2013-2015: Moving Forward

New experiments at the Frontiers

In 2013, Fermilab will resume operations of its upgraded accelerator complex, which will feature more powerful particle beams that will support a range of new and existing experiments at the Intensity Frontier. The laboratory will break ground for a Muon Campus in the spring of 2013. Scientists are advancing plans for two experiments that have been proposed for the Muon Campus: Muon g-2 and Mu2e. In addition, the laboratory will advance plans for new large-scale projects: the Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment and Project X. At the Cosmic Frontier, the search will continue for dark-matter particles and the origins of dark energy.

Fermilab will also pursue R&D for future particle accelerators and detectors to advance technology, enable future experiments and create innovations for the benefit of society. The laboratory will celebrate the completion and dedication of the Illinois Accelerator Research Center.

Powerful beams for the Intensity Frontier

Certain particle physics experiments require particle beams with incredibly large numbers of particles: the Intensity Frontier. Beginning in 2013, Fermilab's upgraded accelerator complex will create more intense particle beams for experiments such as MINOS, NOvA and MicroBooNE that will explore neutrino interactions and rare subatomic processes. The planned muon experiments, Muon g-2 and Mu2e, will benefit from the more intense proton beams provided by Fermilab's accelerator complex in the future as well.

Scientists will record the first neutrino data with the 14,000-ton NOvA detector, under construction in northern Minnesota, in 2013. Simultaneously, physicists will advance the assembly of the MicroBooNE neutrino detector. It will use liquid-argon technology to study neutrinos at lower energy than NOvA. Scientists expect construction of the MicroBooNE detector to be complete in 2014 and to have first data in 2015.

Advances at the Energy Frontier

Fermilab will remain a strong partner for U.S. collaborators on the Large Hadron Collider experiments at CERN. Fermilab's Remote Operations Center and Grid Computing Center provide access to the LHC's collision data for U.S. scientists. U.S. institutions including Fermilab help upgrade the LHC accelerator and experiments during the two-year LHC shutdown that started in early 2013. Scientists on Fermilab's CDF and DZero experiments will continue to analyze  Tevatron data for a few more years, searching for signs of matter-antimatter asymmetries and other rare phenomena.

Exploring the Cosmic Frontier

Using the cosmos as a laboratory, Fermilab scientists will continue to investigate dark matter and dark energy with underground experiments and ground-based telescopes. The 570-megapixel Dark Energy Camera, mounted on a telescope in Chile, is operational and will scan about 10 percent of the southern sky to seek for the origins of dark energy by photographing galaxies when they were only a few billion years old. The Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina will continue to search for the origin of the highest-energy cosmic rays.

Operating new particle detectors deep underground, Fermilab scientists will have some of the world's most sensisitive search tools for dark matter particles. The experiments include the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search experiment and the Chicagoland Observatory for Underground Particle Physics. The COUPP collaboration started operating a 60-kg bubble chamber at Canada's SNOLAB to look for dark-matter particles in the spring of 2013.

Creating next-generation accelerator technology

Future Fermilab accelerator R&D will focus on superconducting radio-frequency technology and on collaborating with research partners from around the world. In 2013, Fermilab will complete the construction of the Illinois Accelerator Research Center, a state-of-the-art facility where scientists and engineers from Fermilab, Argonne and Illinois universities will work side by side with industrial partners to research and develop breakthroughs in accelerator science and translate them into applications for the nation's health, wealth and security. In 2013, the laboratory will also improve the capabilities of its SRF accelerator test facility, the first of its kind in the United States. In collaboration with industry and other DOE national laboratories, scientists will unvestiage the potential of SRF components to accelerate particle beams. In 2013, Fermilab completed the reference design for the proposed Project X, an accelerator complex that could be build in stages. It would use SRF technology to provide beam to kaon, muon, neutrino and atomic nuclei experiments at the Intensity Frontier.

Last modified: 03/27/2013  |