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  • richardmitnick 4:32 pm on February 2, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , European XFEL, , High Energy Density Science instrument at the European XFEL or HED   

    From XFEL: “DFG funds investigation of exoplanets at European XFEL” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    02 February 2017
    No writer credit found

    Interdisciplinary research project funded with 2 M€

    With the help of telescopes on Earth and in space, several thousand planets outside of our solar system have been discovered since 1996. Observation data such as mass, radius, and distance from their central star give only a few details about the composition and origin of these exoplanets. The research unit “Matter Under Planetary Interior Conditions”, led by the University of Rostock and including scientists from European XFEL will find out more about these planets in the framework of a grant funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). The researchers want to draw inferences about exoplanets based on the planets in our own solar system and develop suitable methods for this purpose. Their interdisciplinary collaboration comprises theory, planetary modelling, and experiments. This comprises experimental investigations of materials under extreme conditions, such as those found inside of planets at, among others, the European XFEL and the research centre DESY. The DFG will fund the project for the next three years with a total contribution of around 2 million euro.

    “A strength of our proposal is that it combines theory, planetary modelling, and experiments in order to learn more about the composition and development of planets inside and outside of our solar system”, says Prof. Ronald Redmer of the University of Rostock, spokesperson for the research unit. In addition, the findings will be used for the evaluation of observation data from satellite missions.

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    This artist concept depicts in the foreground planet Kepler-62f, a super-Earth-size planet in the habitable zone of its star, which is seen peeking out from behind the right edge of the planet.
    NASA/JPL

    The Kepler Space Telescope has discovered a large number of planets between one and twenty times the mass of the Earth in orbits close to Sun-like stars.

    NASA/Kepler Telescope
    NASA/Kepler Telescope

    These exoplanets are defined as so-called “super-Earths”, which have a similar density and masses up to ten times that of the Earth, and neptunian planets, which have a similar density as the planet Neptune in our solar system. Neptune has a solid core; a mantle composed of liquid water, ammonia, and methane; as well as an atmosphere made of hydrogen, helium, and methane. In the interiors of all of these types of planets pressures can be many times higher than those inside the Earth and temperatures can reach several thousand degrees Celsius. The researchers want to find out how the principal constituents of these planets—for example, magnesium oxide and silicates for super-Earths as well as water, methane, and ammonia for neptunian planets—behave under these conditions.

    The High Energy Density Science instrument at the European XFEL, or HED for short, enables experimental investigations of extreme states of matter like those found inside of planets.

    3
    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/273045438_Scientific_Instrument_High_Energy_Density_Physics_HED

    “In the course of these experiments, we can generate brief spikes in pressure up to a million bar on the sample”, explains Karen Appel, a scientist at HED and project leader for this part of the research unit’s proposal. “The pressure would be as strong as having the weight of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, on someone’s fingertip.” The high pressures and temperatures at the HED instrument are generated through a shockwave triggered by an intense laser pulse. If the material decompresses after the shock, it goes through many different combinations of pressures and temperatures with distinctive material characteristics within very small fractions of a second. The short light flashes of the European XFEL enable sharp snapshots of these states and their properties to be taken. “Through X-ray scattering and X-ray spectroscopy, we will be able to determine the time-resolved structure and properties of magnesium oxide and silicates under these conditions”, says Appel. “With that, we can gather essential data for planetary modelling.”

    Other than the Universities of Rostock and Bayreuth and European XFEL, DESY and the DLR Institute for Planetary Research in Berlin are also participating.

    See the full article here .

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:07 pm on January 19, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , European XFEL, First electrons at -271°C (2 Kelvin), ,   

    From European XFEL: “First electrons in the -271°C cooled main accelerator” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    19 January 2017
    No writer credit

    Accelerator team start test of linac at operation temperature

    1
    View into the accelerator tunnel: behind a chicane (in front) operating at room temperature the electrons are guided into the first four superconducting accelerator modules.
    Dirk Nölle / DESY

    The European XFEL has reached an important milestone on the way to its operation phase: The Accelerator Team has guided the first electrons from their initial acceleration point in the facility’s injector into the superconducting main linear accelerator, which is cooled to -271°C (2 Kelvin). After passing through the first four accelerator modules and a subsequent section wherein the electron bunches are compressed, the particles were captured in an electron dump about 150 metres away.

    “The first cooling of the accelerator was a critical phase in the commissioning of the European XFEL”, said Hans Weise, leader of the Accelerator Consortium responsible for building the accelerator. “The cooling plant team has mastered this through great commitment and much outstanding intuition.”

    At the beginning of December, the experts began to flush the cryogenic system of the accelerator and fill it with helium. On 28 December, after three weeks at the 4-Kelvin (-269°C) mark, the so-called “cold compressors” were switched on. They lowered the pressure of the helium in the linear accelerator to 30 millibar so it could cool further to 2 Kelvin (-271°C, the operational temperature of the accelerator). At the beginning of January, the machine physicists brought the European XFEL injector, which has a superconducting segment within it as well, back into service. After a successful test operation in summer 2016, the injector had been turned off so that the chicane connecting it to the main accelerator could be built. After a short time, the injector again achieved the beam quality of the test operation in summer, and the team could then direct the first particle beam through the chicane and into the main accelerator.

    “We now have sufficient control over the pressure and temperature in the superconducting accelerator, such that we can feed the cavities with the first high frequency field”, Weise explained the next task for the scientists. The 32 resonators in the first four modules are then being brought to resonance frequency and fine-tuned to one another so that the particle bunches can be accelerated through them.

    In the next weeks and months, the successive commissioning of the remaining accelerating sections is planned. As soon as the acceleration is high enough, the electron bunches will be sent through the undulators, which are special magnetic structures in which the X-ray flashes will be generated.

    2
    The “plot for experts” shows the temperature development in the different sections of the main accelerator during the cooldown phase.
    DESY

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 2:33 pm on September 26, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , European XFEL, , , , , uperconducting part of the European XFEL accelerator ready,   

    From European XFEL: “Superconducting part of the European XFEL accelerator ready” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    26 September 2016
    No writer credit found

    Ninety-six modules fully installed in 1.7-km long tunnel section.

    An important milestone in the construction of the X-ray laser European XFEL has been reached: The 1.7-km long superconducting accelerator is installed in the tunnel. The linear accelerator will accelerate bunches of free electrons flying at near-light speed to the extremely high energy of 17.5 gigaelectronvolts. The bunches are accelerated in devices called resonators, which are cooled to a temperature of -271°C. In the next part of the facility, the electron bunches are used to generate the flashes of X-ray light that will allow scientists new insights into the nanocosmos. The European XFEL accelerator will be put into operation step by step in the next weeks. It will be the largest and most powerful linear accelerator of its type in the world. On 6 October, the German Minister for Education and Research, Prof. Johanna Wanka, and the Polish Vice Minister of Science and Education Dr Piotr Dardziński, will officially initiate the commissioning of the X-ray laser, including the accelerator. User operation at the European XFEL is anticipated to begin in mid-2017.

    Responsible for the construction of the accelerator was an international consortium of 17 research institutes under the leadership of Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY), which is also the largest shareholder of the European XFEL.

    DESY

    The central section consists of 96 accelerator modules, each 12 metres long, which contain almost 800 resonators made from ultrapure niobium surrounded by liquid helium. The electrons are accelerated inside of these resonators. The modules, which were industrially produced in cooperation with several partners, are on average about 16% more powerful than specified, so the original goal of 100 modules in the accelerator could be reduced to 96.

    1
    Using a small box as a clean area, technicians make connections between two accelerator modules in the European XFEL tunnel in April.
    Heiner Müller-Elsner / European XFEL

    “I congratulate the accelerator team for this milestone and thank all partners for their perseverance and their tireless efforts”, said the Chairman of the DESY Board of Directors Helmut Dosch. “The individual teams involved meshed like the gears of a clock to build the world’s most powerful and modern linear accelerator. That all was delivered within a tight budget deserves the utmost respect.”

    “We are excited that the installation of the accelerator modules has been successfully completed”, said European XFEL Managing Director and Chairman of the Management Board Massimo Altarelli. “This is an important step on the way to user operation next year. On this path there were numerous challenges that, in the past months and years, we faced together successfully. I thank DESY and our European partners for their enormous effort, and we look together with excitement towards the next weeks and months, when the accelerator goes into operation.”

    2
    The European XFEL accelerator tunnel. European XFEL

    The French project partner CEA in Saclay assembled the modules. Colleagues from the Polish partner institute IFJ-PAN in Kraków performed comprehensive tests of each individual module at DESY before it was installed in the 2-km long accelerator tunnel. Magnets for focusing and steering the electron beam inside the modules came from the Spanish research centre CIEMAT in Madrid. The niobium resonators were manufactured by companies in Germany and Italy, supervised by research centres DESY and INFN in Rome. Russian project partners such as the Efremov Institute in St. Petersburg and the Budker Institute in Novosibirsk delivered the different parts for vacuum components for the accelerator, within which the electron beam will be directed and focused in the non-superconducting portions of the facility at room temperature. Many other components were manufactured by DESY and their partners, including diagnostics and electron beam stabilization mechanisms, among others.

    In October, the accelerator is expected to move towards operation in several steps. As soon as the system for access control is installed, the interior of the modules can be slowly cooled to the operating temperature of two degrees above absolute zero—colder than outer space. Then DESY scientists can send the first electrons through the accelerator. At first, the electrons will be stopped in an “electron dump” at the end of the accelerator, until all of the beam properties are optimized. Then the electron beam will be sent further towards the X-ray light-generating magnetic structures called undulators. Here, the alternating poles of the undulator’s magnets will force the electron bunches to move in a tight, zigzagging “slalom” course for a 210-m stretch. In a self-amplifying intensification process, extremely short and bright X-ray flashes with laser-like properties will be generated. Reaching the conditions needed for this process is a massive technical challenge. Among other things, the electron bunches from the accelerator must meet precisely defined specifications. But the participating scientists have reason for optimism. All foundational principles and techniques have been proven at the free-electron laser FLASH at DESY, the prototype for the European XFEL. At European XFEL itself, the commissioning of the 30-m long injector has been complete since July. The injector generates the electron bunches for the main accelerator and accelerates them in an initial section to near-light speed.

    The beginning of user operation, the final step in the transition from the construction phase to the operation phase, is foreseen for summer 2017.

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 9:55 am on July 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , European XFEL,   

    From XFEL: “Polish contribution to European XFEL successfully completed” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    28 July 2016
    No writer credit found

    Polish delegation visits DESY and European XFEL

    At the successful conclusion of the Polish contribution to the construction of the European XFEL, a delegation including Maciej Chorowski, Director of the Polish National Centre for Research and Development (NCBiR), visited DESY and European XFEL.

    The Polish in-kind contribution to the European XFEL was one of the most important in the construction of the superconducting linear accelerator. Over the past several years, in addition to assembly of components, around 50 Polish scientists performed intensive tests, at first of individual components and later of the complete accelerator modules, prior to their installation in the European XFEL tunnel. “Polish science has done a great service towards the construction and the quality assurance of the world’s most powerful linear accelerator!” said Helmut Dosch, Chairman of the DESY Board of Directors. “The collaboration with our highly engaged Polish colleagues was excellent.”

    Massimo Altarelli, Chairman of the European XFEL Management Board added: “The contribution of Polish laboratories to the linear accelerator was crucial and very successful. This is why more recently, in 2015, we were happy to turn again to Poland to implement assembly of control electronics such as those for the instruments in the experiment hall.”

    1
    At the signing ceremony: NCBJ Deputy Director Ewa Rondio, NCBiR Director Maciej Chorowski, NCBJ Director Krzysztof Kurek, DESY Director Helmut Dosch, NCBJ Deputy Director Zbigniew Gołębiewski, European XFEL Director Massimo Altarelli (left to right). Marta Meyer / DESY

    The NCBJ in Świerk, near Warsaw, is also the Polish shareholder of the European XFEL GmbH. Other Polish institutions also taking part in the construction of the accelerator are Wrocław University of Technology (WUT) and the Henryk Niewodniczański Institute for Nuclear Physics of the Polish Academy of Science (IFJ-PAN) in Krakow. The Polish in-kind contributions are valued at around 19 million euro (in 2005 prices). The total Polish contribution adds up to 26.5 million euro.

    Chorowski, who himself has frequently been a guest at DESY, was thankful that the Polish institutions could strongly profit from the know-how acquired through their work at European XFEL. “This is also in particular a clear opportunity for the participating Polish companies to show their strengths while gaining valuable expertise and references”, said Chorowski.

    On the occasion of the visit, DESY and NCBJ extended their long-time collaboration through another cooperation agreement. Both facilities intend to open the way for continuation and intensification of their collaboration.

    2
    The delegation in the European XFEL tunnel. European XFEL

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    STEM Icon

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 10:06 am on July 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Electron injector for European XFEL exceeds expectations, European XFEL,   

    From XFEL: “Electron injector for European XFEL exceeds expectations” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    25 July 2016
    No writer credit found

    First accelerator section successfully tested

    DESY has successfully concluded tests of the first section of the particle accelerator for the European XFEL. The so-called electron injector, which is 30 metres long, performed distinctly better than expected. The injector already completed a whole week under operating conditions. “Having gathered much valuable experience, we are now all set to start up the entire accelerator complex”, reports Winfried Decking, the machine coordinator at DESY. “This is a huge success for the entire accelerator team, together with our international partners.”

    1
    The diagnostic system produces elongated images of individual electron bunches and allows to analyse them in slices. DESY

    The bright X-ray light of the European XFEL is produced by small bunches of high-energy electrons which are brought to speed by a particle accelerator and then sent down an undulating magnetic path. At each magnetic bend in the path, the electron nunches emit X-rays which add up to a laser-like pulse in a self-amplifying manner.

    DESY is the main shareholder of the European XFEL GmbH and responsible, among other things, for building and operating the 2.1-kilometre particle accelerator. The injector is located at the very beginning of the accelerator to which it supplies tailor-made bunches of electrons. The quality of these electron bunches is crucial to the quality of the X-ray laser pulses at the experimental stations, 3.4 kilometres away. One important quality criterion is how narrowly the electron bunches can be focused. “This so-called emittance is some 40 percent better than specified”, reports Decking.

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    The injector is 30 metres long. Dirk Nölle / DESY

    Ten times every second, the injector produces a train of up to 2700 short bunches of electrons. To test the quality of the beam, a special diagnostic system picks out individual bunches. “We need only about four bunches per train to analyse the beam”, explains Decking. These bunches are tilted by a cavity before striking the diagnostic screen. The elongated image they leave behind as a result can be used to study the longitudinal structure of each bunch in detail. The analysis reveals the outstanding quality of the bunches.

    In the past seven months, the injector, which produced its first electron beam in December, has given the accelerator team an opportunity to get to know all major subsystems of the entire accelerator facility: “The injector includes all the subsystems that are used in the main accelerator too”, says Decking. “This meant we were able to test and familiarise ourselves with them.” All in all, he says, no major obstacles were encountered throughout the several months of its test operation. The injector went offline on Monday, so that it can be connected to the main accelerator, for which commissioning is planned to start in October 2016. The whole facility is expected to be available for experiments as from the summer of 2017.

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    View of DESY’s accelerator control centre, European XFEL section. Dirk Nölle / DESY

    Apart from DESY and European XFEL GmbH, the Centre national de la recherche scientifique CNRS in Orsay (France), the Commissariat à l’énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives CEA in Saclay (France), the Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare INFN in Milan (Italy), the Narodowe Centrum Badań Jądrowych in Swierk (Poland), the Wrocław University of Technology WUT in Wrocław (Poland), the Instytut Fizyki Jądrowej IFJ-PAN in Krakow (Poland), the Institute for High-Energy Physics in Protvino (Russia), the Efremov Institute NIIEFA in St. Petersburg (Russia), the Budker Institute for Nuclear Physics BINP in Novosibirsk (Russia), the Institute for Nuclear Research INR in Moscow (Russia), the Centro de Investigaciones Energéticas, Medioambientales y Tecnológicas CIEMAT in Madrid (Spain), the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid UPM in Madrid (Spain), the University of Stockholm (Sweden), the University of Uppsala (Sweden), and the Paul Scherrer Institute in Villigen (Switzerland) are also involved in the injector.

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 4:56 am on July 14, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , European XFEL,   

    From XFEL: Tunnel Flight 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    Take a flight through the 3.4 km long European XFEL tunnel, from injector to experiment hall, in the latest version of our film!


    Watch, enjoy, learn.

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    STEM Icon

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 8:31 am on May 3, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , European XFEL,   

    From XFEL: “World’s most precise mirror arrives in Hamburg” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    03 May 2016

    The first of several ultraflat mirrors is a milestone of a rigorous research and development effort.

    A 95-cm long mirror that is more precise than any other yet built was delivered to European XFEL, an X-ray laser research facility that is under construction in the Hamburg area of Germany. The mirror is superflat and does not deviate from its surface quality by more than one nanometre, or a billionth of a metre. It is the first of several of its kind needed for the European XFEL. Each will be essential to the facility’s operation, enabling scientists from around the globe to reliably use the world’s brightest X-ray laser light for research into ultrafast chemical processes, complex molecular structures, and extreme states of matter. The precision of the European XFEL mirror is equivalent to a 40-km long road not having any bumps larger than the width of a hair. The mirror’s production is the culmination of a long research and development process involving several institutes and companies in Japan, France, Italy, and Germany.

    The mirror body, with a 95 cm long and 5.2 cm wide reflective face, is made from a single crystal of silicon that was crafted by industrial partners in France and Italy. In order to polish a mirror of the required length to European XFEL’s nanometre specification, the optics company JTEC in Osaka, Japan, used a new polishing method using a pressurized fluid bath capable of stripping atom-thick layers off of the crystal. This development required the construction of a brand-new facility that would be able to meet the exceptional demands from the European XFEL, while also expanding the company’s ability to serve other, similar facilities, such as the LCLS in the U.S. and SwissFEL in Switzerland.

    SLAC/LCLS
    SLAC/LCLS

    SwissFEL Paul Sherrer Institute
    SwissFEL Paul Sherrer Institute

    The polishing technique alone took nearly a year to develop to a point where the extreme quality could be reached.

    1
    European XFEL scientist Maurizio Vannoni inspects the delivered superflat mirror, which does not deviate from a perfect surface by more than a billionth of a metre. European XFEL

    “When we first started working on these optics, we were looking for something that simply didn’t exist at anywhere near this precision”, says Harald Sinn, who leads the European XFEL X-Ray Optics group. “Now we have the first ever mirror at this extreme specification.”

    The mirrors have to be so precise because of the laser properties of the X-rays at the European XFEL. These properties are essential to clearly image matter at the atomic level. Previously, European XFEL simulations had shown that any distortions in the mirrors greater than one nanometre would cause the properties of the laser spot on the sample to be degraded.

    Mirrors of this series will be used to deflect the X-rays by up to a few tenths of a degree into the European XFEL’s six scientific instruments in its underground experiment hall in the town of Schenefeld. This is done because the instruments, which are parallel to each other, will eventually be able to operate in parallel, enabling scientists to have greater access to the facility and its unique X-ray light. Additionally, similar mirrors will focus the X-ray light within some of the facility’s instruments.

    However, the particular mirror that was delivered is needed for filtering the light generated by the facility to only the kind needed for experiments. Within the European XFEL’s X-ray laser light-generating structures, called undulators, some undesirable wavelengths of light are produced. A set of these superflat mirrors will be arranged after each undulator in the facility’s underground tunnels, and the position of each mirror allows for only the desired wavelength of laser light to continue towards the experiment hall. The undesirable wavelengths of light are more energetic and pass through the mirror instead of reflecting, ending up in an adjacent absorber made of boron carbide and tungsten.

    The mirror will now be measured at European XFEL and Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin for additional verification of its specifications. Three more mirrors of the same type are due to arrive at European XFEL in May.

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:01 pm on March 2, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , European XFEL,   

    From XFEL: “All segments of first light-generating system installed in European XFEL” 

    XFEL bloc

    European XFEL

    01 March 2016
    No writer credit

    Facility reaches prominent milestone

    In the metropolitan area of Hamburg, the installation of the 35 segments of the first of three X-ray light producing components of the European XFEL has been completed. Set into one of the facility’s tunnels, the segments are the core part of three systems called undulators, which are each up to 210 metres long and will produce X-ray laser light exceeding the intensity of conventional X-ray sources by a billion times.

    XFEL Undulator
    XFEL undulator. No image credit.

    These pulses of X-ray radiation are the basis for new revolutionary experimental techniques that will allow scientists to study the nanocosmos, with applications in many fields including biochemistry, astrophysics, and materials science. The undulator installation is a major step towards the completion of the European XFEL, a 3.4 km-long X-ray free-electron laser facility that will be the world’s brightest X-ray source when completed. It is also one of Europe’s largest research projects and is due to open to users for research in 2017.

    “With the 35 segments of the first undulator beam line in place, we have clearly reached a very important milestone in the construction of our facility”, says European XFEL Managing Director Prof. Massimo Altarelli. “The X-ray flashes produced in these systems are the basis for the future research at the European XFEL. We are looking forward to 2017, when they will be used to investigate the smallest details of the structure and function of matter in the molecular world.”

    Each of the 35 segments is 5 m long, weighs 7.5 t, and is composed of two girders facing one another, each holding a line of alternating strong permanent magnets. When accelerated electrons pass through the field of alternating polarity generated by the magnets, ultrashort flashes of X-ray laser light are produced. Components between adjacent segments help ensure a consistent magnetic field between them, and control systems allow mechanical movement of components within the undulator, which allows generation of a large spectrum of photon wavelengths.

    Design, development, and prototyping work started approximately eight years ago in a joint collaboration with DESY, European XFEL’s largest shareholder. The same technology is also used in a number of projects at DESY, including the X-ray free-electron laser FLASH and the PETRA III storage ring light source.

    DESY FLASH
    DESY FLASH

    DESY Petra III interior
    DESY PETRA III

    The undulator system was built through a multinational collaboration. The challenging production involved DESY and Russian, German, Swiss, Italian, Slovenian, Swedish, and Chinese institutes and companies under the leadership of the undulator group of the European XFEL. This includes a number in-kind contributions such as electromagnets for the electron beamline designed and manufactured at several institutes in Russia and tested in Sweden; temperature monitoring units from the Manne Siegbahn Laboratory in Sweden; and movers, phase shifters, and control systems designed and manufactured by the research centre CIEMAT in Spain.

    “This was a true synergetic collaboration”, says Joachim Pflüger, group leader of the European XFEL undulator group. “The resources and experience of DESY were essential for the development of the undulator systems. Now there is a great mutual benefit!”

    This first completed undulator will generate short-wavelength “hard” X-rays that will be used for experiments with a focus on structural biology and ultrafast chemistry. All three of the undulators planned for the starting phase of the European XFEL will be operational by the end of 2016.

    How the XFEL undulator works
    How the undulator works.

    See the full article here .

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

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    XFEL Campus

    The Hamburg area will soon boast a research facility of superlatives: The European XFEL will generate ultrashort X-ray flashes—27 000 times per second and with a brilliance that is a billion times higher than that of the best conventional X-ray radiation sources.

    The outstanding characteristics of the facility are unique worldwide. Starting in 2017, it will open up completely new research opportunities for scientists and industrial users.

     
  • richardmitnick 8:11 pm on December 21, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , European XFEL, , ,   

    From DESY: “First electrons accelerated in European XFEL” 

    DESY
    DESY

    2015/12/21
    No Writer Credit

    1
    View into the injector area of European XFEL. The yellow tube is the first superconducting accelerator module (Photo: Dirk Nölle, DESY).

    A crucial component of the European XFEL has taken up operation: The so-called injector, the 45-metre long first part of the superconducting particle accelerator, has accelerated its first electrons to nearly the speed of light. This is the first beam ever accelerated at the European XFEL and represents a major advancement toward the completion of the facility.

    The X-ray laser European XFEL is an international research facility in northern Germany that will produce ultrabright X-ray laser flashes for unprecedented studies of the nanocosmos. It consists of a 2-kilometre long superconducting linear electron accelerator, followed by a series of highly precise magnets to produce the highly brilliant X-ray laser light.

    The injector, which is located on the DESY campus in Hamburg and has been under construction since 2013, produced a series of tightly packed sets of electrons, or bunches, that passed through the 45-metre long injector beamline. The electrons made the full trip from start to end of the injector in 0.15 microseconds, achieving near light speed.

    The injector shapes the highly charged electron bunches and gives them their initial energy, which is gradually increased across a 2-kilometre long linear accelerator that is still being assembled. Once energized, the electrons will be ready to generate the facility’s X-ray flashes, enabling scientists to perform studies that are expected to have large impacts on medicine, energy production and storage, materials research, and many other fields.

    DESY, which is European XFEL’s main shareholder and close partner, is responsible for the construction and operation of the electron injector as well as the rest of the linear accelerator. Components for the injector were produced across Europe by the 17-institute European XFEL Accelerator Consortium, which is led by DESY. This includes work done by DESY as well as in-kind contributions from institutes in France, Italy, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

    XFEL Gun
    The ‘gun’ releases the electrons and accelerates them shaped in bunches (Photo: Dirk Nölle, DESY).

    “All members of the European XFEL Accelerator Consortium contributed to the injector, and we appreciate their professionalism during design, construction, and installation,” says DESY leading scientist Dr. Hans Weise, who is coordinator for the Accelerator Consortium. “Their contributions now allow us to prepare the high-quality electron beam required for operation of the free-electron laser.”

    The design of the injector is strongly based on the one found in DESY’s X-ray free-electron laser FLASH, the prototype facility for the European XFEL that began operation as a user facility in 2005.

    DESY FLASH
    DESY FLASH

    Several billion electrons are released from an electrode of caesium telluride when it is struck by an intense ultraviolet laser flash. The electrons form a bunch which is accelerated by radio frequency and kept together by intense magnetic fields. The bunch is accelerated, first through a normal conducting cavity made of copper, then through a pair of superconducting accelerator cryomodules. The two latter devices are chilled to -271°C by liquid helium to allow for highly efficient beam acceleration. These modules give the full electron beam the required characteristics needed for producing the X-ray flashes that will be used for researching matter at the atomic scale.

    The injector will continue to go through rigorous testing while the rest of the linear accelerator is installed. The next major milestone will be accelerating electrons the for the full accelerator length to the European XFEL’s Osdorfer Born site approximately 2.1 km away from the start of the injector.

    XFEL Campus
    XFEL map

    This is expected in late 2016, with user operation to follow in 2017.

    XFEL Tunnel
    View into the main accelerator tunnel of European XFEL, where 100 superconducting accelerator modules are being installed (Photo: Dirk Nölle, DESY).

    “The first electrons in the injector mark a major milestone for this ambitious discovery machine – my congratulations go to the physicists and engineers who have constructed and installed the components with great dedication,” says Prof. Helmut Dosch, chairman of the DESY Board of Directors. “And with more than half of the superconducting modules of the main accelerator tested and installed, I am sure that the start of the commissioning of the European XFEL accelerator will follow soon.”

    “I am glad to see the efforts with constructing the injector come to a successful completion, as we continue our focus on finishing the rest of the accelerator so we can provide researchers with the world’s brightest X-ray light,” says Prof. Massimo Altarelli, managing director of European XFEL. “I want to thank everyone involved in the construction and start-up of this starting point for our facility.”

    See the full article here .

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    DESY is one of the world’s leading accelerator centres. Researchers use the large-scale facilities at DESY to explore the microcosm in all its variety – from the interactions of tiny elementary particles and the behaviour of new types of nanomaterials to biomolecular processes that are essential to life. The accelerators and detectors that DESY develops and builds are unique research tools. The facilities generate the world’s most intense X-ray light, accelerate particles to record energies and open completely new windows onto the universe. 
That makes DESY not only a magnet for more than 3000 guest researchers from over 40 countries every year, but also a coveted partner for national and international cooperations. Committed young researchers find an exciting interdisciplinary setting at DESY. The research centre offers specialized training for a large number of professions. DESY cooperates with industry and business to promote new technologies that will benefit society and encourage innovations. This also benefits the metropolitan regions of the two DESY locations, Hamburg and Zeuthen near Berlin.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:15 pm on October 15, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , European XFEL, , , SLAC LSLS-II, Superconducting cavities   

    From LC Newsline: “Superconducting cavities are a ‘hot’ topic” 

    Linear Collider Collaboration header
    Linear Collider Collaboration

    15 October 2015
    Ricarda Laasch

    3
    A panel discussion during SRF15. Image: Sebastian Aderhold

    Superconducting cavities are an important part of the design for many international accelerator projects. These particle-accelerating structures are used for many different accelerators from those that produce brilliant light for investigating the microcosm of atoms and molecules to those that let elementary particles collide with each other to understand the beginning of the universe.

    LHC 15-m cryodipole
    LHC 15-m cryodipole

    The ILC is also designed for SRF technology.

    FNAL SRF
    FNAL SRF Cavity

    Roughly 16 000 cavities are needed to accelerate electrons and positrons to high energies to study not only the Higgs boson but also other fundamental mechanisms of our cosmos. “I am sure there will be quite a lot of relevant results and discussions relevant for the ILC this year,” said Nick Walker, Global Coordinator for ILC Accelerator Design & Integration based at the German lab DESY, just before the conference.

    Right now the field of SRF cavities is as active as it has ever been, not only because of the many accelerator projects around the world which have very high demands on the performance of the difference cavities, but also because the step from ‘home made’ cavities to actual ready-to-use industrial mass-produced cavities is happening right now. In the field of cavities the scientists have always worked closely with industrial partners to build the basic structures but the most important steps have always been done ‘in house’ – at the laboratories by the scientists. These steps have now been transferred to different companies with support of many laboratories to mass-produce cavities in an off-the-shelf fashion.

    This transition within the field of cavities clearly reflects itself in the schedule of the conference. In the first two days many overview talks concerning important accelerator projects were given. Status Quo and further steps of the projects were introduced and discussed. Questions concerning design goals and used technologies were always part of the discussions. Each project learns from the projects before. The European XFEL – the first project to use mass produced ready-to-go cavities – is nearly at the end of the cavity production phase and everyone wants to see how the performance and the quality have developed along the production. With two companies producing a total of 800 cavities the statistical analysis of the cavity and the accelerator modules performance was important to many attendees. “It was the first time we have ever done this and we were worried about the performance and how it would work out,” explains Detlef Reschke, who is responsible for review and analysis of the results at the European XFEL project. “Now the results tell us that worrying was not needed.” This is good news for the ILC since the European XFEL uses a similar cavity design and 800 cavities can give a clear indication of how well the production went. Many posters within the poster session on different afternoons illustrated the steps within this project.

    European XFEL Test module
    European XFEL test module

    Following the European XFEL, the Linac Coherent Light Source II (LCLS-II), at SLAC in the US, is the next big project in line and it goes even a step further. A newly developed method to improve the cavities’ quality factor – which means less heat loss for each cavity – should now go into mass production. This method, which brings nitrogen atoms into the metal surface of the cavity, has been under investigation by many different laboratories. It lowers the resistance of the cavity and therefore its heat losses. A complete explanation for this effect is still under discussion within the community and was also ongoing at the conference, but the effect has been proven stable enough. Using the basic cavity recipe from the European XFEL which is now established at the companies and adding the new steps of nitrogen doping should bring LCLS-II, an extension of the already existing light source at SLAC, to life. “With three labs coordinating the R&D effort for the needed new technique the development of the doping process went fast and smooth, so that we have already been able to transfer this new technique to industry,” said Marc Ross, project manager for LCLS-II and former project manager of the Global Design Effort for the ILC. “And this proves that we can further develop and improve this technology fast enough for the ILC.”

    SLAC LCLSII
    SLAC LCLS-II

    Aside from this leap into mass producing ready-to-go cavities there is still a lot R&D ongoing in the field. The following two days were filled with talks from young researchers and established members of this scientific community to present their newest insights concerning SRF cavities. Magnetic flux trapping and expulsion and improving the cooldown procedures were some of the hot topics at the conference. Extremely low temperatures are needed to make the superconductivity work, therefore the cavities need to be cooled down from room temperature to 2 Kelvin (-271 degrees Celsius). This cooling process can have an effect on the cavity performance and scientists are trying to find the best way to cool the structures to achieve the best possible result.

    Hot topics took centre stage after the poster sessions as podium discussions concerning most interesting areas of research in the field right now. Apart from cooldown procedures for cavities, cryomodules and whole accelerators there were discussions about possible new materials and how to retain the performance of the cavities after the assembly into a cryomodules. Both topics are important for the future of the field. Different materials offer different properties which could lower heat losses and improve accelerating power. Different approaches are being made to find a new and possible better material than pure niobium from which cavities for the European XFEL and LCLS-II are made.

    The assembly into cryomodules is one important step to get from a cavity towards a fully functioning particle accelerator, and it is not an easy procedure. Cleanliness and accuracy are key to building good modules which preserve the high quality of the cavities. Here CEA Saclay, France, has taken the step to hand this work over to an industrial partner and to prove that these complex cryomodules can be built within a tight schedule and in high numbers for accelerator projects like the ILC. “The modules were built by our industrial partner but we own the infrastructure and all the tooling. So after the production phase of the European XFEL CEA would be ready to build cryomodules for the ILC with the already well trained staff from our industrial partner,” said Olivier Napoly, Deputy Leader of the Accelerator Department at CEA and project leader of the module production for European XFEL at CEA.

    The week-long conference had many participants from many countries all over the world and the general progress in the field of SRF cavities was shown. Also many vendors and companies involved in the production of cavities were at the conference as exhibitors as well as participants in the conferences poster sessions to show their techniques and production progress to the community. This close partnership between industry and laboratories is another key for accelerator projects like LCLS-II. “We’ll support the two companies to be able to use the nitrogen doping technique on the cavities for LCLS-II,” said Ari Palczewski, Jefferson Lab staff scientist involved in the knowledge transfer for nitrogen doping towards the companies. For the ILC all these activities are important steps to further improve and qualify this accelerating technology and its production process.

    See the full article here .

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    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.

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