Tuesday, May 14, 2013
The 50-foot-wide electromagnet will travel 3,200 miles by boat and barge this summer to be part of a new experiment that will study particle physics.
A particle storage ring spanning 50 feet in diameter is making a 3,200-mile journey from New York to Illinois. The giant electromagnet is headed to Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, just outside Batavia, where it will be used in an experiment called Muon g-2, and will study the properties of muons, tiny subatomic particles that exist for only 2.2 millionths of a second. The ring, made of steel and aluminum, is part of a machine built at New York's Brookhaven National Laboratory in the 1990s. Although most of the machine can be disassembled and brought to Fermilab in trucks, the massive electromagnet must be transported in one piece, and cannot tilt or twist more than a few degrees without being irreparably damaged. The Muon g-2 team …
Saturday, May 11, 2013
Construction of the project would take place on the western portion of the laboratory site, close to Kirk and Giese roads in Batavia, and could begin as early as 2015.
It would be the world’s most ambitious neutrino experiment. And Fermilab wants everybody to know about it, especially its neighbors. Construction of the project would take place on the western portion of the laboratory site, close to Kirk and Giese roads in Batavia, and could begin as early as 2015. The Department of Energy and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory are inviting the local community to an informational meeting about the proposed Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment. The meeting, which will feature illustrative posters and short presentations, will take place from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, May 23, at Fermilab's Wilson Hall atrium in Batavia. The meeting will provide neighbors and the local community with an opportunity to…
Saturday, May 4, 2013
Part 3 of an Ongoing Series on Fermilab's Future: New dark matter detector begins search for invisible particles.
Saturday, May 4
Scientists this week heard their first pops in an experiment that searches for signs of dark matter in the form of tiny bubbles. Scientists will need further analysis to discern whether dark matter caused any of the COUPP-60 experiment’s first bubbles. “Our goal is to make the most sensitive detector to see signals of particles that we don’t understand,” said Hugh Lippincott, a postdoc with the Department of Energy’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory who has spent much of the past several months leading the installation of the one-of-a-kind detector in a laboratory a mile and a half underground. COUPP-60 is a dark-matter experiment funded by DOE’s Office of Science. Fermilab managed the assembly and installation of the experiment’s …
Thursday, May 2, 2013
Part 2 of a multipart series on Fermilab's Future: Its vision is "to inspire the world and enable its scientists to solve the mysteries of matter, energy, space and time for the benefit of all."
In Star Trek, the mission is to boldly go where no one has gone before. Fermilab's mission is a bit of the same. Director Pier Oddone—who is retiring on July 1—unveiled a new mission and vision statement for Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in his April 25 state of the lab speech. Why was it important to come up with a new vision and mission statement? "When we go to our neighbors, when we go to the scientific community, when we go to the DOE (Department of Energy), we would like to express ourselves in a way that is crisp, clear and compelling," Oddone said at the all-hands meeting. "There’s nothing wrong with our old mission statement, except that it is wordy ... You could read it almost in one breath if you had big enough lungs." …
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Part 1 of a Multipart Series on Fermilab's Future: Pier Oddone tells staff that he sees no problems for the remaining part of this fiscal year. Fermilab is asking for flat funding in FY 2014.
Pier Oddone says the state of Fermilab is good, furloughs or layoffs aren't going to happen due the federal government sequester and the budget for Fiscal Year 2014 is likely to be flat. The Fermilab director address the staff via streamed video on April 25. "First of all, we are adjusted to a sequestered budget," Oddone said in his opening remarks. "The House and Senate have to give their blessings, (but) I don't expect any issues in terms of furloughs or layoffs for the remaining part of this fiscal year." President Barack Obama put out his draft of the Fiscal Year 2014 budget, and Fermilab—and science in general—is well-represented, Oddone said. "This is the first step in the annual federal budget cycle and gives us a good idea of what …
Monday, April 1, 2013
No April Fools joke: Fermi National Accelerator's budget for Fiscal Year 2013 is down about 9 percent, Fermilab Director Pier Oddone says.
Fermilab's budget will be slashed by about 9 percent—a cut of about $36 million—but staff cuts aren't necessarily going to follow, according to a Fermilab announcement and multiple media reports. Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory Director Pier Oddone said the high-energy physics lab in Batavia will reallocate funds from other projects to make up for the 9 percent funding squeeze, the Kane County Chronicle reports. The Federal Office of High Energy Physics handed out the news last week that the preliminary budget estimate for Fermilab would be $368 million—down from about $404 million in Fiscal Year 2012. The Beacon-News reports that the $36 million reduction is made up of $29 million from the federal office and about $7 million from …
Sunday, March 17, 2013
President Barack Obama underscores the importance of investing in scientific research during a speech on American energy at Argonne National Laboratory on Friday.
President Bartack Obama was speaking at Argonne National Laboratory on Friday, and for the most part, he was speaking about Argonne National Laboratory, as well. But it doesn't take much reading between the lines to see that, as Argonne goes, so goes Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia. Obama visited Argonne, located just outside of Lemont, to promote his proposed Energy Security Trust, which would set aside $2 billion over 10 years to research alternatives for oil and gasoline. While pledging his commitment to scientific research, Obama also acknowledged the looming budget cuts facing federal facilities like Fermilab as a result of the sequester. "One of the reasons I was opposed to these cuts is because they don’t …
Saturday, March 16, 2013
Scientists announce Thursday that they're "a step closer" to validating the 48-year-old theory about one of the smallest particles and forces that make up the universe.
Saturday, March 16
If it looks like a Higgs boson and acts like a Higgs boson, it very well might be a Higgs boson. And that's big news in the physics field, and more great news for Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia. Scientists say a new particle discovered at experiments at the Large Hadron Collider last summer is looking more like a Higgs boson than ever before, according to results announced Thursday, March 14, at the Rencontres de Moriond conference in La Thuile, Italy In July, physicists on the CMS and ATLAS experiments announced the discovery of a particle with a close resemblance to a Higgs, a particle thought to give mass to other elementary particles. The discovery of such a particle could finish a job almost five decades in the …
Friday, March 15, 2013
Obama speaks about American energy policy Friday at Argonne National Laboratory. Here's what he has to say.
President Barack Obama will visit Argonne National Laboratory on Friday afternoon to discuss "American energy policy." The visit is especially interesting for friends and employees of Batavia's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory because the president's comments are likely to affect folks at Fermilab. Obama is scheduled to arrive at O'Hare International Airport around 11:25 a.m. on Air Force One. He will then travel to Argonne's Center for Nanoscale Materials, where he will address credentialed media at 1:30 p.m. The White House Press Office said the visit will focus on American energy, but did not elaborate on the context of the president's remarks. Obama's trip marks the first time a president has appeared at Argonne since former …
Friday, March 1, 2013
It's still sketchy how Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory will be affected by the sequester, but the short answer is that there likely will be an impact later this month.
Local officials are still scrambling to figure out when, if and how much the federal government sequester, which started March 1, will cost them. But one big employer in the area is pretty certain about the "when." Fermilab spokesperson Andre Salles said Friday that the short answer to whether Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory will be affected is "yes." "But we won't know what those effects will be until a federal budget is passed," Salles said. "The current continuing resolution expires on March 27, and we're waiting to see what actual cuts are made." Salles said he would provide updates if there is an official statement or if additional information comes in. President Barack Obama called the sequester cuts "dumb" and "arbitrary" …