Fermilab lecture reviews progress toward the tabletop accelerator and the potential benefits for society

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Surfing on Plasma Waves, Wednesday, June 3 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets $5.

Imagine taking a particle accelerator as large and powerful as Fermilab’s Tevatron and making it small enough to fit on your kitchen table. A new accelerator based on plasmas may someday make it possible.

Dr. Thomas Katsouleas, professor and dean at Duke University’s School of Engineering, will present “Surfing on Plasma Waves: Can We Hang Ten All the Way to the Energy Frontier?” on Wednesday, June 3 at 8:00 p.m. in Ramsey Auditorium at Fermilab.

Particle accelerators are the largest and most successful machines ever built. They have revealed the nature of matter and energy and act as time machines to explore the nature of the universe just after the big bang. Accelerators are also used for everything from processing 90 percent of the world’s tires to developing stronger artificial hip joints.

Yet the very cost and size of accelerators threatens their continued success. Katsouleas will review progress toward a new accelerator paradigm capable of dramatically reducing the size and cost of future particle accelerators.

Smaller, cheaper accelerators could benefit many fields. Tabletop accelerators could, for example, make it easier and cheaper for hospitals to provide new cancer therapies and medical diagnostics that use accelerator technology. Katsouleas will present the challenges and prospects for making a future plasma accelerator that could revolutionize accelerator-based science and technology.

Admission to the lecture is $5. For further information or reservations, call 630-840-ARTS weekdays between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Ramsey Auditorium is located in Wilson Hall at Fermilab. For more information, go to http://www.fnal.gov/culture.


* Fermilab is a Department of Energy Office of Science national laboratory operated under contract by the Fermi Research Alliance, LLC. The DOE Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the nation and helps ensure U.S. world leadership across a broad range of scientific disciplines.