Barbara Warmbein | 11 June 2009The team developing the ILC's positron source have every reason to be positive. Recent tests have shown both that the four-meter helical undulator prototype – a device that will produce an intense beam of polarised gamma rays – works in its cryomodule, and that the target that will produce the positrons themselves can reach its design rotation speed of 2000 revolutions per minute.
Category: Feature | Tagged: accelerator R&D, positron source, undulator
Barbara Warmbein | 4 June 2009A few weeks after the first big Accelerator Advisory Panel (AAP) review at the TILC09 meeting in Tsukuba, Japan, the panel has published its review results (see also the two most recent Director’s Corners on this topic). After two months of preparation, an intense week of presentations and another few weeks of writing up the results, the 13 members – ten ILC researchers and three from outside the linear collider world – presented a set of recommendations that intend to lead the ILC's most important areas of research and development to successful completion by the end of the Technical Design Phase (TDP) in late 2012.
Category: Feature | Tagged: AAP, AAP review, Accelerator Advisory Panel
Barbara Warmbein | 14 May 2009Some 400 pages of calculations, simulations, detector descriptions, estimates, some 1000 signatories from all round the world, hours spent on the phone or clustered around conference tables – a lot of hard work and careful thinking went into the Letters of Intent (LOI). Each of the three submitted letters – for ILD, for SiD and for the 4th concept or 4th for short – managed to meet the deadline, and even though they didn’t manage to stick to the recommended page limit of 100, they were all accepted and are being scrutinised by the international detector advisory group IDAG (see this week’s other feature). This is a story about how an LOI is written, as told by the authors and editors.
Category: Feature | Tagged: IDAG, letter of intent, LOI
Barbara Warmbein | 7 May 2009Antimatter is likely to matter quite a lot in the next weeks. Hollywood has made its movie version of Dan Brown’s thriller Angels and Demons, directed by Ron Howard and starring Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon, and the film will hit cinemas around the world starting on 13 May. If you know the book you’ll know what ILC NewsLine has to do with it: it’s all about antimatter!
Category: Feature | Tagged: antimatter
Barbara Warmbein | 23 April 2009In order to have a detailed and visual model of the ILC tunnels, shafts, accelerator components, beam pipes and support lines, a team from around the world has just shown that they can produce three-dimensional ILC models. These will be crucial for efficient future planning and integration and will now be extended to other areas than the one of the sample exercise.
Category: Feature | Tagged: 3D model, CAD, CFS, EDMS
Barbara Warmbein | 9 April 2009New science project in their planning stages are a bit of a hothouse for new ideas, innovative solutions and maybe even breakthroughs in technology. The ILC is right in the middle of this stage: R&D is in full swing, scientists pursue various solutions to meeting the high demands of the machine and detectors. No wonder then that people are already thinking of ways to transfer the technologies developed for the different areas of the ILC to other projects or disciplines: medicine, biology, drug research, computing, environment and many others.
Category: Feature | Tagged: technology benefits, technology transfer
Barbara Warmbein | 12 March 2009The ILC is not the only accelerator that has to struggle against electron clouds and their distracting effect on the particle beam. Even the Large Hadron Collider LHC at CERN may suffer from it, and tests on two of its pre-accelerators, the PS and the SPS, have already proven several techniques with which the electron-cloud build-up can be avoided or at least be brought under better control. One of those techniques is ‘scrubbing’, and it does what it says on the packet: it scrubs the beam pipe clean from the inside. It does not do this with bucket, cloth and detergent, however. Instead, a beam at the highest possible intensity, the limit of what the machines can take, is pumped through, literally getting hoovered by the vacuum pumps.
Category: Feature | Tagged: CERN, electron cloud, LHC, scrubbing
Barbara Warmbein | 12 March 2009Susanna Guiducci has her head in the clouds – electron clouds, that is. (Sometimes she sits in clouds that gather around the Frascati hills south of Rome where she is based at the INFN Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati or LNF, but that is not really relevant to this story – just very picturesque.) As new leader of the damping ring group, one of the key R&D projects in the ILC’s Technical Design Phase, she also has her feet firmly planted in electron-positron accelerator physics and has been working on damping rings for ten years. All that experience gives her a clear picture of where the challenges lie in the ILC damping ring design, but she is confident: “I am convinced that the parameters set for the damping rings are feasible.”
Category: Profile | Tagged: damping ring, electron cloud, Frascati, INFN, Italy, LNF, profile
Barbara Warmbein | 5 March 2009When talking about what they know and what they want to find out, physicists like to speak about ‘landscapes’. There are the well-chartered lands of the Standard Model and undiscovered territories like the Terascale – a region that the Large Hadron Collider LHC at CERN will enter when protons start colliding in autumn. With the LHC and its eventful proton-proton collisions scientists expect a whole range of signatures of expected and new physics, and they will need a machine to follow up on these to get a clearer view. In February, a group of more than one hundred theorists and experimentalists met at CERN for three weeks. Their goal was to outline the landscapes they may find with data from the LHC and to develop strategies for how to pick the right tools for the coming expedition.
Category: Feature | Tagged: CERN, future accelerators, future colliders
Barbara Warmbein | 12 February 2009The small town of Schenefeld just outside Hamburg in northern Germany isn't exactly known for its sights or its tourism. Many Schenefeld citizens, however, have recently become tourists in their own neighbourhood: ever since the construction works for the European XFEL started on 8 January, the building site sees a steady flow of visitors stopping by on or from their way to the shops, checking on progress, curious about their new neighbour. While the whole ILC project can learn a lot from this curiosity (namely establishing good contact with neighbours when construction for the collider starts), one specific group is digging deeper: the 'conventional facilities and siting (CF&S)' team is establishing close contacts to experts working on the European XFEL to learn from them and to help when possible.
Category: Feature | Tagged: CFS, conventional facilities, conventional facilities and siting, XFEL