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  • richardmitnick 2:05 pm on November 4, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "First beam accelerated in PIP-II cryomodules ushering in new era of superconducting-accelerator operation at Fermilab", , , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE,   

    From DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory: “First beam accelerated in PIP-II cryomodules, ushering in new era of superconducting-accelerator operation at Fermilab” 

    FNAL Art Image
    FNAL Art Image by Angela Gonzales

    From DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory , an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    November 4, 2020
    Leah Hesla

    On Oct. 21, the PIP-II Injector Test Facility at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Fermilab accelerated proton beam through its new superconducting section for the first time at nearly perfect transmission.

    Front end of the PIP-II linear accelerator at FNAL. Photo by Reidar Hahn.


    On Oct. 21, the PIP-II Injector Test Facility at Fermilab accelerated proton beam through its new superconducting section for the first time at nearly perfect transmission. Photo: Lynn Johnson, Fermilab

    The facility, also known as PIP2IT, is a test bed for Fermilab’s upcoming PIP-II superconducting particle accelerator, whose proton beams will reach levels of power not seen before at the lab.

    The milestone ushers in an unprecedented era at Fermilab of proton beam delivery using superconducting radio-frequency accelerators.

    The PIP-II accelerator — the first major U.S. accelerator project with multinational contributions — will enable the production of intense neutrino beams to the international, Fermilab-hosted Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment.

    SURF-Sanford Underground Research Facility, Lead, South Dakota, USA.


    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA.


    SURF DUNE LBNF Caverns at Sanford Lab.


    FNAL DUNE Argon tank at SURF.

    The versatile 800-million-electronvolt, 215-meter-long machine will also be capable of sending high-power proton beams of various patterns to other Fermilab experiments, bolstering the long-term future of the lab.

    PIP-II’s power and versatility depend on its front section, that initial stretch through which protons are released from the gate and cranked up to about 20% the speed of light. As the locale of many of the new techniques that will make PIP-II the heart of the laboratory’s accelerator complex, the front end has a great deal riding on it.

    That’s why the PIP-II collaboration established PIP2IT as a test bed for the front section of PIP-II. At this proving ground, scientists, engineers and technicians work to demonstrate concepts and technologies that will be deployed at PIP-II and reduce or remove the related technical risks.

    “PIP2IT offers fantastic opportunities to further our knowledge and prepare us for surprises that surely lie ahead. It allows the team to test PIP-II critical technologies early, significantly reducing technical project risks, and gain commissioning experience that will be used later to commission PIP-II,” said Eduard Pozdeyev, PIP-II Project scientist and commissioning lead.

    The first day the PIP-II team attempted to accelerate beam through the entire front section, the beam reached an energy of 7.5 million electronvolts at nearly 100% transmission efficiency — meaning that virtually none of the beam was lost along the way. It has since achieved an energy of 9.4 million electronvolts. Critical hardware components demonstrated solid performance and met design requirements. The achieved energy and transmission efficiency enable the project team to move ahead, working toward the ultimate PIP2IT test goals, including a beam energy of roughly 20 million electronvolts.

    PIP2IT consists of two major sections. The first is based on room-temperature technology and includes a radio-frequency quadrupole, a device that focuses and accelerates the beam, designed and built by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

    The second section is based on superconducting radio-frequency technology, or SRF, and consists of two cryomodules which are large housing vessels for the cold, superconducting structures that accelerate the beam, known as cavities. DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory designed and built the first cryomodule, known as HWR. The second cryomodule, a type known as SSR1, was designed and built by Fermilab and houses an accelerator cavity provided by India’s Bhabha Atomic Research Center. (The complete PIP-II accelerator will have 23 cryomodules of five different types.)

    FNAL PIP-II SSR1 Cryomodule Photo: Tom Nicol.

    The acceleration of particles through this superconducting section marks the start of SRF proton beam operation at Fermilab and sets the stage for the first large scale SRF accelerator of the Fermilab complex.

    “First accelerated beam through PIP-II cryomodules at PIP2IT is a major achievement and marks the start of critical tests for one of the most ambitious aspects of the PIP-II project, the front end of the accelerator,” said Fermilab PIP-II Project Director Lia Merminga. “These cryomodules worked exactly as intended the very first time we sent beam through them. We rarely see a nearly perfect performance like this on the first try. It’s a solid accomplishment, and a credit to our team’s technical excellence and rigorous quality control.”

    Not only is PIP2IT a high-performing accelerator, it also uses next-generation technology to create beautiful beams.

    For example, Fermilab’s PIP-II team plans to employ “strong-back” technology on four of PIP-II’s five cryomodule types. The strong-back technology connects each accelerator cavity to a common frame rather than to its neighbor, as is typical. This structure keeps the cavities cold yet anchored to a room-temperature frame for easier alignment, less vibration and easy assembly.

    PIP2IT’s SSR1 cryomodule is built on a strong back, and ongoing tests are validating the concept. This will be only the second time the technology is being applied on a superconducting accelerator, so rigorous validation is essential.

    As the heart of the Fermilab accelerator chain, the PIP-II accelerator is designed to route beams of different patterns of particles to different experiments. For example, it could send every third packet of protons to experiment A while sending every first and fourth packet to experiment B. To deliver the required beam patterns to multiple users, the PIP-II front end includes a system called a chopper, which can remove or let pass through packets of protons according to a preprogrammed pattern. Incredibly, this fast chopper can remove one packet without affecting its neighbor — only six nanoseconds apart. That minuscule time interval is about 10 million times shorter than the flicker of time between movie frames.

    The PIP-II team plans to implement machine learning to facilitate this flexible beam delivery. With the adaptation of computer code used at another accelerator — SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory’s LCLS-II X-ray laser — the PIP-II’s complicated sort-and-ship process will take about a 10th of the time it would take to set up the accelerator and route beam manually. The PIP2IT algorithm tests are a first step in minimizing human intervention in PIP-II operation.

    PIP2IT will also be used to validate a battery of lower-risk systems, including those that power the accelerator, protect the machine and diagnose the beam. Many of these components are contributions from international partners, such as India, who also lend their valuable expertise to the accelerator project.

    “It was wonderful to learn that PIP2IT has reached 7.5 million electronvolts by accelerating beam through the first SSR1 cavity, which is powered by an amplifier developed by Bhabha Atomic Research Center of the Indian Department of Atomic Energy,” said Srinivas Krishnagopal, technical coordinator of the Indian Institutions and Fermilab Collaboration at the Bhabha Atomic Research Center. BARC is contributing nine amplifiers to the SSR1 cryomodule. “We look forward to the time when all of our amplifiers are installed and powered up and beam is accelerated through all the SSR1 cavities — including the one that was made in India. The smooth commissioning is testimony to the strength and depth of the Indian Institutions and Fermilab Collaboration.”

    The Indian Institutions and Fermilab Collaboration is a partnership focused on high-power superconducting proton accelerator technologies.

    “This first accelerated beam is a testament to the seamless integration of partner deliverables and the power of international partnership and collaboration,” Merminga said.

    The PIP-II accelerator beam operation is planned to start in the late 2020s.


    How will Fermilab’s new accelerator propel particles close to the speed of light?

    See the full here.


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    FNAL Icon

    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. Fermilab is America’s premier laboratory for particle physics and accelerator research, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. Thousands of scientists from universities and laboratories around the world
    collaborate at Fermilab on experiments at the frontiers of discovery.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:10 pm on October 19, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "The scientists who are hoping for a supernova", , , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, , ,   

    From University of Chicago: “The scientists who are hoping for a supernova” 

    U Chicago bloc

    From University of Chicago

    1
    Only once before have scientists detected the neutrinos emitted by a supernova: During SN 1987A (bright star at center), detectors spotted only about two dozen neutrino interactions. The exploding star was in the Large Magellanic Cloud, 240 times more distant from Earth than Betelguese.
    Credit: European Southern Observatory.

    If star on Orion’s shoulder goes supernova, Fermilab experiment will collect data bonanza.

    In late 2019, Betelgeuse, the star that forms the left shoulder of the constellation Orion, began to noticeably dim, prompting speculation of an imminent supernova. If it exploded, this cosmic neighbor a mere 700 light-years from Earth would be visible in the daytime for weeks. Yet 99% of the energy of the explosion would be carried not by light, but by neutrinos, ghost-like particles that rarely interact with other matter.

    If Betelgeuse does go supernova soon, detecting the emitted neutrinos would “dramatically enhance our understanding of what’s going on deep inside the core of a supernova,” said Sam McDermott, a theorist with the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

    It’s impossible to predict exactly when a star will go supernova. But McDermott and scientists around the world are hoping that it happens when we finally have the right ears to listen to it—the revolutionary Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, hosted by UChicago-affiliated Fermilab and planned to begin operation in the late 2020s.

    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA.

    SURF DUNE LBNF Caverns at Sanford Lab.

    DUNE’s far detector—an enormous tank of liquid argon at the Sanford Underground Research Facility in South Dakota—will pick up signals left by neutrinos beamed from Fermilab as well as those arriving from space. A supernova would represent a treasure trove of such neutrinos.

    SURF-Sanford Underground Research Facility, Lead, South Dakota, USA.

    FNAL DUNE Argon tank at SURF.

    If a supernova occurs tens of thousands of light-years away, DUNE would likely detect a few thousand neutrinos. Because of Betelgeuse’s relative proximity, however, scientists expect DUNE to detect around a million neutrinos if the red supergiant explodes in the coming decades, offering a bonanza of data.

    Although the light from the Betelgeuse supernova would linger for weeks, the burst of neutrinos would last only minutes.

    Preparing for a data onslaught

    “Imagine you’re in the forest, and there’s a meadow and there’s fireflies, and it’s the time of night where thousands of them come out,” said Georgia Karagiorgi, a physicist at Columbia University who leads the data selection team at DUNE. “If we could see neutrino interactions with our bare eyes, that’s kind of what it would look like in the DUNE detector.”

    The detector will not directly photograph incoming neutrinos. Rather, it will track the paths of charged particles generated when the neutrinos interact with argon atoms. In most experiments, neutrino interactions will be rare enough to avoid confusion about which neutrino caused which interaction and at what time. But during the Betelgeuse supernova, so many neutrinos arriving so quickly could present a challenge in the data analysis — similar to tracking a single firefly in a meadow teeming with the insects.

    “To remove ambiguities, we rely on light information that we get promptly as soon as the interaction takes place,” Karagiorgi said. Combining the light signature and the charge signature would allow researchers to distinguish when and where each neutrino interaction occurs.

    From there, the researchers would reconstruct how the types, or flavors, and energies of incoming neutrinos varied with time. The resulting pattern could then be compared against theoretical models of the dynamics of supernovae. And it could shed light on the still-unknown masses of neutrinos or reveal new ways that neutrinos interact with each other.

    Of course, astronomers who hope for Betelgeuse to go supernova are also interested in the light generated by the star explosion.

    Lighting the beacons

    When complete, DUNE will join the Supernova Early Warning System (SNEWS), a network of neutrino detectors around the world designed to automatically send an alert when a supernova is in progress in our galaxy. Since neutrinos pass through a supernova unimpeded, while particles of light are continually absorbed and reemitted until reaching the surface, the burst of neutrinos arrives at Earth hours before the light does—hence the early warning.

    SNEWS has never sent out an alert. Although hundreds of supernovae are observed each year, the most recent one close enough to Earth for its neutrinos to be detected occurred in 1987, more than a decade before SNEWS came online. Based on other observations, astronomers expect a supernova to occur in our galaxy several times per century on average.

    “If we run DUNE a few decades, we have pretty good odds of seeing one, and we could extract a lot of science out of it,” said Alec Habig, a physicist at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, who coordinates SNEWS and is involved with data acquisition on DUNE. “So let’s make sure we can do it.”

    Given the enormous radius of the red supergiant, Habig said, DUNE would detect neutrinos from Betelgeuse up to 12 hours before light from the explosion reaches Earth, giving astronomers plenty of time to point their telescopes at Orion’s shoulder.

    Continuing observations of Betelgeuse suggest that its recent dimming was a sign of its natural variability, not an impending supernova. Current estimates give the star up to 100,000 years to live.

    But if scientists get lucky, “an explosion at Betelgeuse would be an amazing opportunity,” McDermott said, “and DUNE would be an incredible machine for the job.”

    See the full article here .

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    U Chicago Campus

    An intellectual destination

    One of the world’s premier academic and research institutions, the University of Chicago has driven new ways of thinking since our 1890 founding. Today, UChicago is an intellectual destination that draws inspired scholars to our Hyde Park and international campuses, keeping UChicago at the nexus of ideas that challenge and change the world.

    The University of Chicago is an urban research university that has driven new ways of thinking since 1890. Our commitment to free and open inquiry draws inspired scholars to our global campuses, where ideas are born that challenge and change the world.

    We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of original ideas. Students in the College develop critical, analytic, and writing skills in our rigorous, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars, and become the next generation of leaders in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.

    UChicago research has led to such breakthroughs as discovering the link between cancer and genetics, establishing revolutionary theories of economics, and developing tools to produce reliably excellent urban schooling. We generate new insights for the benefit of present and future generations with our national and affiliated laboratories: Argonne National Laboratory, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

    The University of Chicago is enriched by the city we call home. In partnership with our neighbors, we invest in Chicago’s mid-South Side across such areas as health, education, economic growth, and the arts. Together with our medical center, we are the largest private employer on the South Side.

    In all we do, we are driven to dig deeper, push further, and ask bigger questions—and to leverage our knowledge to enrich all human life. Our diverse and creative students and alumni drive innovation, lead international conversations, and make masterpieces. Alumni and faculty, lecturers and postdocs go on to become Nobel laureates, CEOs, university presidents, attorneys general, literary giants, and astronauts.

     
  • richardmitnick 10:43 am on October 3, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, , , , , ,   

    From Science Magazine: “With to-do list checked off, U.S. physicists ask, ‘What’s next?’” 

    From Science Magazine

    Oct. 2, 2020
    Adrian Cho

    SURF-Sanford Underground Research Facility, Lead, South Dakota, USA.


    1
    Physicists at the Stanford Underground Research Facility assemble the heart of the Lux-Zeplin dark matter detector, which will hold 7 tons of liquid xenon. Credit: Matthew Kapust/Sanford Underground Research Facility.

    LZ xenon detector in the Surface Assembly Lab cleanroom at SURF

    As U.S. particle physicists contemplate their future, they find themselves victims of their own surprising success. Seven years ago, the often fractious community hammered out its current research road map and rallied around it. Thanks to that unity—and generous budgets—the Department of Energy (DOE), the field’s main U.S. sponsor, has already started on almost every project on the list.

    So next week, as U.S. particle physicists start to drum up new ideas for the next decade in a yearlong Snowmass process—named for the Colorado ski resort where such planning exercises once took place—they have no single big project to push for (or against). And in some subfields, the next steps seem far less obvious than they were 10 years ago. “We have to be much more open minded about what particle physics and fundamental physics are,” says Young-Kee Kim of the University of Chicago and chair of the American Physical Society’s division of particles and fields, which is sponsoring the planning exercise.

    Ten years ago, the U.S. particle physics community was in disarray. The high-energy frontier had passed to CERN, the European particle physics laboratory near Geneva where, in 2012, the world’s biggest atom smasher, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), blasted out the long-sought Higgs boson, the last piece in particle physicists’ standard model. Some physicists wanted the United States to build a huge experiment to fire elusive particles called neutrinos long distances through Earth to study how they “oscillate”—morph from one of their three types to another—as they zip along. Others wanted the United States to help push for the next big collider.

    CERN FCC Future Circular Collider details of proposed 100km-diameter successor to LHC.


    China Circular Electron Positron Collider (CEPC) map. It would be housed in a hundred-kilometer- (62-mile-) round tunnel at one of three potential sites. The documents work under the assumption that the collider will be located near Qinhuangdao City around 200 miles east of Beijing.


    ILC schematic, being planned for the Kitakami highland, in the Iwate prefecture of northern Japan.

    Those tensions came to a head during the last Snowmass effort in 2013, and the subsequent deliberations of the particle physics project prioritization panel (P5), which wrote the road map. U.S. researchers agreed to build the neutrino experiment, but make it bigger and better by inviting international partners. They also decided to continue to participate fully in the LHC, and to pursue a variety of smaller projects at home. The next collider would have to wait. Most important, DOE officials warned, the squabbling and backstabbing had to stop. In fact, physicists recall, the 2013 process had an informal motto: “Bickering scientists get nothing.”

    Physicists have just started to build the current plan’s centerpiece. The Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF) at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) in Illinois will shoot the particles through 1300 kilometers of rock to the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) in South Dakota, a detector filled with 40,000 tons of frigid liquid argon. LBNF/DUNE, which should come on in 2026, aims to be the definitive study of neutrino oscillations and whether they differ between neutrinos and antineutrinos, which could help explain how the universe generated more matter than antimatter.

    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA.


    SURF DUNE LBNF Caverns at Sanford Lab.

    “The angst in the neutrino community is a lot lower than it was last time around,” says Kate Scholberg, a neutrino physicist at Duke University. “The DUNE program will be going on at least into the 2030s.” However, researchers are already thinking of upgrades to the $2.6 billion experiment, she notes.

    In other areas, the future looks less certain. The last time around, for example, scientists had a pretty clear path forward in their search for particles of dark matter—the so-far-unidentified stuff that appears to pervade the galaxies and bind them with its gravity. Researchers had built small underground detectors that searched for the signal of weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs), the leading dark matter candidate, bumping into atomic nuclei. The obvious plan was to expand the detectors to the ton scale.

    Now, two multiton WIMP detectors are under construction. But so far WIMPs haven’t shown up, and scaling up that technology further “is probably not going to work very well anymore,” says Marcelle Soares-Santos, a physicist at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. “So we need to think a little bit more out of the box.” Researchers are now contemplating a hunt for other types of dark matter particles, using new detectors that exploit quantum mechanical effects to achieve exquisite levels of sensitivity.

    A perennial question for the field is what the next great particle collider will be. The obvious need is for one that fires electrons into positrons to crank out copious Higgs bosons and study their properties in detail, says Meenakshi Narain, a physicist at Brown University. But possible designs vary. Physicists in Japan are discussing such a Higgs factory in the form of a 30-kilometer-long linear electron-positron collider. Meanwhile, CERN has begun a study of an 80- to 100-kilometer circular collider. China has plans for a similar circular collider.

    However, Vladimir Shiltsev, an accelerator physicist at Fermilab, says those aren’t the only potential options. “The real picture is much murkier.” Snowmass organizers have received at least 16 different proposals for colliders, including one that would smash together muons—heavier, unstable cousins of electrons—and another that would use photons. Snowmass participants should consider all options, Shiltsev says.

    Joe Lykken, Fermilab’s deputy director for research, suggests physicists could even push for DOE to support a massive experiment that has nothing to do with particles: a next-generation detector of gravitational waves, ripples in spacetime set off when massive objects such as black holes spiral into each other. Their discovery in 2015 by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) opened a new window on the universe.

    LIGO consists of two L-shaped optical instruments with arms 4 kilometers long in Louisiana and Washington; it was built by the National Science Foundation. The next generation of ground-based detectors could be 10 times as big, and might better fit DOE, which specializes in scientific megaprojects, Lykken says. “It starts to sound like the kind of thing that the DOE would be interested in and maybe required for,” he says.

    During the coming year, Snowmass participants will air the more than 2000 ideas researchers have already proffered in two-page summaries. Then, a new P5 will formulate a new plan. Whatever ideas scientists come up with, to execute their new plan they’ll have to maintain the harmony that in recent years has made their planning process an exemplar to other fields. “Being unified is the new norm for us,” quips Jim Siegrist, DOE’s associate director for high energy physics. “So we have to continue to keep a lid on divisiveness and that’ll be a challenge.”

    MIT /Caltech Advanced aLigo .

    Caltech/MIT Advanced aLigo detector installation Livingston, LA, USA.

    Caltech/MIT Advanced aLigo detector installation Hanford, WA, USA.

    VIRGO Gravitational Wave interferometer, near Pisa, Italy.

    VIRGO Gravitational Wave interferometer, near Pisa, Italy.

    See the full article here.


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  • richardmitnick 8:39 am on June 30, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, , ,   

    From Sanford Underground Research Facility: “Crews create a blast to take the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment to the next stage” 

    SURF logo

    From Sanford Underground Research Facility


    Homestake Mining Company

    June 25, 2020
    Lauren Biron and Leah Hesla [FNAL]

    Initial blast marks beginning of excavation for the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility which will house DUNE.

    Surf-Dune/LBNF Caverns at Sanford

    1
    Excavation activities for the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility began with first blast on June 23. Workers inspect the space cleared by the blast 3,650 feet below ground at the Sanford Underground Research Facility in South Dakota. They will eventually excavate hundreds of thousands of tons of rock to make way for the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, hosted by Fermilab, and LBNF, which is the infrastructure that supports and houses the experiment. Photo courtesy Kiewit Alberici Joint Venture

    It started with a blast.

    On June 23, construction company Kiewit Alberici Joint Venture set off explosives 3,650 feet beneath the surface in Lead, South Dakota, to begin creating space for the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, hosted by the Department of Energy’s Fermilab.


    The blast is the start of underground excavation activity for the experiment, known as DUNE, and the infrastructure that powers and houses it, called the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility, or LBNF.

    Situated a mile deep in South Dakota rock at the Sanford Underground Research Facility, DUNE’s giant particle detector will track the behavior of fleeting particles called neutrinos.

    FNAL DUNE Argon tank at SURF

    The plan for the next three years, is that workers will blast and drill to remove 800,000 tons of rock to make a home for the gigantic detector and its support systems.

    “The start of underground blasting for these early excavation activities marks not only the initiation of the next major phase of this work, but significant progress on the construction already under way to prepare the site for the experiment,” said Fermilab Deputy Director for LBNF/DUNE-US Chris Mossey.

    The excavation work begins with removing 3,000 tons of rock 3,650 feet below ground. This initial step carves out a station for a massive drill whose bore is as wide as a car is long, about four meters.

    The machine will help create a 1,200-foot ventilation shaft down to what will be the much larger cavern for the DUNE particle detector and associated infrastructure. There, 4,850 feet below the surface — about 1.5 kilometers deep — the LBNF project will remove hundreds of thousands of tons of rock, roughly the weight of eight aircraft carriers.

    The emptied space will eventually be filled with DUNE’s enormous and sophisticated detector, a neutrino hunter looking for interactions from one of the universe’s most elusive particles. Researchers will send an intense beam of neutrinos from Fermilab in Illinois to the underground detector in South Dakota – straight through the earth, no tunnel necessary – and measure how the particles change their identities. What they learn may answer one of the biggest questions in physics: Why does matter exist instead of nothing at all?

    “The worldwide particle physics community is preparing in various ways for the day DUNE comes online, and this week, we take the material step of excavating rock to support the detector,” said DUNE spokesperson Stefan Söldner-Rembold of the University of Manchester. “It’s a wonderful example of collaboration: While excavation takes place in South Dakota, DUNE partners around the globe are designing and building the parts for the DUNE detector.”

    A number of science experiments already take data at Sanford Underground Research Facility, but no activity takes place at the 3650 level. With nothing and no one in the vicinity, the initial excavation stage to create the cavern for the drill proceeds in an isolated environment. It’s also an opportunity for the LBNF construction project to gather information about matters such as air flow and the rock’s particular response to the drill-and-blast technique before moving on to the larger excavation at the 4850 level, where the experiment will be built.

    “It was important for us to develop a plan that would allow the LBNF excavation to go forward without disrupting the experiments already going on in other parts of the 4850 level,” said Fermilab Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility Far-Site Conventional Facilities Manager Joshua Willhite. Following a period of excavation at the 3650 level, the project will initiate excavation at the 4850 level.

    Every bit of the 800,000 tons of rock dislodged by the underground drill-and-blast operation must eventually be transported a mile back up to the surface. There, a conveyor is being built to transport the crushed rock over a stretch of 4,200 feet for final deposit in the Open Cut, an enormous open pit mining area excavated in the 1980s. As large as the LBNF excavation will be, the rock moved to the surface and deposited in the Open Cut will only fill less than one percent of it.

    Excavation at the 3650 level will be completed over the next few months, with blasting at the 4850 level planned to begin immediately after.

    Learn more about the science of the DUNE experiment at http://www.lbnf-dune.fnal.gov.

    Work on LBNF and DUNE is supported by the DOE Office of Science and international partners in more than 30 countries.

    Fermilab is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit science.energy.gov.

    See the full article here .


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    About us.
    The Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota, advances our understanding of the universe by providing laboratory space deep underground, where sensitive physics experiments can be shielded from cosmic radiation. Researchers at the Sanford Lab explore some of the most challenging questions facing 21st century physics, such as the origin of matter, the nature of dark matter and the properties of neutrinos. The facility also hosts experiments in other disciplines—including geology, biology and engineering.

    The Sanford Lab is located at the former Homestake gold mine, which was a physics landmark long before being converted into a dedicated science facility. Nuclear chemist Ray Davis earned a share of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2002 for a solar neutrino experiment he installed 4,850 feet underground in the mine.

    Homestake closed in 2003, but the company donated the property to South Dakota in 2006 for use as an underground laboratory. That same year, philanthropist T. Denny Sanford donated $70 million to the project. The South Dakota Legislature also created the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority to operate the lab. The state Legislature has committed more than $40 million in state funds to the project, and South Dakota also obtained a $10 million Community Development Block Grant to help rehabilitate the facility.

    In 2007, after the National Science Foundation named Homestake as the preferred site for a proposed national Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL), the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority (SDSTA) began reopening the former gold mine.

    In December 2010, the National Science Board decided not to fund further design of DUSEL. However, in 2011 the Department of Energy, through the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, agreed to support ongoing science operations at Sanford Lab, while investigating how to use the underground research facility for other longer-term experiments. The SDSTA, which owns Sanford Lab, continues to operate the facility under that agreement with Berkeley Lab.

    The first two major physics experiments at the Sanford Lab are 4,850 feet underground in an area called the Davis Campus, named for the late Ray Davis. The Large Underground Xenon (LUX) experiment is housed in the same cavern excavated for Ray Davis’s experiment in the 1960s.

    LBNL LZ project at SURF, Lead, SD, USA, will replace LUX at SURF

    In October 2013, after an initial run of 80 days, LUX was determined to be the most sensitive detector yet to search for dark matter—a mysterious, yet-to-be-detected substance thought to be the most prevalent matter in the universe. The Majorana Demonstrator experiment, also on the 4850 Level, is searching for a rare phenomenon called “neutrinoless double-beta decay” that could reveal whether subatomic particles called neutrinos can be their own antiparticle. Detection of neutrinoless double-beta decay could help determine why matter prevailed over antimatter. The Majorana Demonstrator experiment is adjacent to the original Davis cavern.

    LUX’s mission was to scour the universe for WIMPs, vetoing all other signatures. It would continue to do just that for another three years before it was decommissioned in 2016.

    In the midst of the excitement over first results, the LUX collaboration was already casting its gaze forward. Planning for a next-generation dark matter experiment at Sanford Lab was already under way. Named LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ), the next-generation experiment would increase the sensitivity of LUX 100 times.

    SLAC physicist Tom Shutt, a previous co-spokesperson for LUX, said one goal of the experiment was to figure out how to build an even larger detector.
    “LZ will be a thousand times more sensitive than the LUX detector,” Shutt said. “It will just begin to see an irreducible background of neutrinos that may ultimately set the limit to our ability to measure dark matter.”
    We celebrate five years of LUX, and look into the steps being taken toward the much larger and far more sensitive experiment.

    Another major experiment, the Long Baseline Neutrino Experiment (LBNE)—a collaboration with Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) and Sanford Lab, is in the preliminary design stages. The project got a major boost last year when Congress approved and the president signed an Omnibus Appropriations bill that will fund LBNE operations through FY 2014. Called the “next frontier of particle physics,” LBNE will follow neutrinos as they travel 800 miles through the earth, from FermiLab in Batavia, Ill., to Sanford Lab.

    FNAL LBNE/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA


    LBNE

    U Washington Majorana Demonstrator Experiment at SURF

    The MAJORANA DEMONSTRATOR will contain 40 kg of germanium; up to 30 kg will be enriched to 86% in 76Ge. The DEMONSTRATOR will be deployed deep underground in an ultra-low-background shielded environment in the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, SD. The goal of the DEMONSTRATOR is to determine whether a future 1-tonne experiment can achieve a background goal of one count per tonne-year in a 4-keV region of interest around the 76Ge 0νββ Q-value at 2039 keV. MAJORANA plans to collaborate with GERDA for a future tonne-scale 76Ge 0νββ search.

    CASPAR at SURF


    CASPAR is a low-energy particle accelerator that allows researchers to study processes that take place inside collapsing stars.

    The scientists are using space in the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, South Dakota, to work on a project called the Compact Accelerator System for Performing Astrophysical Research (CASPAR). CASPAR uses a low-energy particle accelerator that will allow researchers to mimic nuclear fusion reactions in stars. If successful, their findings could help complete our picture of how the elements in our universe are built. “Nuclear astrophysics is about what goes on inside the star, not outside of it,” said Dan Robertson, a Notre Dame assistant research professor of astrophysics working on CASPAR. “It is not observational, but experimental. The idea is to reproduce the stellar environment, to reproduce the reactions within a star.”

     
  • richardmitnick 8:53 am on May 26, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, , ,   

    From Sanford Underground Research Facility: ‘Why DUNE? [Part III] Shedding light on the unification of nature’s forces” 

    SURF logo

    From Sanford Underground Research Facility


    Homestake Mining Company

    May 22, 2020
    Erin Broberg

    Part III in our series exploring the science goals of the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment [image below].

    1
    The Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) could help us learn more about physics beyond the Standard Model. Courtesy Fermilab

    Master theoretical physicists laid the foundations of the Standard Model throughout the second half of the twentieth century. With outstanding success, it explained how particles like protons, neutrons and electrons interact on a subatomic level. It also made Nobel Prize-winning predictions about new particles, such as the Higgs Boson, that were later observed in experiments. For decades, the Standard Model has been the scaffolding on which physicists drape quantum concepts from magnetism to nuclear fusion.

    Despite its remarkable dexterity and longevity, however, some physicists have described the Standard Model as “incomplete,” “ugly” and, in some instances, even “grotesque.”

    “The Standard Model is an effective theory, but we are not satisfied,” said Chang Kee Jung, a professor of physics at Stony Brook University. “Physicists, in some sense, are perfectionists. We always want to know exactly why things work a certain way.” While the Standard Model is incredibly useful, it is far from perfect.

    2
    A portion of the Lagrangian standard model transcribed by T.D. Gutierrez. Courtesy Symmetry Magazine.

    Standard Model of Particle Physics, Quantum Diaries

    In a bewildering example, the Standard Model predicted that neutrinos, the universe’s most abundant particle, would be massless. In 1998, the Super-Kamiokande experiment in Japan caught the Standard Model in a lie.

    Super-Kamiokande experiment. located under Mount Ikeno near the city of Hida, Gifu Prefecture, Japan

    Neutrinos do indeed have mass, albeit very little. Further complicating matters, the Standard Model doesn’t explain dark matter or dark energy; combined, these account for 95 percent of the universe. In other cases, the Standard Model requires physicists to begrudgingly plug in arbitrary parameters to reflect experimental data.

    Unwilling to ignore these flaws, physicists are looking for a new, more perfect model of the subatomic universe. And many are hoping that the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, hosted by the Department of Energy’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, can put their theories to the test.

    Grander theories of the quantum world

    Leading alternatives to the Standard Model attempt to unify the three quantum forces: strong, weak and electromagnetic. Physicists have demonstrated that, at extremely high energies, the weak and electromagnetic force become indistinguishable. Many believe that the strong force can be unified in the same way.

    “Grand unification is the beautiful idea that there was a single force at the beginning of the universe, and what we see now is three manifestations of that original force,” said Jonathan Lee Feng, particle and cosmology theorist at the University of California, Irvine. This class of “Grand Unified Theories” is charmingly abbreviated as “GUTs.”

    In their search for a GUT, theorists have been a bit too successful. They haven’t created just one alternative to the Standard Model—they’ve created hundreds. These models unify quantum forces, explain the mass of a neutrino and eliminate many arbitrary parameters. Some are practical and bare-boned, others far-fetched and elaborate, but nearly all are mathematically solid.

    Even so, they can’t all be “right.”

    “You can write a logically and mathematically consistent theory, but that doesn’t mean it matches the real mechanisms of the universe,” Jung said. “Nature chooses its own way.”

    Testing physics beyond the Standard Model

    GUTs are a major branch of theory. But others also attempt to reshape our understanding of the universe. Surrounded by more models than could possibly be correct, theorists around the world are asking the universe for a nudge in the right direction.

    Just as the Standard Model predicted novel particles in the twentieth century that were later discovered through experimentation, new theories also predict never-before-seen phenomena. Some models predict the decay of a particle once thought immortal. Others hint at a fourth generation of neutrino. Still others foretell of particles that communicate between our realm and the realm of dark matter.

    “We can continue to speculate and refine these models, but if we actually witnessed one of these predictions, we’d have much more precise hints about where to go,” Feng said.

    Enter DUNE. The main goal of the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment is to keep a watchful eye on a beam of neutrinos traveling from Fermilab to detectors deep under the earth at Sanford Underground Research Facility. However, the experiment is also designed to be sensitive to a slew of interactions predicted by avant-garde theories. The observation of even one of these predictions would rule out dozens of theories and guide the next generation of quantum theory.

    Tuned to witness quantum strangeness

    Proton decay

    The Standard Model dictates that protons—basic building blocks of matter best known for how they clump with neutrons in the center of an atom—are stable particles, destined to live forever.

    However, many Grand Unified Theories have predicted that, eventually, protons will decay. While different models disagree on the specific mechanisms that cause this decay, the general consensus is that proton decay is a good place to start investigating physics beyond the Standard Model.

    To validate these theories, physicists just have to glimpse the death of a proton.

    In the early 1950s, Maurice Goldhaber, an esteemed physicist who later directed Brookhaven National Laboratory, postulated that protons live at least 10^16 years. If their lifespan were any shorter, the radiation from frequent decays would destroy the human body. Thus, Goldhaber said, you could “feel it in your bones” that the proton was long-lived. Over time, experiments determined that protons lifetime was even longer—at least 10^34 years.

    According to current estimates, you would have to watch one proton for a minimum of 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 years—without blinking—in order to see it decay. Sensible physicists aren’t quite that patient.

    By watching a multitude of protons at once, researchers can greatly increase their chances of seeing a decay within their own lifetime (and still be alive to receive the Nobel Prize for their discovery). DUNE detectors will monitor 40,000 tons of liquid argon.

    FNAL DUNE Argon tank at SURF

    Each atom of argon contains 18 protons. If one out of this incredible number of protons decays during DUNE’s lifetime, it will show up in DUNE’s data.

    “If a proton decay is discovered, it is a revolutionary discovery—a once-in-a-generation discovery,” said Jung, who has played various leadership roles in DUNE.

    An invisible neutrino

    Neutrinos are subatomic particles; waiflike, abundant and neutral, they hardly interact with normal matter at all. DUNE is designed to monitor how neutrinos oscillate, or change between three different types of neutrino, as they stream through the Earth. But DUNE could also see something extra hidden in its data.

    “In the Standard Model, there are three types of neutrino: the electron neutrino, the muon neutrino and the tau neutrino. But why is there not a fourth generation? Why not five? What stops it at three? That is not known,” Jung said.

    There are subatomic hints of another type of neutrino, called a sterile neutrino, that interacts even less than the other known types. If it exists, the only way it could be measured is the way in which it joins the oscillation pattern of neutrinos, disrupting the pattern physicists expect to see.

    4
    There are subatomic hints of another type of neutrino, called a sterile neutrino, that interacts even less than the other known types. Courtesy Fermilab.

    “If what we see doesn’t match our three-flavor oscillation pattern, it will tell us a lot about what is incomplete about our understanding of the universe,” said Elizabeth Worcester, DUNE physics co-coordinator and physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory. “It could point to the existence of sterile neutrinos, a new interaction or even some other crazy thing we haven’t thought of yet. It would take some untangling to understand what the data is really telling us.”

    Investigating dark matter

    Dark matter is a mysterious, invisible source of matter responsible for holding vast galaxies together. Although not directly tied to theories of unification, the long-standing mystery of dark matter transcends the Standard Model. And depending on its true characteristics, DUNE could be the first to detect it.

    “Dark matter is an enormous question in our field,” said Feng, who has worked on a specific dark matter theory, called WIMP theory, for 22 years. “There is a lot of interesting creative work being done in theory, but hints from experiments like DUNE would be really helpful.”

    According to WIMP theory, dark matter is composed of weakly interacting, massive particles (WIMPs). If these particles exist, some of them are expected to pass through the Sun. There, they would interact with other particles, losing energy and sinking into the Sun’s core. Over time, enough WIMPs would gravitate toward the Sun’s core that they would annihilate with each other and release high-energy neutrinos in all directions. As you might guess, DUNE would be ready to detect these neutrinos. Researchers could reconstruct their trajectory, tracing them back to the Sun and, indirectly, to the WIMPs that produced them.
    ________________________________________________
    Dark Matter Background
    Fritz Zwicky discovered Dark Matter in the 1930s when observing the movement of the Coma Cluster., Vera Rubin a Woman in STEM denied the Nobel, did most of the work on Dark Matter.

    Fritz Zwicky from http:// palomarskies.blogspot.com

    Coma cluster via NASA/ESA Hubble

    In modern times, it was astronomer Fritz Zwicky, in the 1930s, who made the first observations of what we now call dark matter. His 1933 observations of the Coma Cluster of galaxies seemed to indicated it has a mass 500 times more than that previously calculated by Edwin Hubble. Furthermore, this extra mass seemed to be completely invisible. Although Zwicky’s observations were initially met with much skepticism, they were later confirmed by other groups of astronomers.

    Thirty years later, astronomer Vera Rubin provided a huge piece of evidence for the existence of dark matter. She discovered that the centers of galaxies rotate at the same speed as their extremities, whereas, of course, they should rotate faster. Think of a vinyl LP on a record deck: its center rotates faster than its edge. That’s what logic dictates we should see in galaxies too. But we do not. The only way to explain this is if the whole galaxy is only the center of some much larger structure, as if it is only the label on the LP so to speak, causing the galaxy to have a consistent rotation speed from center to edge.

    Vera Rubin, following Zwicky, postulated that the missing structure in galaxies is dark matter. Her ideas were met with much resistance from the astronomical community, but her observations have been confirmed and are seen today as pivotal proof of the existence of dark matter.

    Astronomer Vera Rubin at the Lowell Observatory in 1965, worked on Dark Matter (The Carnegie Institution for Science)


    Vera Rubin measuring spectra, worked on Dark Matter (Emilio Segre Visual Archives AIP SPL)


    Vera Rubin, with Department of Terrestrial Magnetism (DTM) image tube spectrograph attached to the Kitt Peak 84-inch telescope, 1970. https://home.dtm.ciw.edu

    The Vera C. Rubin Observatory currently under construction on the El Peñón peak at Cerro Pachón Chile, a 2,682-meter-high mountain in Coquimbo Region, in northern Chile, alongside the existing Gemini South and Southern Astrophysical Research Telescopes.

    LSST Data Journey, Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Ana Kova


    ________________________________________________

    While Feng hasn’t given up on WIMPs, he has recently started working on another dark matter theory that involves light dark matter particles. This theory predicts that, in addition to looking for dark matter directly, we could also learn more about dark matter through so-called “mediator particles.”

    “If you imagine we could talk to dark matter on the phone, mediator particles would be the wire that connects us to it,” Feng said. If this theory is accurate, mediator particles could potentially be created as by-products in Fermilab’s particle accelerator and show themselves in one of DUNE’s detectors.

    Whatever its true characteristics, dark matter might reveal itself in DUNE, offering clues to yet another universe-sized mystery.

    Looking where the light is

    “There are other interactions beyond the Standard Model that DUNE could be sensitive to,” Worcester said. “Spontaneous neutron-antineutron oscillation, nonstandard interactions, exotic things like Lorentz violation, which would mean that almost all theory is broken.” The list goes on. “If it feels like a grab bag, that’s because it is.”

    Worcester likens DUNE’s multifaceted approach to the streetlamp effect. If you drop your keys on a dark street, you look under the streetlamp to find them. They may not be within the beam of light created by the streetlamp, but you have no hope of finding the keys in the darkness. So, you look where the light is.

    When researchers are attempting to look beyond what is known, advanced experiments like DUNE become their streetlamps, casting puddles of light onto unfamiliar physics.

    “It could be that some answers are still in the dark, but if we keep creating sophisticated experiments, we’ll find them,” Worcester said.

    So, why DUNE? Amidst its search for the origin of matter and supernovas on the galactic horizon, DUNE will also shine a bright light on physics beyond the Standard Model.

    See the full article here .


    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings
    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    About us.
    The Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota, advances our understanding of the universe by providing laboratory space deep underground, where sensitive physics experiments can be shielded from cosmic radiation. Researchers at the Sanford Lab explore some of the most challenging questions facing 21st century physics, such as the origin of matter, the nature of dark matter and the properties of neutrinos. The facility also hosts experiments in other disciplines—including geology, biology and engineering.

    The Sanford Lab is located at the former Homestake gold mine, which was a physics landmark long before being converted into a dedicated science facility. Nuclear chemist Ray Davis earned a share of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2002 for a solar neutrino experiment he installed 4,850 feet underground in the mine.

    Homestake closed in 2003, but the company donated the property to South Dakota in 2006 for use as an underground laboratory. That same year, philanthropist T. Denny Sanford donated $70 million to the project. The South Dakota Legislature also created the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority to operate the lab. The state Legislature has committed more than $40 million in state funds to the project, and South Dakota also obtained a $10 million Community Development Block Grant to help rehabilitate the facility.

    In 2007, after the National Science Foundation named Homestake as the preferred site for a proposed national Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL), the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority (SDSTA) began reopening the former gold mine.

    In December 2010, the National Science Board decided not to fund further design of DUSEL. However, in 2011 the Department of Energy, through the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, agreed to support ongoing science operations at Sanford Lab, while investigating how to use the underground research facility for other longer-term experiments. The SDSTA, which owns Sanford Lab, continues to operate the facility under that agreement with Berkeley Lab.

    The first two major physics experiments at the Sanford Lab are 4,850 feet underground in an area called the Davis Campus, named for the late Ray Davis. The Large Underground Xenon (LUX) experiment is housed in the same cavern excavated for Ray Davis’s experiment in the 1960s.

    LBNL LZ project at SURF, Lead, SD, USA, will replace LUX at SURF

    In October 2013, after an initial run of 80 days, LUX was determined to be the most sensitive detector yet to search for dark matter—a mysterious, yet-to-be-detected substance thought to be the most prevalent matter in the universe. The Majorana Demonstrator experiment, also on the 4850 Level, is searching for a rare phenomenon called “neutrinoless double-beta decay” that could reveal whether subatomic particles called neutrinos can be their own antiparticle. Detection of neutrinoless double-beta decay could help determine why matter prevailed over antimatter. The Majorana Demonstrator experiment is adjacent to the original Davis cavern.

    LUX’s mission was to scour the universe for WIMPs, vetoing all other signatures. It would continue to do just that for another three years before it was decommissioned in 2016.

    In the midst of the excitement over first results, the LUX collaboration was already casting its gaze forward. Planning for a next-generation dark matter experiment at Sanford Lab was already under way. Named LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ), the next-generation experiment would increase the sensitivity of LUX 100 times.

    SLAC physicist Tom Shutt, a previous co-spokesperson for LUX, said one goal of the experiment was to figure out how to build an even larger detector.
    “LZ will be a thousand times more sensitive than the LUX detector,” Shutt said. “It will just begin to see an irreducible background of neutrinos that may ultimately set the limit to our ability to measure dark matter.”
    We celebrate five years of LUX, and look into the steps being taken toward the much larger and far more sensitive experiment.

    Another major experiment, the Long Baseline Neutrino Experiment (LBNE)—a collaboration with Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) and Sanford Lab, is in the preliminary design stages. The project got a major boost last year when Congress approved and the president signed an Omnibus Appropriations bill that will fund LBNE operations through FY 2014. Called the “next frontier of particle physics,” LBNE will follow neutrinos as they travel 800 miles through the earth, from FermiLab in Batavia, Ill., to Sanford Lab.

    FNAL LBNE/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA


    LBNE

    U Washington Majorana Demonstrator Experiment at SURF

    The MAJORANA DEMONSTRATOR will contain 40 kg of germanium; up to 30 kg will be enriched to 86% in 76Ge. The DEMONSTRATOR will be deployed deep underground in an ultra-low-background shielded environment in the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, SD. The goal of the DEMONSTRATOR is to determine whether a future 1-tonne experiment can achieve a background goal of one count per tonne-year in a 4-keV region of interest around the 76Ge 0νββ Q-value at 2039 keV. MAJORANA plans to collaborate with GERDA for a future tonne-scale 76Ge 0νββ search.

    CASPAR at SURF


    CASPAR is a low-energy particle accelerator that allows researchers to study processes that take place inside collapsing stars.

    The scientists are using space in the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, South Dakota, to work on a project called the Compact Accelerator System for Performing Astrophysical Research (CASPAR). CASPAR uses a low-energy particle accelerator that will allow researchers to mimic nuclear fusion reactions in stars. If successful, their findings could help complete our picture of how the elements in our universe are built. “Nuclear astrophysics is about what goes on inside the star, not outside of it,” said Dan Robertson, a Notre Dame assistant research professor of astrophysics working on CASPAR. “It is not observational, but experimental. The idea is to reproduce the stellar environment, to reproduce the reactions within a star.”

     
  • richardmitnick 10:17 am on October 16, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "A partnership turns to neutrinos", About a third of the scientists who have participated in MINERvA since its inception in 2002 have come from countries in Latin America., FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, FNAL Short Baseline Neutrino Detector, Latin American participation in neutrino research at Fermilab remains strong with the detectors that make up the lab’s Short Baseline Neutrino program (SBN), Latin American participation in neutrino research at Fermilab will continue in the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) hosted by Fermilab., MINERvA collaboration, ,   

    From Symmetry: “A partnership turns to neutrinos” 

    Symmetry Mag
    From Symmetry<

    10/16/19
    Caitlyn Buongiorno

    A collaboration with fewer than 100 members has played an important role in Fermilab’s ongoing partnership with Latin American scientists and institutions.

    1
    Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Pedro Rivas

    On the 12th floor of Wilson Hall, the central high-rise building at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory outside Chicago, sit the offices and cubicles occupied by members of the MINERvA collaboration.

    The MINERvA experiment—which studies how particles called neutrinos and their antimatter counterparts, antineutrinos, interact with different types of materials—finished collecting data in late February. But there is still analysis left to complete.

    Scientists at Fermilab use the MINERvA to make measurements of neutrino interactions that can support the work of other neutrino experiments. Photo Reidar Hahn

    The area is mostly quiet, but occasionally a conversation will carry down the hall, sometimes in English, sometimes in Spanish or Portuguese.

    About a third of the scientists who have participated in the experiment since its inception in 2002 have come from countries in Latin America. Collaborating institutions include Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PUCP); the National University of Engineering in Peru; the Federico Santa María Technical University in Chile; the University of Guanajuato in Mexico; and the Brazilian Center for Research in Physics (CBPF). The Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Insititute (CINVESTAV) in Mexico also recently joined MINERvA. More than 45 students from those institutions have earned or are in the process of earning a degree on the experiment—and some have even earned more than one.

    The make-up of the experiment is in some ways a continuation of an effort begun by former Fermilab director and Nobel laureate Leon Lederman to reach out to physicists in Latin America. Most of the Latin American physicists who came to Fermilab in 1970s worked on accelerator-based experiments in specialized particle beam lines or at the laboratory’s particle collider, the Tevatron. Although many of them have moved on to similar experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, new generations of Latin American scientists are still coming to Fermilab, many of them to study neutrinos.

    The large contingent of Latin American scientists on the MINERvA neutrino experiment has added a bilingual component to communication at Fermilab, both in announcing new results and in speaking with potential future physicists. And although MINERvA’s detector operation has come to an end, the partnership between Latin American institutions and Fermilab in neutrino research has only begun.

    2
    Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Pedro Rivas

    New life for an old partnership

    Neutrinos are the most abundant matter particles in the universe. The nuclear fusion that causes the sun and other stars to shine is constantly producing them, as are other nuclear and subatomic processes. Despite this abudance, neutrinos are difficult to study because they rarely interact with other matter, which makes them hard to detect. About 100 trillion neutrinos pass through each person every second, day and night.

    Physicist Wolfgang Pauli first postulated the existence of the neutrino in 1930 to explain an apparent anomaly in some types of nuclear decay. Since then scientists have learned much about these elusive partices.

    Neutrinos come in three types, called flavors. The 2015 Nobel Prize was split between two scientists from the Super-Kamiokande experiment in Japan and Sudbury Neutrino Observatory in Canada, who in 1998 and 2001 showed that neutrinos change flavors as they move through the universe.

    Super-Kamiokande experiment. located under Mount Ikeno near the city of Hida, Gifu Prefecture, Japan

    Sudbury Neutrino Observatory, , no longer operating

    The discovery had the surprising implication that neutrinos have at least a small amount of mass—something not predicted in the Standard Model of particle physics. Scientists still do not know where that mass comes from.

    Understanding neutrinos could answer important questions about our galaxy and the universe. Neutrinos could play a vital role in the explosions of supernovae, which help galaxies form. They could also have played a role in what our universe is made of: Although the Big Bang should have produced an equal amount of matter and antimatter, which should have annihilated one another completely, somehow we exist in a universe dominated by matter.

    The MINERvA experiment is an intermediate step, designed to answer the questions scientists need to ask before they can tackle those big mysteries: What happens when a neutrino interacts with the massive nucleus of an atom? What technology should scientists use to study these strange particles? What should they know about how they interact with different types of materials inside the detectors they might build? Prior to MINERvA, there was no experiment designed to use different materials placed in the same neutrino beamline to determine the best models of how neutrinos and antineutrinos interact with the nuclei of different atoms.

    Founding co-spokespersons Jorge Morfín and Kevin McFarland first proposed MINERvA in 2002. The experiment was approved for construction in 2007 with support from the US Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

    The MINERvA detector includes a series of hexagonal plates made of different solid materials and tanks of water and liquid helium, each one in the path of the neutrino beam. The active part of the detector is made of solid scintillator. Scientists built it at Fermilab about 100 meters underground, shielded from the interference of cosmic rays raining down from space, in the path of the world’s most intense beams of muon neutrinos and antineutrinos.

    Morfín appreciated Lederman’s early efforts to partner with scientists in Latin America and decided to pick up the mantle of keeping those relationships going. Going country by country in 2005, he reached out to the contacts he’d made through working on other experiments at Fermilab. Gradually he convinced a group of Latin American scientists to join MINERvA, and to bring their students with them.

    MINERvA started taking data in 2010. Over its nine years of operation, the experiment thoroughly mapped out neutrino interactions with polystyrene, carbon, iron, lead, water and helium.

    “The Latin American students and collaborators, analyzing an array of physics topics, have been essential in determining how neutrinos interact with these nuclei,” Morfín says. “And the benefits go both ways.”

    Taking part in this crucial step for future neutrino experiments has given students who started their careers on MINERvA a clear path forward.

    José Bazo, now an associate professor at PUCP, was one of the first students on MINERvA. When he and fellow students joined the collaboration, the detector was still under construction, so they spent a one-year stint performing simulations. These simulations tested different theoretical models of how the neutrinos fired at the MINERvA detector would collide, depending on the design of the neutrino beam.

    By joining MINERvA at the beginning, Bazo and his colleagues were able to shape how the experiment was set up.

    MINERvA has continued to provide foundational learning experiences like these for students throughout the years.

    Barbara Yaeggy of Chile’s Federico Santa María Technical University first joined the MINERvA collaboration in 2016. She says that at that time, she was overwhelmed. Prior to MINERvA, Yaeggy had only ever worked on theoretical physics, so she’d never had to consider the ins and outs of working with a real-life detector.

    “It took me a long time to feel like I had a good idea of what I was doing,” she says. “But eventually you realize that the senior scientists don’t expect you to be an expert. They want you to develop ideas, take action and ask questions.”

    3
    Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Pedro Rivas

    Sharing the science

    In 2013 MINERvA released its first scientific result—with a twist. For the first time, a Fermilab experiment added a summary of its result written in Spanish. (MINERvA scientists now also write summaries in Portuguese.)

    “We wanted to make sure that the people in Latin America and Spanish-speakers in the US would get the important physics in their language,” Morfín says. “And the words are coming from Latin American students on MINERvA.”

    Those students have also been instrumental in reaching out to Spanish-speaking communities in the United States, near Fermilab.

    Since 2016 Fermilab scientist Minerba Betancourt, from Venezuela, has worked with an organization called “Dare to Dream” to bring middle school girls to Fermilab for an annual Latina STEM conference. These conferences enable the young girls to meet STEM professionals such as the students and scientists on MINERvA, who share their experiences through a Q&A, hands-on activities and a lab tour, given in Spanish.

    The tour enables the girls and their parents, who may not speak English, to easily follow along, says Betancourt, who began regularly speaking English herself only after arriving in the United States for graduate school. “Plus, they see us as an example,” she says of the parents. “They see how the girls can be in the future.”

    Betancourt sees it as an important opportunity for the young girls—and for the young scientists who work with them. The scientists are given the chance to teach and to practice their science communication skills.

    In 2017, Fermilab also began offering a biennial Spanish-language version of its monthly “Ask a Scientist” program, in which scientists volunteer to chat with visitors to the laboratory about their science.

    4
    Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Pedro Rivas

    Continuing the trend

    MINERvA hasn’t been the only force drawing Latin American researchers to Fermilab. Around the same time that Morfín began approaching Latin American institutions to collaborate on MINERvA, Fermilab theorist Marcela Carena, from Argentina, began a student program in the Fermilab Theory Department. Since the program’s inception, 15 students from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Peru have gotten involved in theoretical physics at Fermilab.

    And even though the MINERvA experiment has finished collecting data, Latin American participation in neutrino research at Fermilab remains strong with the detectors that make up the lab’s Short Baseline Neutrino program (SBN) as well as the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE), hosted by Fermilab.

    FNAL Short Baseline Neutrino Detector [SBND]

    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA

    Scientists on SBN will use three detectors, placed at locations within 600 meters from the source of Fermilab’s second neutrino beamline, to study how neutrinos oscillate. Data collected by SBN will help scientists determine whether there are actually more than three types of neutrino, as some previous experiments have hinted.

    Mexico’s Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute has joined the SBN collaboration. And Betancourt says she is encouraging members of the MINERvA collaboration to join as well. “I find the start of an experiment to be the most exciting,” she says. “And SBN will begin within the next year.”

    Building the detectors for SBN will also help scientists prepare for Fermilab’s upcoming flagship experiment, DUNE.

    DUNE will study the properties of neutrinos using a new Fermilab neutrino beamline and detectors placed both at a short distance, similar to SBN, and at a much longer one: DUNE’s “far detectors” will be located 1300 kilometers (about 800 miles) away from the laboratory in a former mine turned high-tech underground laboratory called the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota.

    SURF-Sanford Underground Research Facility, Lead, South Dakota, USA

    SURF DUNE LBNF Caverns at Sanford Lab

    The four far detector modules, each 62 meters long and as high as a five-story building, will be the largest neutrino detectors ever built in the United States.

    All of the Latin America-based institutions involved with MINERvA have already signed on to participate. “DUNE is now the fruit of all these efforts,” Morfín says. “There is now a concerted effort within Latin American countries to fully contribute to the success of DUNE.”

    Perhaps among the young scientists who participate in SBN and DUNE will be the future advocates who will keep the relationships between Fermilab and Latin American institutions alive for generations to come.

    See the full article here .


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    Symmetry is a joint Fermilab/SLAC publication.


     
  • richardmitnick 9:14 am on October 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "LBNF completes upgrade to Far Site’s underground ventilation system", , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, ,   

    From Sanford Underground Research Facility: “LBNF completes upgrade to Far Site’s underground ventilation system” 

    SURF logo
    Sanford Underground levels

    From Sanford Underground Research Facility


    Homestake Mining Company

    Upgrades to the Oro Hondo Fan undertaken in preparation for LBNF construction and, ultimately, DUNE science.

    September 27, 2019
    Erin Broberg

    1
    A crane lowers the prefabricated E-House containing the new Variable Frequency Drive onto a concrete slab near the Oro Hondo Shaft along Kirk Road, with the Sanford Underground Research Facility’s Ross Headframe in the background. Photo courtesy Joshua Willhite, Fermilab

    Several projects are underway at Sanford Underground Research Facility (Sanford Lab) to improve the reliability of the facility’s infrastructure. Crews are improving the facility for its role as the Far Site for Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory’s Long Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF) , which will house the largest physics experiment on United States soil: The Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) [below].

    The LBNF project recently completed an upgrade of the Oro Hondo Fan, replacing its variable frequency drive (VFD). The Oro Hondo Fan is the main ventilation fan for the underground facility and is located on the surface along Kirk Road near Lead. This upgrade, completed with the support of Sanford Lab and four local contractors, ensures dependable ventilation in the underground spaces at Sanford Lab.

    “This project puts a modern, reliable VFD in control of the Oro Hondo Fan’s motor,” said Mike Headley, executive director of Sanford Lab.

    The project included the removal of the former VFD and the stick-built structure that housed it. These were replaced by a prefabricated Electrical House (E-House) and VFD, specifically designed for use at the Oro Hondo Shaft.

    2
    This prefabricated E-House contains a new Variable Frequency Drive which will control power to the Oro Hondo Fan. This is the primary fan for underground ventilation at the Sanford Underground Research Facility, the Far Site for the Long Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF), which will house the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE). Photo courtesy Joshua Willhite, Fermilab

    At Sanford Lab, air comes underground via the Yates and Ross Shafts and is drawn horizontally and vertically through a matrix of underground passageways or drifts. The air current is then drawn up to the surface through the two exhaust shafts, the Oro Hondo Shaft and #5 Shaft. When exhaust fans spin in the Oro Hondo Shaft and #5 Shaft, they draw fresh air through this underground circuit.

    As the main exhaust shaft for Sanford Lab’s underground ventilation system, the Oro Hondo Shaft’s fan is responsible for most of the underground’s fresh air current. The new VFD is connected to a 3,000 horsepower AC motor and will draw an average of 220,000 cubic feet of fresh air per minute through the Oro Hondo Shaft alone.

    Josh Willhite, Fermilab’s LBNF conventional facilities manager for the work in South Dakota, explained that this upgrade increases the reliability of the underground ventilation system; such dependability is critical for future LBNF excavation and construction, as well as DUNE science.

    “With the use of diesel-powered excavation equipment, followed by world class science underground, we need to make sure there is no preventable disruption to airflow or to our work,” said Willhite.

    “Other experiments will benefit from this upgrade as well as it pulls in more fresh air through these ventilation systems,” said Headley.

    Local contractors, including Border States Electric, RCS Construction, Muth Electric and Elite Industrial, participated in the upgrade project.

    “As is always the case when coordinating these efforts with Sanford Lab, the coordination and integration of all parties has been very good,” said Willhite.

    DUNE, which is hosted by Fermilab, will consist of two neutrino detectors placed in the world’s most intense neutrino beam. One detector will record particle interactions near the source of the beam, at Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois.

    FNAL DUNE Near Detector

    A second, much larger, detector will be installed more than a kilometer underground at Sanford Lab—1,300 kilometers downstream of the source. These detectors will enable scientists to search for new subatomic phenomena and potentially transform our understanding of neutrinos and their role in the universe.

    The Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility will provide the neutrino beamline and the infrastructure that will support the DUNE detectors. Funding for the LBNF construction prep work comes from the Department of Energy Office of Science.

    See the full article here .


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    About us.
    The Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota, advances our understanding of the universe by providing laboratory space deep underground, where sensitive physics experiments can be shielded from cosmic radiation. Researchers at the Sanford Lab explore some of the most challenging questions facing 21st century physics, such as the origin of matter, the nature of dark matter and the properties of neutrinos. The facility also hosts experiments in other disciplines—including geology, biology and engineering.

    The Sanford Lab is located at the former Homestake gold mine, which was a physics landmark long before being converted into a dedicated science facility. Nuclear chemist Ray Davis earned a share of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2002 for a solar neutrino experiment he installed 4,850 feet underground in the mine.

    Homestake closed in 2003, but the company donated the property to South Dakota in 2006 for use as an underground laboratory. That same year, philanthropist T. Denny Sanford donated $70 million to the project. The South Dakota Legislature also created the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority to operate the lab. The state Legislature has committed more than $40 million in state funds to the project, and South Dakota also obtained a $10 million Community Development Block Grant to help rehabilitate the facility.

    In 2007, after the National Science Foundation named Homestake as the preferred site for a proposed national Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL), the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority (SDSTA) began reopening the former gold mine.

    In December 2010, the National Science Board decided not to fund further design of DUSEL. However, in 2011 the Department of Energy, through the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, agreed to support ongoing science operations at Sanford Lab, while investigating how to use the underground research facility for other longer-term experiments. The SDSTA, which owns Sanford Lab, continues to operate the facility under that agreement with Berkeley Lab.

    The first two major physics experiments at the Sanford Lab are 4,850 feet underground in an area called the Davis Campus, named for the late Ray Davis. The Large Underground Xenon (LUX) experiment is housed in the same cavern excavated for Ray Davis’s experiment in the 1960s.

    LBNL LZ project at SURF, Lead, SD, USA, will replace LUX at SURF

    In October 2013, after an initial run of 80 days, LUX was determined to be the most sensitive detector yet to search for dark matter—a mysterious, yet-to-be-detected substance thought to be the most prevalent matter in the universe. The Majorana Demonstrator experiment, also on the 4850 Level, is searching for a rare phenomenon called “neutrinoless double-beta decay” that could reveal whether subatomic particles called neutrinos can be their own antiparticle. Detection of neutrinoless double-beta decay could help determine why matter prevailed over antimatter. The Majorana Demonstrator experiment is adjacent to the original Davis cavern.

    LUX’s mission was to scour the universe for WIMPs, vetoing all other signatures. It would continue to do just that for another three years before it was decommissioned in 2016.

    In the midst of the excitement over first results, the LUX collaboration was already casting its gaze forward. Planning for a next-generation dark matter experiment at Sanford Lab was already under way. Named LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ), the next-generation experiment would increase the sensitivity of LUX 100 times.

    SLAC physicist Tom Shutt, a previous co-spokesperson for LUX, said one goal of the experiment was to figure out how to build an even larger detector.
    “LZ will be a thousand times more sensitive than the LUX detector,” Shutt said. “It will just begin to see an irreducible background of neutrinos that may ultimately set the limit to our ability to measure dark matter.”
    We celebrate five years of LUX, and look into the steps being taken toward the much larger and far more sensitive experiment.

    Another major experiment, the Long Baseline Neutrino Experiment (LBNE)—a collaboration with Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) and Sanford Lab, is in the preliminary design stages. The project got a major boost last year when Congress approved and the president signed an Omnibus Appropriations bill that will fund LBNE operations through FY 2014. Called the “next frontier of particle physics,” LBNE will follow neutrinos as they travel 800 miles through the earth, from FermiLab in Batavia, Ill., to Sanford Lab.

    FNAL LBNE/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA


    LBNE

    U Washington Majorana Demonstrator Experiment at SURF

    The MAJORANA DEMONSTRATOR will contain 40 kg of germanium; up to 30 kg will be enriched to 86% in 76Ge. The DEMONSTRATOR will be deployed deep underground in an ultra-low-background shielded environment in the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, SD. The goal of the DEMONSTRATOR is to determine whether a future 1-tonne experiment can achieve a background goal of one count per tonne-year in a 4-keV region of interest around the 76Ge 0νββ Q-value at 2039 keV. MAJORANA plans to collaborate with GERDA for a future tonne-scale 76Ge 0νββ search.

    CASPAR at SURF


    CASPAR is a low-energy particle accelerator that allows researchers to study processes that take place inside collapsing stars.

    The scientists are using space in the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, South Dakota, to work on a project called the Compact Accelerator System for Performing Astrophysical Research (CASPAR). CASPAR uses a low-energy particle accelerator that will allow researchers to mimic nuclear fusion reactions in stars. If successful, their findings could help complete our picture of how the elements in our universe are built. “Nuclear astrophysics is about what goes on inside the star, not outside of it,” said Dan Robertson, a Notre Dame assistant research professor of astrophysics working on CASPAR. “It is not observational, but experimental. The idea is to reproduce the stellar environment, to reproduce the reactions within a star.”

     
  • richardmitnick 12:37 pm on August 1, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Powered by pixels", , ArgonCube, , , , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, , Liquid-argon neutrino detectors, , University of Bern in Switzerland   

    From FNAL via Symmetry: “Powered by pixels” 

    FNAL Art Image
    FNAL Art Image by Angela Gonzales

    From Fermi National Accelerator Lab , an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    via

    Symmetry Mag
    Symmetry

    08/01/19
    Lauren Biron

    An innovative use of pixel technology is making liquid-argon neutrino detectors even better.

    1
    Dan Dwyer and Sam Kohn

    It’s 2019. We want our cell phones fast, our computers faster and screens so crisp they rival a morning in the mountains. We’re a digital society, and blurry photos from potato-cameras won’t cut it for the masses. Physicists, it turns out, aren’t any different — and they want that same sharp snap from their neutrino detectors.

    Cue ArgonCube: a prototype detector under development that’s taking a still-burgeoning technology to new heights with a plan to capture particle tracks worthy of that 4K TV. The secret at its heart? It’s all about the pixels.

    But let’s take two steps back. Argon is an element that makes up about 1 percent of that sweet air you’re breathing. Over the past several decades, the liquid form of argon has grown into the medium of choice for neutrino detectors. Neutrinos are those pesky fundamental particles that rarely interact with anything but could be the key to understanding why there’s so much matter in the universe.

    Big detectors full of cold, dense argon provide lots of atomic nuclei for neutrinos to bump into and interact with — especially when accelerator operators are sending beams containing trillions of the little things. When the neutrinos interact, they create showers of other particles and lights that the electronics in the detector capture and transform into images.

    Each image is a snapshot that captures an interaction by one of the most mysterious, flighty, elusive particles out there; a particle that caused Wolfgang Pauli, upon proposing it in 1930, to lament that he thought experimenters would never be able to detect it.

    2
    Scientists are testing the ArgonCube technology in a prototype constructed at the University of Bern in Switzerland. James Sinclair
    7
    9

    Current state-of-the-art liquid-argon neutrino detectors — big players like MicroBooNE, ICARUS and ProtoDUNE — use wires to capture the electrons knocked loose by neutrino interactions.

    FNAL/MicrobooNE

    FNAL/ICARUS

    Cern ProtoDune


    CERN Proto Dune

    Vast planes of thousands of wires crisscross the detectors, each set collecting coordinates that are combined by algorithms into 3-D reconstructions of a neutrino’s interaction.

    These setups are effective, well-understood and a great choice for big projects — and you don’t get much bigger than the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment hosted by Fermilab.

    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA


    SURF-Sanford Underground Research Facility, Lead, South Dakota, USA

    DUNE will examine how the three known types of neutrinos change as they travel long distances, further exploring a phenomenon called neutrino oscillations. Scientists will send trillions of neutrinos from Fermilab every second on a 1,300-kilometer journey through the earth — no tunnel needed — to South Dakota. DUNE will use wire chambers in some of the four enormous far detector modules, each one holding more than 17,000 tons of liquid argon.

    But scientists also need to measure the beam of neutrinos as it leaves Fermilab, where the DUNE near detector will be close to the neutrino source and see more interactions.

    “We expect the beam to be so intense that you will have a dozen neutrino interactions per beam pulse, and these will all overlap within your detector,” says Dan Dwyer, a scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory who works on ArgonCube. Trying to disentangle a huge number of events using the 2-D wire imaging is a challenge. “The near detector will be a new range of complexity.”

    And new complexity, in this case, means developing a new kind of liquid-argon detector.

    3
    This rough diagram of an ArgonCube detector module was drawn by Knut Skarpaas. James Sinclair.

    Pixel me this

    People had thought about making a pixelated detector before, but it never got off the ground.

    “This was a dream,” says Antonio Ereditato, father of the ArgonCube collaboration and a scientist at the University of Bern in Switzerland. “We developed this original idea in Bern, and it was clear that it could fly only with the proper electronics. Without it, this would have been just wishful thinking. Our colleagues from Berkeley had just what was required.”

    Pixels are small, and neutrino detectors aren’t. You can fit roughly 100,000 pixels per square meter. Each one is a unique channel that — once it is outfitted with electronics — can provide information about what’s happening in the detector. To be sensitive enough, the tiny electronics need to sit right next to the pixels inside the liquid argon. But that poses a challenge.

    “If they used even the power from your standard electronics, your detector would just boil,” Dwyer says. And a liquid-argon detector only works when the argon remains … well, liquid.

    4
    Dan Dwyer points out features of the pixelated electronics. Roman Berner.

    So Dwyer and ASIC engineer Carl Grace at Berkeley Lab proposed a new approach: What if they left each pixel dormant?

    “When the signal arrives at the pixel, it wakes up and says, ‘Hey, there’s a signal here,’” Dwyer explains. “Then it records the signal, sends it out and goes back to sleep. We were able to drastically reduce the amount of power.”

    At less than 100 microwatts per pixel, this solution seemed like a promising design that wouldn’t turn the detector into a tower of gas. They pulled together a custom prototype circuit and started testing. The new electronics design worked.

    The first test was a mere 128 pixels, but things scaled quickly. The team started working on the pixel challenge in December 2016. By January 2018 they had traveled with their chips to Switzerland, installed them in the liquid-argon test detector built by the Bern scientists and collected their first 3-D images of cosmic rays.

    For the upcoming installation at Fermilab, collaborators will need even more electronics. The next step is to work with manufacturers in industry to commercially fabricate the chips and readout boards that will sustain around half a million pixels. And Dwyer has received a Department of Energy Early Career Award to continue his research on the pixel electronics, complementing the Swiss SNSF grant for the Bern group.

    “We’re trying to do this on a very aggressive schedule — it’s another mad dash,” Dwyer says. “We’ve put together a really great team on ArgonCube and done a great job of showing we can make this technology work for the DUNE near detector. And that’s important for the physics, at the end of the day.”

    5
    Samuel Kohn, Gael Flores, and Dan Dwyer work on ArgonCube technology at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
    Marilyn Chung, LBNL

    More innovations ahead

    While the pixel-centered electronics of ArgonCube stand out, they aren’t the only technological innovations that scientists are planning to implement for the upcoming near detector of DUNE. There’s research and development on a new kind of light detection system and new technology to shape the electric field that draws the signal to the electronics. And, of course, there are the modules.

    Most liquid-argon detectors use a large container filled with the argon and not too much else. The signals drift long distances through the fluid to the long wires strung across one side of the detector. But ArgonCube is going for something much more modular, breaking the detector up into smaller units still contained within the surrounding cryostat. This has certain perks: The signal doesn’t have to travel as far, the argon doesn’t have to be as pure for the signal to reach its destination, and scientists could potentially retrieve and repair individual modules if required.

    “It’s a little more complicated than the typical, wire-based detector,” says Min Jeong Kim, who leads the team at Fermilab working on the cryogenics and will be involved with the mechanical integration of the ArgonCube prototype test stand. “We have to figure out how these modules will interface with the cryogenic system.”

    That means figuring out everything from filling the detector with liquid argon and maintaining the right pressure during operation to properly filtering impurities from the argon and circulating the fluid around (and through) the modules to maintain an even temperature distribution.

    6
    Researchers assemble components in the test detector at the University of Bern.
    James Sinclair

    The ArgonCube prototype under assembly at the University of Bern will run until the end of the year before being shipped to Fermilab and installed 100 meters underground, making it the first large prototype for DUNE sent to Fermilab and tested with neutrinos. After working out its kinks, researchers can finalize the design and build the full ArgonCube detector.

    Additional instrumentation and components such as a gas-argon chamber and a beam spectrometer will round out the near detector.

    It’s an exciting time for the 100-some physicists from 23 institutions working on ArgonCube — and for the more than 1,000 neutrino physicists from over 30 countries working on DUNE. What started as wishful thinking has become a reality — and no one knows how far the pixel technology might go.

    Ereditato even dreams of replacing the design of one of the four massive DUNE far detector modules with a pixelated version. But one thing at a time, he says.

    “Right now we’re concentrating on building the best possible near detector for DUNE,” Ereditato says. “It’s been a long path, with many people involved, but the liquid-argon technology is still young. ArgonCube technology is the proof that the technique has the potential to perform even better in the future.”

    See the full article here .


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    Symmetry is a joint Fermilab/SLAC publication.


    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. Fermilab is America’s premier laboratory for particle physics and accelerator research, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. Thousands of scientists from universities and laboratories around the world
    collaborate at Fermilab on experiments at the frontiers of discovery.

     
  • richardmitnick 2:37 pm on May 11, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "How an episode of ‘Chopped’ led to a fix for future particle accelerators", Fermilab scientist designs innovative spun-sugar electrospinning technique, , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE,   

    From University of Chicago: “How an episode of ‘Chopped’ led to a fix for future particle accelerators” 

    U Chicago bloc

    From University of Chicago

    May 10, 2019
    Caitlyn Buongiorno

    Fermilab scientist designs innovative spun-sugar electrospinning technique.


    1
    In electrospinning, a positive charge is applied to liquidized material to create thin strands that eventually harden into a solid, fibrous material. Photo by Reidar Hahn

    Bob Zwaska, a scientist at the UChicago-affiliated Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, was watching a contestant on the cooking show Chopped spin sugar for their dessert when he realized the same principle might be applicable to accelerator targets.

    The technique he spun out of the idea could hugely boost the power at which future particle accelerators could operate—helping us unlock the secrets of how our universe is built.

    One of the ways particle accelerators produce particles is by firing particle beams at targets. These targets are stationary, solid blocks of material, such as graphite or beryllium. When the beam collides with the target, it produces a spray of particles that can inform scientists about the fundamental building blocks of the universe.

    For example, the pioneering international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, or DUNE, an experiment hosted by Fermilab and developed in collaboration with more than 170 institutions worldwide, seeks to understand why matter exists in the universe by unlocking the mysteries of ghostly particles called neutrinos.

    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA

    But the experiment is limited by how much the targets can handle; to solve these mysteries, the accelerator beam used by DUNE needs to reach a power of at least 1.2 megawatts—twice the amount current targets can handle.

    The point of collision between the beam and the target—an area significantly smaller than the target itself, varying between the size of an ant and the graphite in a mechanical pencil—as rapidly and repeatedly heated to above 500 degrees Celsius. This heat causes that tiny area to try to expand, but because the currently used targets are solid, there’s no room for expansion. Instead, the hot spot pushes against the surrounding area over and over again, like a jackhammer. This has the potential to damage the target.

    When you dive into a pool, your collision with the water causes waves to ripple across the surface. When the waves reach the edge of the pool, they will rebound and cross over other waves, either destroying each other or combining to make a larger wave. In a pool, if a wave gets too large, the water can simply splash over the edge. In a solid target, however, if a wave gets too big, the material will crack.

    At the Fermilab particle accelerator’s current beam intensities, this isn’t a problem, because targets can withstand the resulting waves for a long time. As Fermilab upgrades its accelerator complex and the intensity increases, that endurance time drops drastically.

    “Worldwide, there is a push for higher-intensity machines to create rare particles. These targets have sometimes been the sole limiting factor in the performance of such facilities,” Zwaska said. “So, to research areas of new physics, we have to be pushing for new technologies to confront this problem.”

    A new spin

    Tasked with coming up with an alternative target to use in high-powered accelerators, like the ones that will send beam to DUNE, Zwaska envisioned a target that consists of many twists and turns to prevent any wave buildup. This sinuous target would also be strong and solid at the microscale.

    He first tested graphite ropes, 3-D-printed fibers, and mostly hollow, reticulated solids before he stumbled upon the spun-sugar concept, which led him to electrospinning.

    First proposed in the early 1900s to produce thinner artificial silk, electrospinning has been used for air filtration in cars, wound dressing and pharmaceutical drugs. Like spinning sugar, electrospinning involves using a liquidized material to create thin strands that eventually harden into the desired structure. Instead of heating the liquid, electrospinning applies a positive charge to it. The charge on the liquid creates an attraction between it and a neutral plate, placed some distance away. This attraction stretches the material towards the plate, creating a solid, fibrous material.

    For accelerator targets, specialists turn metal or ceramic into a solid but porous material that consists of thousands of fiber strands less than a micrometer in diameter. That’s less than a hundredth the thickness of an average human hair, and about a third of a spider’s webbing.

    When the particle beam collides with an electrospun target, the fibers won’t propagate any waves. The lack of potentially material-damaging waves means that these targets can withstand much higher beam intensity.

    Instead of a pool, imagine you jump into a ball pit. Your collision will disrupt the arrangement of the balls immediately around you but leave the surrounding ones alone. The electrospun target acts the same way. The process leaves space between each fiber, allowing the fibers to expand uniformly, avoiding the jackhammer effect.

    Targeting better systems

    While this new technology potentially solves many of the issues with current targets, it has its own obstacles to overcome. Typically, the process to make an electrospun target takes days, with experts frequently having to stop to correct complications in the way the material accumulates.

    Sujit Bidhar, a postdoctoral researcher at Fermilab, is trying to address these issues. Bidhar is developing and testing methods that increase the number of fiber spin-off points that form at a single time, produce a thicker nanofiber target, and decrease the amount of electricity needed to create the positive charge. These advancements would both speed up and simplify the process.

    While he’s still trying different electrospinning techniques, Bidhar has already developed a new patent-pending electrospinning system, including a novel power supply.

    Bidhar’s electrospinning unit is more compact, more lightweight, simpler and cheaper than most conventional units.

    It’s also much safer to use due to its limited output power. Present commercial power supplies put out an amount of electric power that far exceeds what is needed to make electrospun targets. Bidhar’s power supply unit reduces the electric power output and overall unit size by half, which also makes it safer to use.

    “Medical personnel would be able to use this power supply to create biodegradable wound dressings in remote and mobile locations, without a bulky and high-voltage unit,” Bidhar said.

    Electrospun targets, like Bidhar’s power supply, could innovate the future of particle physics accelerators, allowing experiments such as DUNE to reach higher levels of beam intensity. These higher intensity beams will aid scientists in solving the enduring mysteries of astrophysics, nuclear physics and particle physics.

    See the full article here .

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    U Chicago Campus

    An intellectual destination

    One of the world’s premier academic and research institutions, the University of Chicago has driven new ways of thinking since our 1890 founding. Today, UChicago is an intellectual destination that draws inspired scholars to our Hyde Park and international campuses, keeping UChicago at the nexus of ideas that challenge and change the world.

    The University of Chicago is an urban research university that has driven new ways of thinking since 1890. Our commitment to free and open inquiry draws inspired scholars to our global campuses, where ideas are born that challenge and change the world.

    We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of original ideas. Students in the College develop critical, analytic, and writing skills in our rigorous, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars, and become the next generation of leaders in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.

    UChicago research has led to such breakthroughs as discovering the link between cancer and genetics, establishing revolutionary theories of economics, and developing tools to produce reliably excellent urban schooling. We generate new insights for the benefit of present and future generations with our national and affiliated laboratories: Argonne National Laboratory, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

    The University of Chicago is enriched by the city we call home. In partnership with our neighbors, we invest in Chicago’s mid-South Side across such areas as health, education, economic growth, and the arts. Together with our medical center, we are the largest private employer on the South Side.

    In all we do, we are driven to dig deeper, push further, and ask bigger questions—and to leverage our knowledge to enrich all human life. Our diverse and creative students and alumni drive innovation, lead international conversations, and make masterpieces. Alumni and faculty, lecturers and postdocs go on to become Nobel laureates, CEOs, university presidents, attorneys general, literary giants, and astronauts.

     
  • richardmitnick 4:27 pm on April 5, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "MINERvA successfully completes its physics run", , , FNAL LBNF/ DUNE, , , Neutrinos could hold the answer to one of the most pressing mysteries in physics: why matter was not completely annihilated by antimatter after the Big Bang., ,   

    From Fermi National Accelerator Lab: “MINERvA successfully completes its physics run” 

    FNAL Art Image
    FNAL Art Image by Angela Gonzales

    From Fermi National Accelerator Lab , an enduring source of strength for the US contribution to scientific research world wide.

    April 5, 2019
    Caitlyn Buongiorno

    FNAL MINERvA front face Photo Reidar Hahn

    On Feb. 26, a crowd of engineers, technicians and analysts crowded around a computer screen as Fermilab scientist Deborah Harris pressed “stop” on the data collection for the MINERvA neutrino experiment.

    “We’re all just really excited by what we’ve accomplished,” said Harris, MINERvA co-spokesperson and future professor at York University. “The detector worked wonderfully, we collected the data we need, and we did it on schedule.”

    MINERvA studies how neutrinos and their antimatter twins, antineutrinos, interact with the nuclei of different atoms. Scientists use that data to help discover the best models of these interactions. Now, after nine years of operation, the data taking has come to an end, but the analysis will continue for a while. MINERvA scientists have published more than 30 scientific papers so far, with more to come. As of today, 58 students have obtained their master’s or Ph.D. degrees doing research with this experiment.

    Neutrinos could hold the answer to one of the most pressing mysteries in physics: why matter was not completely annihilated by antimatter after the Big Bang. That imbalance from 13.7 billion years ago led the universe to develop into what we see today. Studying neutrinos (and antineutrinos) could uncover the mystery and help us understand why we are here at all.

    1
    The MINERvA collaboration gathers to celebrate the end of data taking. MINERvA co-spokesperson Laura Fields, kneeling at center, holds a 3-D-printed model of the MINERvA neutrino detector. Photo: Reidar Hahn

    A number of neutrino experiments investigate this mystery, including Fermilab’s NOvA experiment and the upcoming international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, hosted by Fermilab.

    FNAL/NOvA experiment map


    FNAL NOvA Near Detector

    FNAL LBNF/DUNE from FNAL to SURF, Lead, South Dakota, USA


    FNAL DUNE Argon tank at SURF


    SURF DUNE LBNF Caverns at Sanford Lab

    To be as successful as possible, these experiments need precise models that describe what happens before and after a neutrino collides with an atom.

    Every time a neutrino collides with part of an atom inside a detector, a spray of new particles flies off and travels through the rest of the detector. In order to understand the nuances of neutrinos, scientists need to know the energy of the neutrino when it first enters the detector and the energy of all the particles produced after the interaction. This task is complicated by the fact that some of the outgoing particles are invisible to the detector — and must still be accounted for.

    Imagine you’re playing pool and you shoot the cue ball at another ball. You can easily predict where that second ball will go. That prediction, however, gets much more complex when your cue ball strikes a collection of balls. After the break shot, they scatter in all directions, and it’s hard to predict where each will go. The same thing is true when a neutrino interacts with a lone particle: You can easily predict where the lone ball will go. But when a neutrino interacts with an atom’s nucleus — a collection of protons and neutrons — the calculation is much more difficult because, like the pool balls, particles may go off in many different directions.

    “It’s actually worse than that,” said Kevin McFarland, former MINERvA co-spokesperson and professor of physics at the University of Rochester. “All the balls in the break shot are also connected by springs.”

    MINERvA provides a neutrino-nucleus interaction guidebook for neutrino researchers. The experiment measured neutrino interactions with polystyrene, carbon, iron, lead, water and helium. Without MINERvA’s findings, researchers at other experiments would have a much tougher time understanding the outcomes of these interactions and how to interpret their data.

    “I really am proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish so far,” said Laura Fields, Fermilab scientist and co-spokesperson for MINERvA. “Already the world has a much greater understanding of these interactions.”

    See the full article here.


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    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. Fermilab is America’s premier laboratory for particle physics and accelerator research, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. Thousands of scientists from universities and laboratories around the world collaborate at Fermilab on experiments at the frontiers of discovery.

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