Dialing it in for Earth

Categories: Uncategorized
Published on: August 21, 2019
The Remote Operations Center – West enables scientists to monitor neutrino experiments from off site, which helps cut down on airplane travel — and carbon dioxide emissions. Photo: Reidar Hahn

Fermilab has an impact on science in many ways. In addition to the laboratory’s lead role in high-energy physics, we contribute to astrophysics, computing, accelerator science and technology, and many other scientific initiatives.

We also contribute to global warming. To run a complex as large as Fermilab requires significant energy resources. Our laboratory recognizes this is a challenge, and many of us have made a significant effort to reduce our carbon footprint whenever and wherever possible. 

By Bill Pellico. You can read the article at the Fermilab news site.

Quarks, squarks, stops and charm at this year’s Moriond conference

Categories: CMS/LHC, Energy Frontier
Published on: August 14, 2019
Fermilab research associates (RAs) Kevin Pedro and Nadja Strobbe presented a variety of CMS and ATLAS research results at the 53rd annual Recontres de Moriond conference.

This March, scientists from around the world gathered in LaThuile, Italy, for the 53rd annual Recontres de Moriond conference, one of the longest running and most prestigious conferences in particle physics. This conference is broken into two distinct weeks, with the first week usually covering electroweak physics and the second covering processes involving quantum chromodynamics. Fermilab and the LHC Physics Center were well represented at the conference.
By Don Lincoln. You can read the entire article at the Fermilab News web site.

In the round: a new design for high-temperature superconducting magnets

Published on: August 7, 2019
Compared to other configurations, this novel design is more suitable for high-temperature superconductors, which are capable of operating up to a temperature of 77 Kelvin (a temperature that liquid nitrogen can maintain).

Two new simple, elegant magnets for particle accelerators could lead to significant cost savings. Researchers have found a way to create high-temperature superconducting magnets that could substantially simplify magnet fabrication and cooling.

UPDATE: The original audio file had none of the music, and sounded rather sad because of that, IMHO.

By Vladimir Kashikhin. You can read this article at Fermilab’s News web site.

Our 500th episode: A review of the achievements at Fermilab

Tags: No Tags
Published on: July 24, 2019
Item number 5 of this podcast: “CDF and ZDero discover the top quark”. This photo was taken on March 2, 1995 of the crowd in Fermilab’s Ramsey Auditorium who came to hear the announcement of the discovery of the Top Quark. Your podcaster is the 12th person from the right on the 16th row from the front.

Today’s special, commemorative episode is a look back at some of the results achieved by scientists and engineers at Fermilab over 50-plus years of operation.  It is based on a photo essay that appeared in Fermilab News in 2017, our 50th year, entitled “Fifty years of discoveries and innovations.” I have selected 15 of the 50 for this extended, 14 minute podcast episode.

The original text was written by Troy Rummler. Most of the photographs were taken, over the years, by Fermilab’s outstanding photographer, Reidar Hahn. You can find the full article and all 50 photographs at http://tinyurl.com/fnal50.

How do I explain quantum computing?

Categories: Physics in a Nutshell
Published on: July 17, 2019
What in the heck is this image? The title of the image is “Sym Learning Speak Quantum”, for what that’s worth.

Dr. Lyon gives a lay-person’s introduction to the concepts of quantum computing.

By Adam Lyon. Click here for the article at Fermilab’s web site.

Gravity waves from black holes

Image: Genze/NASA

More than a thousand million years before dinosaurs roamed Earth, a ripple in space was spreading through the universe. Traveling at 300,000 kilometers per second, the speed of light, it had covered 95 percent of its journey to Earth when the dinosaurs became extinct.

By Mike Albrow. You can read this Physics in a Nutshell article here.

Search for sterile neutrinos in MINOS and MINOS+

Categories: Intensity Frontier
Published on: July 3, 2019
MINOS far detector as seen in 2012. Photo: Reidar Hahn

The MINOS+ collaboration at the Department of Energy’s Fermilab has published a paper in Physical Review Letters about their latest results: new constraints on the existence of sterile neutrinos. The collaboration has exploited new high-statistics data and a new analysis regime to set more stringent boundaries on the possibility of sterile neutrinos mixing with muon neutrinos. They have significantly improved on their previous results published in 2016. With close to 40 publications that have garnered more than 6,000 citations, MINOS has been at the forefront of studying neutrino oscillations physics since its first data-taking days in 2005.

This article was written by the MINOS+ Collaboration. You can read the article here.

Professor Higgs’ Particle

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Published on: June 26, 2019
François Englert (left) and Peter Higgs speak to conference attendees at CERN on July 4, 2012, on the occasion of the announcement of the discovery of a Higgs boson by the ATLAS and CMS experiments. Photo: Maximilien Brice/CERN

Fifty years ago physicists, pondering how particles get mass, had suggested that there is another field, but one with no direction and the same value everywhere throughout the universe. 

Dr. Higgs said, “If that field exists, there should be a particle that goes with it,” just as the electromagnetic field, light, has a particle, the photon. The Higgs particle is heavier than a silver atom but trillions of times smaller. Perhaps it has no size at all! It disintegrates to lighter particles immediately and has no practical applications, so what’s the big deal?

By Mike Albrow. Click here for the Fermilab article.

CSI: Neutrinos cast no shadows

Categories: Intensity Frontier
Tags: ,
Published on: June 19, 2019
Xianguo Lu from University of Oxford explains why neutrinos leave no shadows at the March 2, 2018 Fermilab Wine & Cheese Seminar. Photo: Kevin McFarland

Scientists solve neutrino mysteries by watching them interact with detectors — specifically, with the atomic nuclei in the detector material. Most of the time, a neutrino does not even shake hands with a nucleus. But when it does, the lightweight, neutral particle can transform into a charged particle and knock things out of the nucleus as it escapes — leaving a crime scene behind. It is the job of scientists at Fermilab’s MINERvA experiment to reconstruct the crime scene and figure out what has happened during the interaction.

This article appeared on the Fermilab News site on February 4, 2019. It was written by Xianguo Lu.

Neutrinos: The ghost particle; Neutrinos from the sun

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Published on: June 12, 2019
The answer to the solar neutrino problem lies in the fact that there are multiple neutrino flavors.

An introduction to the “Solar Neutrino Problem”, that is, why did scientists originally think that there was something really fishy going on with Wolfgang Pauli’s “little neutral one.”

This post is a mash-up of two “Physics in a Nutshell” articles: Neutrinos: The ghost particle, published on June 2, 2017; Neutrinos from the sun, published June 16, 2017. Both were written by Mike Albrow and were adapted from articles he wrote for Positively Naperville.

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