Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Last LHC Superconducting Main Magnet Completes the Suite at CERN

29.11.2006
CERN took delivery of the last superconducting main magnet for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) on 27 November. This completes the full set of 1624 main magnets required to build the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator.

Constructing this gigantic scientific machine is a technological and logistical challenge for CERN and its industrial partners. The LHC accelerator was initially conceived 22 years ago and approved for build 10 years later. Its realisation involved more than 200 manufacturers around the world, producing vast quantities of complex components to tight precision.

The LHC is located inside a circular underground tunnel of 27km circumference approximately 100 metres beneath Switzerland and France. When fully operational, it will reach seven times more energy than the most powerful particle accelerator currently in use. Scientists will use the LHC to recreate the conditions just after the Big Bang, by colliding two beams of protons travelling in opposite directions at close to the speed of light.

Thousands of magnets of different varieties and sizes will be used to navigate the beams of particles around the accelerator. These include the superconducting main magnets, of which 1232 ‘dipole’ magnets of 15 metre lengths are used to guide the beams, and 392 ‘quadrupole’ magnets of 5 to 7 metre lengths are used to focus the beams.

“The present achievement is an essential milestone. The successful completion of all main magnets for the LHC accelerator results from the dedication and efficient collaboration of teams from CERN, other laboratories and many European industries. This is a promising step towards achieving the three pillars of the LHC – the accelerator, experiments, and computing – and the ultimate goal of scientific discoveries,” summarised CERN’s Director General Robert Aymar.

Turning a scientific plan on paper into reality is an immensely complex task. The design of the magnets presented one of the most important technological challenges for the LHC. A high magnetic field is required to bend the path of the particle beam around the accelerator. To achieve this, the magnets must perform at the most efficient ‘superconducting’ state without loss of energy, which requires chilling to a temperature of -271°C throughout the LHC’s operation – this is even colder than outer space!

CERN led the design and production processes of the dipole magnets, assembled by three European partners: Babcock Noell GmbH (Germany), Alstom MSA-Jeumont (a French consortium), and Ansaldo Superconduttori (Italy). “We introduced new techniques that were not yet standard in industry, including a new welding method for special stainless steel. We worked closely with industrial partners to adapt state of the art technologies for large-scale productions, while maintaining stringent standards and economic efficiency,” said Lucio Rossi, head of the Magnets, Cryostats and Superconductors group at CERN. Lyn Evans, LHC project leader, added, “This is the end of more than six years of industrial production under very tight quality control. It has required a very close collaboration between the magnet manufacturers and CERN.” The quadrupole main magnets were designed by CEA-DAPNIA laboratory (France), within the framework of the French special contribution to the LHC, and assembled by ACCEL Instruments (Germany) with similar challenges.

CERN’s industrial partners have also benefited from the project to build the LHC. The processes of research and development, coupled with the knowledge transfer from expertise only found in a world-class particle physics laboratory, have resulted in innovations they can reapply to other products in industry, from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines to car manufacturing.

Assembly processes to complete the LHC are expected to finish by mid-2007, in preparation for the start-up in November 2007. The LHC will be central to the next generation of experiments at CERN, enabling scientific investigations that have never been possible before. A new frontier of knowledge will shed light on the unresolved questions of science, such as the search for the elusive Higgs boson to explain the origin of particle mass, investigating the make up of dark matter, and the existence of extra dimensions of space.

James Gillies | alfa
Further information:
http://www.cern.ch
http://press.web.cern.ch/press/PressReleases/Releases2006/PR18.06E.html

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Study offers new theoretical approach to describing non-equilibrium phase transitions
27.04.2017 | DOE/Argonne National Laboratory

nachricht SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history
26.04.2017 | Southwest Research Institute

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Bare bones: Making bones transparent

27.04.2017 | Life Sciences

Study offers new theoretical approach to describing non-equilibrium phase transitions

27.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

From volcano's slope, NASA instrument looks sky high and to the future

27.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>