Top five from the chief technology officer and Applied Physics and Superconducting Technology Division

Sergey Belomestnykh

On Nov. 4, the Applied Physics and Superconducting Technology Division held an all-hands meeting. The Division heard updates from Giorgio Apollinari, George Velev, Alex Romanenko, Jay Theilacker, and me. Here are the top five takeaways from the meeting:

  1. Safety comes first. I’m glad to report that we didn’t have any reportable injuries for FY19. Thank you to everyone for working safely, and we hope this trend continues. Remember to plan work and look out for precursors that could hint at an upcoming issue. Work planning and control are crucial components in work safety. Removing excess clutter from offices and work areas are also important actions that can make our staff safer and make our facilities mission-ready.
  2. Our staff and facilities are essential to a successful HiLumi LHC upgrade. The goal of the HiLumi project is to increase luminosity at the LHC by a factor of 10. APS-TD to the rescue! We’ll need to squeeze the beams using higher field magnets and to ensure that the bunches overlap using superconducting crab cavities. The basic technologies of our division support these upgrades of the LHC. We are producing 20 magnets packaged in 10 cryoassemblies, and 10 cavities. Producing the materials and final products requires expertise from people across the country and around the world.
  3. The magnets sector is setting records and powering activities on the lab’s priority projects. A high-field demonstrator magnet reached a world-record dipole field of 14.1 Tesla and is being prepared for the next test with a goal to achieve its design field of 15 Tesla. This will pave the way for future 16 T dipoles. An important part of the sector’s activities is to support the Fermilab’s accelerator complex. Here we are modifying Booster kicker magnets, refurbishing Main Injector quadrupoles, rebuilding a dipole for the muon source, and rebuilding magnets for the Recycler. For PIP-II, we’re working on the beam transfer line, Booster injection, Booster extraction, and Main Injector. The Mu2e project must close out successfully and we play an important role here. Assembly of the Mu2e transport solenoids and cryogenic testing their modules at the Heavy Assembly Building is progressing well. Finally, we are building a new high-field vertical magnet test facility in IB1 to test conductors, cables, and high-field magnets.
  4. We are the world leader in basic SRF R&D. We’re building the next generation of SRF accelerators for PIP-II, LCLS-II, and LCLS-II HE. This is possible because the SRF sector continues to push the performance envelope of SRF cavities. The highlights include record Q factors at higher gradients and new mid-temperature heat treatments for niobium cavities, record gradients for niobium-tin cavities. The physics behind the scenes is being studied at the Materials Science Lab. We’re also building up our quantum technology skills and employing SRF cavities as new physics detectors (looking for dark photons).
  5. Our cryogenics sector is really cool – and involved in high-profile projects. There’s lots of work going on around the lab, including extending cryogens to cryomodules at PIP-II, testing for Mu2e, upgrades at MDB, new pumps at CMTF, and maintenance and a new liquefier at IB-1. Keep an eye out: workers will move four gas storage tanks from the Tevatron to the parking lot next to IB2. Our sub-Kelvin experts are busy with designing and building cryogenics for new generation of experiments such as SuperCDMS and CMB-S4.

Sergey Belomestnykh is the chief technology officer at Fermilab.