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  • richardmitnick 6:41 pm on March 11, 2014 Permalink | Reply
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    From SLAC: “SLAC Accelerator Physicists Help Make Sure ILC Will Hit Target” 

    March 7, 2014
    Lori Ann White

    An international team of scientists at Japan’s high-energy accelerator research facility KEK has successfully demonstrated a key component of a future high-power linear collider, such as the International Linear Collider (ILC) under consideration in Japan or the Compact Linear Accelerator (CLIC) being developed at the European facility CERN.

    ILC schematic


    The component, called the final focus optics, will help produce precise beams of particles at these future research facilities, said Glen White, the SLAC accelerator physicist who is lead author on a recent paper in Physical Review Letters.

    Optics for an accelerator that boosts charged particles to near light speed aren’t lenses in the typical sense of eyeglass lenses or magnifying lenses. Instead, “optics” refers to the magnets that steer the particles. The final focus optics for an accelerator are a sequence of powerful magnets that concentrate particles into tight beams. The optics demonstrated by the Accelerator Test Facility 2 (ATF2) focused an electron beam down to only a few tens of nanometers tall.

    This special sequence of magnets was developed by former SLAC accelerator physicists Andrei Seryi and Pantaleo Raimondi nearly 15 years ago. Many more SLAC physicists are members of the ATF2 collaboration, an international group of scientists that built and continue to test the structure at the KEK accelerator facility in Japan.

    The optics for a future linear collider must take many different issues into account, said White, including the physics and the economics of extremely energetic beams of tiny particles.

    For example, a magnet will focus charged particles that have slightly different energies to slightly different places.”No bunch of particles in an accelerator is perfectly uniform,” said White. Thus, the particles can “fuzz out” around the focal point, resulting in fewer collisions and less data, unless such differences in position, called chromatic aberrations, are accounted for.

    Previous methods for correcting chromatic aberration, such as those tested during the Final Focus Test Beam experiment at SLAC, required additional lengthy sections of tunnel for the magnets used, thus adding considerable cost, White said. The design the ATF2 collaboration tested involved adding magnets called sextupoles to the focusing magnets, called quadrupoles, already in use. “The sextupoles refocus the particles according to their positions, which are determined by their energies,” he said – essentially reversing the errors introduced by the quadrupoles.

    Sextupole electromagnet as used within the storage ring of the Australian Synchrotron to focus and steer the electron beam

    A quadrupole electromagnet as used in the storage ring of the Australian Synchrotron

    Seryi, who left SLAC in 2010 to become director of the John Adams Institute for Accelerator Science at Oxford University, is a member of the ATF2 collaboration. “It is extremely gratifying to see the idea realized in practice and know that it works,” he said. “I am also tremendously happy that the ATF2 experiment has trained many young accelerator physics experts. This was actually one of the goals – to create the team who will be able to work on the linear collider’s final focus when the real project starts.”

    Now that they know it works, said White, the next steps are to work on stabilizing the beam and train more young physicists for the real thing.

    See the full article here.

    SLAC Campus
    SLAC is a multi-program laboratory exploring frontier questions in photon science, astrophysics, particle physics and accelerator research. Located in Menlo Park, California, SLAC is operated by Stanford University for the DOE’s Office of Science.

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  • richardmitnick 12:20 pm on November 19, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    From CERN: “Test magnet reaches 13.5 tesla – a new CERN record” 

    CERN New Masthead

    18 Nov 2013
    Sarah Charley

    The Short Model Coil (SMC) programme tests new magnet technologies with magnets about 30 centimetres long. The technology developed in the SMC will eventually help engineers build more powerful magnets for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and future accelerators.

    A niobium-tin based magnet assembly forms part of the Short Model Coil project at CERN (Image: Maximilien Brice)

    Currently, the LHC uses niobium-titanium superconducting magnets to both bend and focus proton beams as they race around the LHC. But these magnets are not powerful enough to support stronger focusing and higher energies. So engineers are looking into a new superconducting material, niobium tin.

    “With the existing niobium-titanium technology, 8 tesla is about the maximum practical operation field,” says engineer Juan Carlos Perez, who is leading the SMC project. “The magnetic field you can produce thanks to the new material is at least 50% higher.”

    Niobium tin is a superconducting material that can generate a magnetic field in the range from 15-20 tesla. Although it was discovered before niobium titanium, it is not commonly used in accelerators because it is challenging to work with.

    “Niobium tin must be heat treated at high temperatures – about 650 0C – to form the superconducting phase, and becomes extremely brittle after the heat treatment,” says Perez. “The SMC project is developing technologies to master this material, working closely with US colleagues who are heavily invested in this technology.”

    Engineers working on the magnets for the high-luminosity upgrade of the LHC want to eventually reach magnetic fields exceeding 12 tesla, says Perez. These higher magnetic fields will allow significantly stronger bending and focusing strengths in the LHC dipoles and quadropoles.

    “Within the next 10 years we want to build a set of new ‘final-focus’ quadrupoles close to the LHC experiments, with higher strength, resulting in smaller beams at the LHC collision points” says Perez. “This will increase the number of collisions per second and generate more data for the experiments. In the longer term – over the next 20 years or so – niobium tin will be a key technology. It could allow engineers to increase the energy in a future circular collider by a factor five to ten times the present record at the LHC.”

    The present world record for niobium-tin magnets in dipole configuration is 16.1 tesla, held by an American research group at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The most recent CERN-built SMC, using a cable with a geometry very close to that of the 11 tesla dipoles presently under development, reached 13.5 tesla. “We still have a long way to go,” says Perez. “But the SMC project is a first and encouraging step in the right direction.”

    See the full article here.

    Meet CERN in a variety of places:

    Cern Courier



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  • richardmitnick 2:36 pm on September 30, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    From Brookhaven Lab: “Backup Magnets Ready to Ship to LHC” 

    Brookhaven Lab

    September 30, 2013
    Karen McNulty Walsh

    Physicists and engineers in Brookhaven National Laboratory’s Superconducting Magnet Division are in the final stages of assembling “replacement” magnets for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at Europe’s CERN laboratory. Brookhaven built twenty magnets already installed at the 17-mile circular collider—based on designs initially used for the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider here at Brookhaven. The replacements are intended to be on hand for as quick a switch as possible if they are needed. The Brookhaven team is also working on new magnet designs with improved capabilities for the LHC.

    Here is a short informative video.

    See the full article here.

    One of ten national laboratories overseen and primarily funded by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Brookhaven National Laboratory conducts research in the physical, biomedical, and environmental sciences, as well as in energy technologies and national security. Brookhaven Lab also builds and operates major scientific facilities available to university, industry and government researchers. The Laboratory’s almost 3,000 scientists, engineers, and support staff are joined each year by more than 5,000 visiting researchers from around the world.Brookhaven is operated and managed for DOE’s Office of Science by Brookhaven Science Associates, a limited-liability company founded by Stony Brook University, the largest academic user of Laboratory facilities, and Battelle, a nonprofit, applied science and technology organization.

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  • richardmitnick 1:10 pm on May 30, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    From Fermilab: “Smaller, more powerful test stand for superconducting cables at Fermilab” 

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

    Thursday, May 30, 2013
    Sarah Khan

    Testing key magnet components has become ever more important to Fermilab’s High-Field Magnet Program, especially since the recent development of an 11-Tesla superconducting magnet

    The Superconducting Strand and Cable R&D Group recently built a new superconducting cable test stand, located in Industrial Building 3a. Its transformer, made of coiled superconducting wire, is attached to the stand about two feet from the ground. Photo: Sarah Khan

    To test the cables for such magnets, the Technical Division’s Superconducting Strand and Cable R&D Group recently built a test stand able to deliver almost 15-Tesla fields, trouncing the capacity of similar facilities at a fraction of the size and cost. Such high fields means the group can now test magnet cables for the stringent standards of the LHC luminosity upgrades and other projects.

    ‘This facility has a lot of potential, and we’re looking forward to using it in future experiments,’ said Alexander Zlobin, head of the High-Field Magnet Program.

    A similar facility currently in use at CERN can deliver a 10-Tesla field, but requires high-current supplies to power the magnet and test cable as well as large, strong mechanical structures to keep from deforming the sample in the magnetic field, said Superconducting Strand and Cable R&D Group Leader Emanuela Barzi.

    That and other factors mean it can cost an experiment around $20,000 to prepare and test a single cable at that facility.

    Fermilab’s cable test stand, however, is built with a compact but powerful solenoid eight inches in diameter and 10 inches tall—small enough to fit on a bookshelf.

    “We realized that, with the space constraints we had, we needed to get creative with our design,” Barzi said.

    The test cable sits inside the solenoid’s center hole and connects to a transformer that delivers currents up to 25,000 amps from an input of just 600 amps. The group configured the cable in a way that results in much lower destructive forces than measured at other facilities, and thus less chance of structural damage to small, lightweight components.

    All this is done inside a small liquid-helium tank at very cold temperatures, allowing the cables to superconduct.

    The final cost is less than $2,500 per cable preparation and test, Barzi said. Some projects have already expressed interest in using the test stand, she added.

    See the original article here.

    Fermilab campus

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

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  • richardmitnick 1:18 pm on January 23, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    From Fermilab: “From the Technical Division – Blocking bubbles leads to a breakthrough” 

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

    Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013

    Lance Cooley, head of the Superconducting Materials Department, wrote this column.

    “Accelerators use magnets to steer and focus particle beams. At the Energy Frontier, very high magnetic fields are required and can be created only by energizing magnets with superconducting wires.

    A Fermilab quadrupole magnet being installed at CERN in June 2006. (Courtesy: Fermilab)

    Fermilab scientist Tengming Shen and colleagues at Brookhaven and Berkeley laboratories, Florida State University and Oxford Instruments – Superconducting Technology [OI-ST] have identified a new treatment for an emerging material called Bi-2212, which could lead to magnets twice as powerful as LHC magnets…. when it is cooled by the same liquid-helium refrigeration already used for accelerators, Bi-2212 can maintain superconductivity at huge magnetic fields, perhaps opening up new frontiers of energy…however, its ability to carry high electrical current has been less than adequate to sufficiently energize the magnets we envision.

    The crystallographic unit cell of BSCCO-2212 comprising two repeat units offset by (1/2,0,0). The other BSCCO family members have very similar structures: 2201 has one less CuO2 in its top and bottom half and no Ca layer, while 2223 has an extra CuO2 and Ca layer in each half. (Wikipedia)

    Recently, Shen and colleagues learned how to beef up the electrical capacity. They found that Bi-2212’s low current density is due to gas bubbles that form during a melting process that is an integral part of wire and magnet fabrication. OI-ST, the manufacturer of the wire, took measures to improve their handling techniques and reduce surface contamination…this ‘cleaner is better’ approach yielded a current density that was two times higher than before, but some bubbles seemed to remain.

    The understanding led to a technique that prevents bubble formation almost entirely. The team carried out the melting process under high external gas pressure, enough to balance the internal pressure of gas bubbles and prevent the wire from swelling. They observed five times higher current relative to a coil processed using the standard recipe.”

    See the full article here.

    Fermilab Campus

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

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