LCLS Beam Already in Action

Aug 06, 2007
LCLS Beam Already in Action
The LCLS electron beam incident on a profile monitor at 135 MeV in the injector spectrometer. This image is taken with the transverse deflecting cavity (LOLA) switched on, producing the curvature, which demonstrates that the beam is accelerated on the crest of the radio frequency wave. Credit: SLAC

The Near and Far Experimental halls are still under construction, but already scientists are putting the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) beam to use. The LCLS electron beam, first generated in April, is now traveling from its source near Sector 20, through the Beam Switchyard at the end of the linear accelerator and into End Station A, one of SLAC's original experimental halls.

The one-kilometer journey not only helps the LCLS team commission components along the route, but the beam is already proving useful to scientists working on a diverse set of experiments in End Station A.

In early July, the beam was first pressed into service to help set up a suite of International Linear Collider (ILC) experiments coordinated by Mike Woods. The ILC research is to develop beam instrumentation and to characterize wakefield effects that degrade beam quality. During setup, the ILC experimenters were able to provide diagnostics for the charge, energy spread and jitter of the LCLS beam.

In a new experiment, currently operating during owl shifts, the LCLS beam strikes a copper block, creating a field of radiation. Spare permanent magnet pieces from the LCLS undulators—which will create x-ray pulses in the finished machine—are strategically arranged around the copper to receive an amount of radiation similar to what the magnets would be exposed to in the undulators if the beam went astray.

"We need to learn how much demagnetization takes place so we can protect the undulator magnets for 20 years of operation," said Undulator Physics Manager Heinz-Dieter Nuhn. The information will help in developing a beam loss monitor that can turn the beam off if it will cause too much damage to the magnets.

In mid-August, the beam will test detector components. For 12 hours a day, the LCLS beam will smash into a target at the Beam Switchyard, creating a secondary beam of electrons that simulate particles created in a collision. Jerry Va'vra is testing a prototype for particle identification that might significantly improve particle identification at a next-generation “Super-B Factory.” Six inches upstream, Tim Nelson will test a new kind of readout chip for the tracker and calorimeter of an ILC silicon detector.

In the midst of all this experimentation, the LCLS continues its work. "We're trying to cooperate with other programs while still aggressively commissioning the LCLS," said Commissioning Manager Paul Emma.

Source: by Heather Rock Woods, SLAC Today

Explore further: Heat makes electrons spin in magnetic superconductors

Related Stories

Google launches its own mobile telephone service

1 hour ago

Google said Wednesday it was launching its own US mobile wireless service, with considerable potential savings for customers using their devices at home and for international travel.

Recommended for you

Heat makes electrons spin in magnetic superconductors

12 hours ago

Physicists have shown how heat can be exploited for controlling magnetic properties of matter. The finding helps in the development of more efficient mass memories. The result was published yesterday in Physical Review Le ...

ICARUS neutrino experiment to move to Fermilab

Apr 23, 2015

A group of scientists led by Nobel laureate Carlo Rubbia will transport the world's largest liquid-argon neutrino detector across the Atlantic Ocean from CERN to its new home at the US Department of Energy's ...

National security on the move with high energy physics

Apr 23, 2015

Scientists are developing a portable technology that will safely and quickly detect nuclear material hidden within large objects such as shipping cargo containers or sealed waste drums. The researchers, led ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.