Fermi National Laboratory

Volume 24  |  Friday, October 19, 2001  |  Number 17
In This Issue  |  FermiNews Main Page

RunII Well Under Control

by Kurt Riesselmann

Salah Chaurize an Operator working in the Main Control Room On March 1, Collider Run II began at Fermilab. It is a six-year enterprise to produce a record number of proton-antiproton collisions using the world's most powerful particle accelerator, the Tevatron.

"This machine doesn't have an on/off switch," said Mike Martens, who just assumed the 24-hour-7-days-a-week responsibility as Run II coordinator. "Every time we start a run, we have to tune the machines, slowly increasing the luminosity."

Luminosity is expert's lingo for the number of collisions produced per second. So far, Fermilab accelerator experts have achieved a peak rate of about 450,000 collisions per second (a luminosity of 7.5x1030 cm-2sec-1), a respectable start for Run II. By January, they want to increase the luminosity to 4x1031 ("four times ten to the thirty-one"), improving the previous record obtained during Run I, which ended in 1996, by about a factor of two.

At present, scientists are using a six-week shutdown to improve accelerator operations and to put the final touches on the CDF and DZero detectors, large instruments that take "snapshots" of the collisions, revealing the nature of the tiniest building blocks of matter. In the past seven months, both CDF and DZero collaborations have tested their equipment, collected the first collision data and refined their computer controls. The planned shutdown, which began on October 8, gives them a chance to repair equipment and supplement existing electronics before the recording of "real" data will start around Thanksgiving.

The Dzero Control Room

From the Dzero Control Room, Scientists monitor various detector subsystems such as cooling equipment and data aquisition systems.

The Main Control Room

In the Main Control Room, operators have access to 90,000 readouts and can contrl more than 40,000 devices related to the accelerators.

On the Web:
Beam Division http://www-bd.fnal.gov/
DZero Collaboration http://www-d0.fnal.gov
CDF Collaboration http://www-cdf.fnal.gov

last modified 10/22/2001 by C. Hebert   email Fermilab