Press Room


MINOS photos for downloading

When publishing any of the photos on this page please credit them to Fermilab. Click on thumbnail photos for medium resolution images. Download tif images by right clicking on high resolution tif image links.

Sideview The 100-foot-long MINOS detector consists of 486 massive octagonal planes, lined up like the slices of a loaf of bread. Each plane consists of a sheet of steel about 25 feet high and one inch thick, covered on one side with a layer of scintillating plastic. The planes are numbered 0 through 485, with the last one visible in the photo. The whole detector weighs 6,000 tons.
High Resolution Tif Image
Front view The MINOS detector is located in a cavern half a mile underground in the Soudan Underground Laboratory, Minnesota. The groundbreaking for the cavern was on July 20, 1999. The excavation of the cavern took about two years, followed by the construction of the detector.
High Resolution Tif Image
Far view Technicians assembled each detector plane on a strongback (foreground). The whole plane was then lifted by crane and transported to its final position. It took less than two days to assemble and erect a single plane.
High Resolution Tif Image
Construction A number of university and laboratory groups in the US, UK, and Greece worked at their home institutions on the production of detector components. The groups built and tested the pieces of the plastic scintillator system and then shipped them to the Soudan mine for installation. The steel plates were produced in the US. Because all material had to enter the cavern through an old narrow shaft, the detector arrived in pieces not more than seven feet in width. The assembly took place underground (see photo).
High Resolution Image
Map In early 2005, when the construction of a neutrino beamline at Fermilab is complete, MINOS scientists will use the far detector to "catch" neutrinos created at Fermilab's Main Injector accelerator in Batavia, Illinois. The neutrinos will travel 450 miles straight through the earth from Fermilab to Soudan - no tunnel needed. A near detector at Fermilab, which will be assembled in 2004, will record the composition of the neutrino beam as it leaves the Fermilab site. The far detector in Soudan will again analyze the neutrino beam. It will allow scientists to directly study the oscillation of muon neutrinos into electron neutrinos or tau neutrinos under laboratory conditions.
High Resolution Image
MINOS collaboration More than 200 scientists from Brazil, France, Greece, Russia, United Kingdom and the United States are involved in the project. Some of them are shown here in front of a prototype detector plane built at Fermilab. There is also a photo of collaboration members at a workshop in Minnesota in June 2000 taken by Jerry Meier, University of Minnesota.
High Resolution Image
Shadow A technician casting a larger-than-life shadow on the MINOS detector. Tour groups can see the detector from the walkway to the left, just across a mural painted on the undulating surface created by the excavation.
High Resolution Image
High Resolution Tif Image
Mural The University of Minnesota Foundation commissioned a mural for the MINOS cavern, painted onto the rock wall, 59 feet wide by 25 feet high. The mural's fiery central focus area contains images of scientists such as Enrico Fermi and Wolfgang Pauli, Wilson Hall at Fermilab, George Shultz, a key figure in the history of Minnesota mining, and a number of surprises. "I've included the word 'change' in as many languages as people could give me translations for it," said Joe Giannetti of Minneapolis, the artist who was featured in a National Geographic television documentary about the MINOS project. "Neutrinos are changing all the time-just as we are, just as the universe is. I'm fascinated by neutrino science, and I admire the imaginations of the scientists. A scientist had to imagine this experiment, this series of detectors. This place is a temple of the human imagination."
High Resolution Image
Soudan elevator The Soudan Underground Mine was closed in 1963 and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1966. It is operated as a State Park by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, with 14 tours a day taking the historic elevator for a fast and clamorous ride nearly a half-mile below the surface. After descending, hard hat-wearing tourists can view old mine caverns with some of the equipment still standing in place. Since May 2002, tourists can also view the cavern housing the MINOS detector.
High Resolution Image
Soudan aerial Soudan is part of Minnesota's Iron Range. Rich ore deposits were discovered in the area in 1865. Today, underground mines have largely given way to surface mining. The Soudan Underground Mine has served as a physics laboratory since 1979. The photo shows the view from the top of the tower above the Soudan Mine shaft.
High Resolution Image
Return to MINOS Press Release



last modified 8/14/2003   email Fermilab