Director of Fermilab visits Daresbury Laboratory

On Thursday 2nd of May, Cockcroft and ASTeC welcomed Dr Lia Merminga, the director of Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FNAL), to STFC Daresbury. Dr Merminga was visiting Manchester University to give the annual Bragg Lecture in the physics department. Her Bragg Lecture, “A vision for high energy physics in the next 50 years: a view from Fermilab” was very well attended, by academics and students alike.

Dr Lia Merminga surrounded by Daresbury Laboratory / Cockcroft Institute staff at SuRF lab. Credit: STFC.

FNAL has deep and important links with physicists and engineers at Daresbury. ASTeC are constructing three cyromodules for the PIP-II accelerator at FNAL, based on superconducting radio frequency technology at the SuRF lab. PIP-II accelerates protons to energies required to produce a high intensity neutrino beam needed to understand neutrino oscillations. The neutrinos will travel 1,300 kilometres to four Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) detector caverns, approximately one mile below the surface, one of which will contain 17,000 tonnes of liquid argon and 150 particle detectors known as anode plane assemblies (APAs). STFC’s Technology at Daresbury (T@DL) and a consortium of UK universities are constructing 137 of the 6.3m wide by 2.3m high APAs. Dr Merminga was a previous member of the Cockcroft Scientific Advisory Committee and followed and advised the CI development of CLARA and its Full Energy Beam Exploitation (FEBE) beamline.

Dr Merminga and academics from Imperial College, Manchester University and Lancaster University toured the fabrication facilities for DUNE APAs and PIP-II. Dr Merminga took the opportunity to meet the technical teams in STFC T@DL and ASTeC and saw first-hand the progress and developments at the laboratory. Dr Merminga was also shown the CLARA/FEBE facility which is approaching its first beam commissioning. Stewart Boogert director of the Cockcroft said “it was such a pleasure to have Lia visit us, giving us a chance to show the progress in cryomodule production and CLARA/FEBE”.