Italy

Cryomodules of five different types, one of which is the SSR1 pictured here, boost the energy of the beam. cryomodule, beam, PIP-II, superconducting technology, accelerator Photo: Tom Nicol, Fermilab

A Fermilab team has completed tests for a crucial superconducting segment for the PIP-II particle accelerator, the future heart of the Fermilab accelerator chain. The segment, called a cryomodule, will be one of many, but this is the first to be fully designed, assembled and tested at Fermilab. It represents a journey of technical challenges and opportunities for innovation in superconducting accelerator technology.

From Forbes, Feb. 12, 2021: In June 2020, results from an experiment located in Italy suggested that dark matter may have been directly observed. Another experiment, conducted in China, has announced consistent data. Has dark matter been discovered? Fermilab scientist Don Lincoln explains why we’ll only know in retrospect using the next generation of detectors.

From Donne e Scienza, Feb. 5, 2021: In this interview, Fermilab scientist Anna Grassellino talks about quantum computing, her career trajectory, and women and girls in STEM.

Testing DAMA

An Italian experiment has a 20-year signal of what could be dark matter—and scientists are embarking on their most promising efforts yet to confirm or refute its results. For more than two decades, DAMA has observed a regularly changing signal that its operators think comes from our planet’s movements through the “halo” of dark matter suffusing the Milky Way galaxy.

Physicists often find thrifty, ingenious ways to reuse equipment and resources. What do you do about an 800-ton magnet originally used to discover new particles? Send it off on a months-long journey via truck, train and ship halfway across the world to detect oscillating particles called neutrinos, of course. It’s all part of the vast recycling network of the physics community.

The agreement launches a multinational collaboration to build a powerful new accelerator at DOE’s Fermilab complex. Italy and its National Institute of Nuclear Physics will provide major contributions to the construction of the 176-meter-long superconducting particle accelerator that is the centerpiece of the PIP-II project.

In this 5-minute video, INFN Vice President Antonio Masiero discusses Italy’s long history of innovation in neutrino physics and their role and expertise. They will contribute to the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility/Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment.