Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Particle Beams Clash For First Time At New Collider

Date:
July 31, 1998
Source:
Stanford University
Summary:
A sophisticated new "particle smasher" at Stanford University built to explore the difference between matter and antimatter sprang to life this week with the successful achievement of its first collisions.

By David F. Salisbury

A sophisticated new "particle smasher" at Stanford University built to explore the difference between matter and antimatter sprang to life this week with the successful achievement of its first collisions.

Physicists at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) circulated beams of electrons and and their antimatter opposites, known as positrons, simultaneously in two evacuated rings, each more than a mile around. When they brought the narrow beams together at a single crossing point, they observed the deflection and disruption of one beam by the other a sure sign that head-on collisions had occurred.

Funded by $177 million from the U.S. Department of Energy, the Asymmetric B Factory is a joint construction project of SLAC, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). The dual-ring machine is an extensive upgrade of an existing electron-positron collider at SLAC. Construction began in 1994 and was completed in early July, on budget and on schedule.

"I am very pleased that we have achieved collisions so soon after finishing construction," said SLAC physicist Jonathan Dorfan, the project leader. "We look forward with great anticipation to completing the commissioning process and beginning the physics program next year."

The collider is now in the midst of a long tuning process, called commissioning, that will continue into the spring of 1999, when the machine will begin operations for physics research. In January a 1,000-ton particle detector known as BaBar will be moved into position at the point where the two beams intersect.

Built by a large international collaboration of more than 500 physicists and engineers, the massive detector is designed to search through the debris of electron-positron collisions for evidence of short-lived subatomic particles known as B mesons. By comparing the production and disintegration of these particles with those of their antiparticles, physicists hope to learn more about the differences between matter and antimatter that led to the universe being composed almost entirely of matter.

Under Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz congratulated the three laboratories involved and especially the B Factory team, saying, "This is a truly impressive accomplishment so early in the commissioning process. The B Factory will help us examine one of Nature's great secrets why the universe has such a preponderance of matter over antimatter."

The Asymmetric B Factory is the world's first particle collider in which the electrons and positrons meet at unequal energies: electrons have almost three times the energy of positrons. Because of this difference, plus the need to circulate high currents in order to produce millions of B mesons, physicists have designed a machine in which the two different kinds of particles travel in two separate rings.

A complex array of magnets before and after the crossover point brings the beams together and then separates them after they clash. These magnets also focus the beams down to small dimensions in order to enhance the chances of obtaining electron-positron collisions.

Commissioning of the B Factory has gone smoothly, with few surprises, which SLAC Director Burton Richter called "a testament to the expertise of the accelerator physicists from the three laboratories who designed and built this machine."

The B Factory will resume operations in October with attempts to boost the collision rate.

Related Information: Asymmetric B Factory web page (http://www.slac.stanford.edu/accel/pepii/home.html)


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Stanford University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Stanford University. "Particle Beams Clash For First Time At New Collider." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 July 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/07/980731083149.htm>.
Stanford University. (1998, July 31). Particle Beams Clash For First Time At New Collider. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/07/980731083149.htm
Stanford University. "Particle Beams Clash For First Time At New Collider." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/07/980731083149.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Space Race Pits Bezos Vs Musk

Space Race Pits Bezos Vs Musk

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 16, 2014) Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' startup will team up with Boeing and Lockheed to develop rocket engines as Elon Musk races to have his rockets certified. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
MIT's Robot Cheetah Unleashed — Can Now Run, Jump Freely

MIT's Robot Cheetah Unleashed — Can Now Run, Jump Freely

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) MIT developed a robot modeled after a cheetah. It can run up to speeds of 10 mph, though researchers estimate it will eventually reach 30 mph. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Manufacturer Prints 3-D Car In Record Time

Manufacturer Prints 3-D Car In Record Time

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) Automobile manufacturer Local Motors created a drivable electric car using a 3-D printer. Printing the body only took 44 hours. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Refurbished New York Subway Tunnel Unveiled After Sandy Damage

Refurbished New York Subway Tunnel Unveiled After Sandy Damage

Reuters - US Online Video (Sep. 15, 2014) New York officials unveil subway tunnels that were refurbished after Superstorm Sandy. Nathan Frandino reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

      Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins