LBNE reconfiguration workshop sought ideas from community
Fermilab employees, users and community members filled One West during the two-day LBNE reconfiguration workshop on April 25 and 26. Photo: Cindy Arnold

Scientists and community members packed One West on April 25 and 26 for the Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment reconfiguration workshop. After a charge from DOE’s Office of Science Director Bill Brinkman, Fermilab Director Pier Oddone formed a steering committee to guide the physics and engineering working groups to determine an efficient phased approach for DOE. Workshop participants helped assess the best options to do the most science for the least amount of money.

“I see a lot of friends and leaders from the community here today,” Oddone addressed the crowd in his opening remarks. “We have a fast time scale to put this report together. We don’t want to lose momentum here. Let’s get to work.”

Fermilab Deputy Director Young-Kee Kim presented an overview of the possible options the two working groups had proposed so far.

“We’re in very good shape for the next 10 years, for neutrino and muon programs,” Kim said in reference to the upcoming NOvA, MicroBooNE, Muon g-2, Mu2e experiments and accelerator improvement activities. “The LBNE is a flagship experiment for the following decade that we are developing.”

With 335 members from 61 institutions in 25 states and five countries, Kim called the LBNE collaboration rich with knowledge and experience. The workshop purposely overlapped with the LBNE collaboration meeting so members could attend to hear from those not involved with the planning. Open microphone sessions allowed everyone an opportunity to present their ideas.

“We want to explore every viable option, and we’re seeking input,” Kim said. “We will write those options down and make them available to the physics community.”

An open discussion at the conclusion of the presentations revealed that while there might be more opinions and ideas concerning the LBNE reconfiguration, there is a need for a better understanding of the cost estimates.

The steering committee will use contributions from the community to put together a preliminary report on moving forward with LBNE by June 1. The final report is due to DOE by July 1. Potential phase-2 options in terms of the overall U.S. strategy and leadership role will be studied and incorporated in this report.

“It was great to hear from so many people excited about physics,” Kim said. “We have a lot to think about.”

Slides from every workshop presentation, as well as minutes from the steering committee and working group meetings are available on the LBNE reconfiguration website.

—Ashley WennersHerron