hunt for the elusive Higgs boson, a theoretical particle that could explain how the universe is built, though their data aren’t robust enough yet to claim a conclusive discovery.

    On Tuesday, physicists at the Large Hadron Collider, or LHC, near Geneva, Switzerland, said that data from two independent experiments had narrowed the range of the would-be particle’s likely mass”

    From The New York Times

    The article is here: Data Hints at Elusive Particle, but the Wait Continues

    From left, Rolf Heuer, the director general of CERN — the European Organization for Nuclear Research — and Guido Tonelli, the spokesman for the Compact Muon Solenoid team of researchers, at a presentation at CERN about developments in the search for the Higgs boson. Salvatore Di Nolfi/KEYSTONE, via Associated Press

    “Physicists will have to keep holding their breath a while longer.
    Two teams of scientists sifting debris from high-energy proton collisions in the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research outside Geneva, said Tuesday that they had recorded tantalizing hints — but only hints — of a long-sought subatomic particle known as the Higgs boson, whose existence is a key to explaining why there is mass in the universe. By next summer, they said, they will have enough data to say finally whether the elusive particle really exists.”

    So, what’s missing? The United States of America is missing. The reason I started this blog is because the U.S. contribution to basic scientific research world wide in almost invisible in our standard press.
    The WSJ article fails to even mention the 40 year history of the Tevatron at Fermilab. In actual fact, with Higgs limited to about 115-135 GeV, the Tevatron still has a shot. There is tons of data to be sifted in Batavia, IL.

    Also missing is any reference whatsoever to the Superconducting Super Collider, a project to have been built in Texas with a 52 mile ring. This collider would have reached about 50TeV, far greater than the LHC’s 7Tev, and far more likely to find Higgs. But, our (Democratic) Congress killed the collider project in 1993, as having no immediate economic value.

    And, finally, there is absolutely no mention of the 1600 U.S. scientists working on LHC projects, both in Geneva and at U.S. universities and D.O.E. labs. About 1000 people are based at Fermilab National Accelerator Lab in a “remote center” one of three in the world – for the CMS collaboration. Most of the rest of the 1600 are assigned to the ATLAS project, which has a base in the U.S. at Brookhaven National Laboratory on Long Island, NY.

    Also, both Fermilab and Brookhaven made significant contributions to the design, engineering, and construction of the LHC.

    Because I follow Quantum Diaries for this blog, I know that there are also scientists, doctoral candidates, post-docs, etc., at other sites, like Cornell UIniversity, NYU, University of Tennessee, University of Wisconsin, Berkeley Lab, and many other august U.S. institutions and univerities.

    Regarding Dennis Overbye’s article, there is noted the work at Fermilab and its “now defunct Tevatron”. But again, nothing about the debacle in Congress in 1993, nor any comment concerning the contributions of U.S. scientists or U.S. D.O.E laboratories. Mr. Overbye is a great science writer. Check the link I gave: Mr. Overbye graduated from M.I.T with a degree in Physics. He knows his stuff.

    I believe the information that I see missing from both articles is important because it sets a background context for the U.S. contribution to the search for Higgs.

    Please visit the complete articles. They are really quite worthwhile, despite the shortcomings I cite.

  • richardmitnick 1:23 pm on September 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , Tevatron   

    Fermilab – A Celebration of the Future of This Great, Mighty and Awe-Inspiring Research Laboratory 


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

    Frontiers of Particle Physics

    Three frontiers: energy, intensity and cosmic
    At Fermilab, a robust scientific program pushes forward on three interrelated frontiers. Each frontier has a unique approach to making discoveries, and all three are essential to answering key questions about the laws of nature and the cosmos. Some questions can only be addressed by experiments at one frontier, but others require investigation on multiple fronts to create a complete picture.

    Energy Frontier
    At the Energy Frontier, scientists build advanced particle accelerators to explore the fundamental constituents and architecture of the universe. There they expect to encounter new phenomena not seen since the immediate aftermath of the big bang. Subatomic collisions at the energy frontier will produce particles that signal these new phenomena, from the origin of mass to the existence of extra dimensions.

    Intensity Frontier
    At the Intensity Frontier, scientists use accelerators to create intense beams of trillions of particles for neutrino experiments and measurements of ultra-rare processes in nature. Measurements of the mass and other properties of the neutrinos are key to the understanding of new physics beyond today’s models and have critical implications for the evolution of the universe. Precise observations of rare processes provide a way to explore high energies, providing an alternate, powerful window to the nature of fundamental interactions.

    Cosmic Frontier
    At the Cosmic Frontier, astrophysicists use the cosmos as a laboratory to investigate the fundamental laws of physics from a perspective that complements experiments at particle accelerators. Thus far, astrophysical observations, including the bending of light known as gravitational lensing and the properties of supernovae, reveal a universe consisting mostly of dark matter and dark energy. A combination of underground experiments and telescopes, both ground- and space-based, will explore these mysterious dark phenomena that constitute 95 percent of the universe.
    These scientific frontiers form an interlocking framework that addresses fundamental questions about the laws of nature and the cosmos.

    Research at the Three Frontiers
    Research at Fermilab explores the fundamental physics of the world around us at each of the three frontiers of particle physics. Scientists from across the country and around the world [have]collaborate[d] on the CDF and DZero experiments at the Tevatron collider. Fermilab hosts a remote operations center, an analysis center and a computing center for more than 1,000 U.S. physicists collaborating on the CMS experiment at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland. Fermilab produces the world’s most intense high-energy beam of neutrinos for experiments to lay bare the secrets of these enigmatic particles. Fermilab is a leader in the search for dark matter and dark energy at both underground detectors and ground-based telescopes. Most of Fermilab’s 10 accelerators will continue to operate after the Tevatron shuts down. Fermilab is constructing new facilities and conducting R&D for next-generation tools for the particle physics research of tomorrow.

    Experiments at the Energy Frontier

    At the Energy Frontier high-energy particle collisions reveal new phenomena. The Tevatron [has] produce[ed] the world’s highest-energy proton-antiproton collisions until the 26-year-old collider shuts down in 2011 [today]. The physicists of the CDF and DZero collaborations will continue to search the Tevatron data for signals of new particles and phenomena. Fermilab serves as host laboratory for more than 1,000 U.S. scientists on the Compact Muon Solenoid, or CMS, experiment at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland. Accelerator scientists at Fermilab, who helped construct the LHC accelerator, will push the boundaries of accelerator R&D for the LHC upgrades.

    Experiments at the Intensity Frontier

    Fermilab’s accelerator complex produces the world’s most intense beam of neutrinos, whose unique properties appear to be at the crux of many questions about the universe. The MINOS experiment uses a high-energy beam of neutrinos and underground detectors at Fermilab and in Minnesota to measure the phenomenon of neutrino oscillation. The MiniBooNE experiment uses a lower-energy neutrino beam to study neutrino mass. The MINERvA experiment explores nuclear and particle physics through neutrino scattering.


    MiniBooNE Detector

    MINERvA experiment

    Fermilab scientists are now building the next generation of neutrino experiments. The NOvA experiment will study the morphing of muon neutrinos into electron neutrinos and aims to determine the neutrino mass hierarchy. NOvA detectors are now under construction at Fermilab and in Soudan, Minnesota. R&D is underway for the MicroBooNE experiment, which will use liquid-argon technology to measure low-energy neutrino phenomena and investigate anomalies observed by the MiniBooNE experiment. A group of scientists and engineers is developing plans for the Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment, or LBNE.

    NOvA experiment looking north

    MicroBooNE experiment

    Ongoing R&D prepares Fermilab to break new ground in research on revelatory rare phenomena with the muon-to-electron conversion, or Mu2e, and g-2 experiments. Accelerator R&D at Fermilab and the construction of a test accelerator help develop the technologies needed for the next generation of accelerators.



    Experiments at the Cosmic Frontier

    Fermilab physicists bring the perspectives and technologies of particle physics to the search for dark matter and dark energy, and to the construction and operation of large-scale ground and space telescopes. Fermilab plays a prominent role in the study of ultra-high-energy cosmic rays through the Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina. Fermilab led the construction of the Dark Energy Camera for the Dark Energy Survey [DES]. In 2011, DES will begin to install the digital camera, among the world’s largest, on a telescope in Chile to explore the nature of dark energy. Using the largest optical survey power in the world, DES will map about one-tenth of the sky and carry out the largest galaxy survey to date.

    Dark Energy Camera

    The CDMS experiment looks for particles of dark matter using a germanium-crystal detector in a mine in Minnesota, while COUPP uses an underground bubble chamber in Canada’s SNOLAB. Pioneering Fermilab R&D will develop critical zero-background technology for future dark-matter detectors.

    CDMS detector

    Physicists of the Fermilab Center for Particle Astrophysics conduct R&D for future experiments, including a Holographic Interferometer, or Holometer, to test a particular idea about how matter, energy, space and time behave on the smallest scales.
    • 2012-2014

    New experiments at the Frontiers

    From 2012 to 2014, Fermilab’s primary research focus will shift from the Energy Frontier to the Intensity Frontier, with the construction of new experiments and preparation for new large-scale projects. In 2012, the laboratory will upgrade several of its 10 detectors. At the Cosmic Frontier, the search will continue for dark-matter particles and the origins of dark energy. Fermilab will also pursue R&D for future particle accelerators and detectors to advance technology, enable future experiments and create innovations for the benefit of society.

    Making discoveries at the Energy Frontier

    During the next several years, scientists on Fermilab’s CDF and DZero experiments will continue to analyze Tevatron data, searching for signs of the Higgs boson and matter-antimatter asymmetries. Fermilab will also remain a strong partner for U.S. collaborators on the Large Hadron Collider experiments at CERN. Fermilab’s Remote Operations Center and Grid Computing Center provide access to the LHC’s collision data for U.S. scientists.

    Advancing research at the Intensity Frontier

    Certain particle physics experiments require particle beams with incredibly large numbers of particles:
    The Intensity Frontier.

    To prepare for new experiments at the Intensity Frontier, Fermilab will upgrade its accelerator complex in 2012. Scientists will retool the complex to create intense particle beams for experiments such as NOvA and MicroBooNE that will explore neutrino interactions and rare subatomic processes.

    When the accelerator upgrades are complete, Fermilab will use the world’s most intense neutrino beam for the NOvA experiment, a 15,000-ton detector under construction in Minnesota. NOvA scientists expect to record the first neutrino data in 2013. Simultaneously, physicists are advancing the MicroBooNE experiment. It will use a liquid-argon detector to study neutrinos at lower energy than NOvA. Scientists expect construction of the MicroBooNE detector to begin in 2013 and to have first data in 2015.

    Exploring the Cosmic Frontier

    Using the cosmos as a laboratory, Fermilab scientists will continue to investigate dark matter and dark energy with underground experiments and ground-based telescopes. In 2012, Fermilab will start up the 570-megapixel Dark Energy Camera, mounted on a telescope in Chile. Scanning about 12 percent of the southern sky, the camera will seek the origins of dark energy by photographing galaxies when they were only a few billion years old. The Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina will continue to search for the origin of the highest-energy cosmic rays.

    Operating particle detectors deep underground, Fermilab scientists will continue to search for dark matter. Scientists working on the CDMS experiment at the Soudan Mine in Minnesota will upgrade its detector, making the experiment more sensitive to dark-matter particles. Meanwhile, members of the COUPP collaboration will start operating a 60-kg bubble chamber at Canada’s SNOLAB to look for dark-matter particles.

    Creating next-generation accelerator technology

    Future Fermilab accelerator R&D will focus on superconducting radio-frequency technology[SRF]. Fermilab will break ground in fall 2011 for the Illinois Accelerator Research Center, a state-of-the-art facility where scientists and engineers from Fermilab, Argonne and Illinois universities will work side by side with industrial partners to research and develop breakthroughs in accelerator science and translate them into applications for the nation’s health, wealth and security. In 2013, the laboratory will complete an SRF accelerator test facility, the first of its kind in the United States. In collaboration with industry and other DOE national laboratories, scientists will use SRF components to accelerate a particle beam in this facility. By 2014, Fermilab plans to complete the technical design for the proposed Project X, a linear accelerator that would use SRF technology to explore new physics at the Intensity Frontier.

    Illinois Accelerator Research Center

    Fermilab’s research program for 2015 and beyond

    New facilities at Fermilab, the nation’s dedicated particle physics laboratory, would provide thousands of scientists from across the United States and around the world with world-class scientific opportunities. In collaboration with the Department of Energy and the particle physics community, Fermilab is pursuing a strategic plan that addresses fundamental questions about the physical laws that govern matter, energy, space and time. Fermilab is advancing plans for the best facilities in the world for the exploration of neutrinos and rare subatomic processes, far beyond current global capabilities. The proposed construction of a two-megawatt high-intensity proton accelerator, Project X, would enable a comprehensive program of discovery at the Intensity Frontier and spur the development of accelerator technology for future energy-frontier accelerators. The proposed LBNE neutrino project [see above], which would use the world’s highest-intensity neutrino beam, would allow scientists to explore the role that neutrinos played in creating a universe of matter. And a new muon experiment, Mu2e, would aim to find out whether muons morph into electrons the way that quarks and neutrinos can transform into each other, with transformational implications for particle physics.

    LBNE neutrino project

    Project X

    High-intensity particle beams

    The proposed Project X accelerator would allow scientists to conduct a series of experiments at the Intensity Frontier with a 2-megawatt particle beam. The half-mile-long accelerator would accelerate a proton beam with almost seven times the beam intensity of Fermilab’s best accelerator performance in 2010. The beam would provide particles for kaon, muon, nuclear and neutrino experiments that would address key questions of 21st-century physics: How did the universe come to be? What happened to the antimatter? Do all the forces unify? These intensity-frontier measurements would open a doorway to realms of ultra-high energies beyond those that any particle collider could ever directly achieve.

    The best neutrino experiment in the world

    Are neutrinos the reason we exist? The roughly 300 scientists of the LBNE collaboration are advancing plans for the world’s best neutrino and proton decay experiment. It would send a high-intensity neutrino beam from Fermilab to a particle detector in South Dakota. Construction of the experiment, which received stage-one approval by DOE in 2010, could be underway in 2015. The experiment’s capabilities would far exceed those of the NOvA neutrino experiment, which will take data until 2019. Located underground, the LBNE detectors would determine whether neutrinos break the matter-antimatter symmetry, which could be the long-sought explanation for the dominance of matter over antimatter across the universe. Scientists also would use the ultra-sensitive detector to search for signs of proton decay, a phenomenon predicted by models for a Grand Unified Theory.

    Using muons to look beyond the Standard Model

    Physicists have found that quarks and neutrinos are notorious violators of flavor symmetry—a fundamental symmetry of the Standard Model of particles. So far, though, experiments have failed to observe flavor violation by electrons and muons. The Mu2e experiment [above], awarded first-stage approval by DOE in 2009 for a possible construction start by 2015, would search for the rare transformation of a muon into an electron, a clear signal of flavor symmetry violation—and unmistakable evidence of physics beyond the Standard Model.

    The next-generation particle collider

    In collaboration with industry and DOE national laboratories, Fermilab is developing superconducting acceleration technologies. These SRF technologies have future proton and electron beam applications, including Project X and next-generation energy-frontier particle colliders. Scientists are developing proposals for several future colliders, including the International Linear Collider and a muon collider (see animation). Discoveries at CERN’s LHC will soon determine which direction will best advance energy-frontier research. Beyond 2015, U.S. scientists will continue to make crucial contributions to the CMS experiment at the LHC thanks to Fermilab’s Grid Computing Center and LHC Remote Operations Center.

    Research at the Cosmic Frontier

    Ninety-five percent of the universe consists of unknown dark matter and dark energy. Fermilab conducts some of the world’s most advanced cosmic-frontier experiments to discover their nature and plans to remain a leader in the next generation of world-class projects. In 2015, the Dark Energy Survey will be in the middle of its initial 5-year run, and Fermilab scientists are planning upgrades to extend the operation of the Dark Energy Camera for an additional five years. The CDMS and COUPP collaborations are developing plans for larger-scale underground experiments, much more sensitive to dark-matter particles than any currently operating experiment. Fermilab scientists will work on the LSST collaboration to build a wide-field optical survey telescope to observe more than half the sky every four nights. The LSST identified as a top priority in the 2010 decadal study of the National Research Council, will explore dark energy, supernovae and time-variable phenomena.”

  • richardmitnick 1:17 pm on September 29, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Tevatron   

    From CERN Courier: “Long live the Tevatron” 

    Sep 23, 2011

    As the Tevatron closes down, the data analysis continues, but there are already many areas in which the experiments have delivered results of enduring importance. Chris Quigg surveys some highlights.

    A quarter-century of experimentation is coming to a close at Fermilab’s Tevatron collider, a pioneering instrument that advanced the frontiers of accelerator science and particle physics alike, setting the stage for the LHC at CERN. The world’s first high-energy superconducting synchrotron, the Tevatron served as the model for the proton ring in the HERA collider at DESY and as a key milestone towards the development of the LHC. In its final months of operation the Tevatron’s initial luminosity for proton–antiproton collisions at 1.96 TeV averaged more than 3.5 × 1032 cm–2s–1…The legacy of the Tevatron experiments includes many results for which the high energy of a hadron collider was decisive. Chief among these is the discovery of the top quark, which for 15 years could be studied only at the Tevatron. Exacting measurements of the masses of the top quark and the W boson and of the frequency of Bs oscillations punctured the myth that hadron colliders are not precision instruments. Remarkable detector innovations such as the first hadron-collider silicon vertex detector and secondary vertex trigger, and multilevel triggering are now part of the standard experimental toolkit. So, too, are robust multivariate analysis techniques that enhance the sensitivity of searches in the face of challenging backgrounds. CDF and exemplify one of the great strengths of particle physics: the high value of experimental collaborations whose scientific interests and capabilities expand and deepen over time – responding to new opportunities and delivering a harvest of results that were not imagined when the detectors were proposed.”



    Read Chris Quigg’s full and wonderful celebration of the Tevatron here.

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