Laboratory releases physics advisory committee report

Fermilab released the latest report from the committee that advises laboratory leaders on the direction of the laboratory’s future experiments and programs.

At its summer meeting in Snowmass, Colo., the Fermilab Physics Advisory Committee (PAC), focused on the Intensity Frontier and Fermilab’s current and future neutrino program, including the LBNE/DUSEL situation. The committee also considered a letter of intent from the MINERvA Collaboration, as well as a proposal to extend MINOS running in the NOvA era.

The committee recommended Stage I approval for the continued running of MINOS, MINOS+ (E-1016), and the Holometer experiment (E-990). For MINOS+, the committee noted the known performance of MINOS, the modest costs involved and the interest in accessible physics, in particular for sterile neutrino searches. For the Holometer experiment, the committee noted that the experiment aims to have the world’s best limits on megahertz gravitational waves and, within two years, the first holographic noise results. The MINERvA letter of intent focused on obtaining the engineering resources to run the existing helium target, but with hydrogen or deuterium. The PAC encouraged this, with particular interest in using deuterium, and possibly argon, to obtain data.

Throughout the laboratory’s history, the PAC has analyzed proposals for experiments and potential programs and helped the laboratory to define its strategic plan. PAC is comprised of senior scientists from universities and high-energy physics laboratories in the U.S. and abroad.

The charge to the PAC and the committee’s comments and recommendations are now available from links on the PAC website.

The PAC’s next meeting is scheduled for Dec. 8-10 at Fermilab.