Viewing the Future: ILC Simulations

Jan 31, 2007
Viewing the Future: ILC Simulations
This simulation shows how the ILC would detect the production of two Z bosons. Each of the Z bosons decays into a pair of jets. (Image courtesy of Norman Graf.)

Even though it will still be several years before the International Linear Collider (ILC) comes online, scientists have already conducted millions of collision experiments, using detectors that have not been built yet. This is not the result of a new field of clairvoyant physics, but the power of computer simulations.

Scientists at SLAC and around the world are working on four detector concepts for the ILC: the silicon detector (SiD), the European-based Large Detector Concept (LDC), the Asian-based Global Large Detector (GLC), and a yet unnamed 4th detector concept. Instead of spending expensive resources on prototypes, researchers are using computer simulations to conduct virtual experiments. By doing so, they can optimize detector designs to yield the best science possible.

"We can design the detector on paper, but we make computer simulations and see if these designs are right," said John Jaros, one of the co-leaders of the SiD concept, which is being developed at SLAC. "Are we measuring what we want to measure? Are we measuring them well enough?"

A group led by SLAC physicist Norman Graf has made their simulation software available to the international community. Researchers who want to use the software submit a list of interactions they would like to simulate, as well as configurations for the detector they want to test. The software simulates the particle interactions millions of times, producing a statistical picture of what the actual experiment would look like. The results will not only aid detector designs, but also provide researchers with simulated datasets for scientific analysis.

When the ILC is complete, physicists will be able to compare these simulations with actual experiments. "That's when it gets exciting," Graf said. Deviations from simulations might indicate calculation errors or bugs in the software, but could also hint at exciting scientific discoveries.

"We prepare ourselves for the bug, but we always aspire toward new physics," Graf said.

Source: by Marcus Woo, Stanford Linear Accelerator Center

Explore further: And so they beat on, flagella against the cantilever

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Astronomers pinpoint 'Venus Zone' around stars

42 minutes ago

San Francisco State University astronomer Stephen Kane and a team of researchers presented today the definition of a "Venus Zone," the area around a star in which a planet is likely to exhibit the unlivable ...

History books becoming next fight in Texas schools

1 hour ago

The next ideological fight over new textbooks for Texas classrooms intensified Wednesday with critics lambasting history lessons that they say exaggerate the influence of Moses in American democracy and negatively portray ...

Amazon deforestation up 29 pc in 2013

2 hours ago

Deforestation in the Amazon rose 29 percent between August 2012 and July of last year to 5,891 square kilometers (2,275 square miles), Brazilian officials said Wednesday, posting an amended figure.

Recommended for you

And so they beat on, flagella against the cantilever

18 hours ago

A team of researchers at Boston University and Stanford University School of Medicine has developed a new model to study the motion patterns of bacteria in real time and to determine how these motions relate ...

Tandem microwave destroys hazmat, disinfects

22 hours ago

Dangerous materials can be destroyed, bacteria spores can be disinfected, and information can be collected that reveals the country of origin of radiological isotopes - all of this due to a commercial microwave ...

Cornell theorists continue the search for supersymmetry

Sep 16, 2014

(Phys.org) —It was a breakthrough with profound implications for the world as we know it: the Higgs boson, the elementary particle that gives all other particles their mass, discovered at the Large Hadron ...

How did evolution optimize circadian clocks?

Sep 12, 2014

(Phys.org) —From cyanobacteria to humans, many terrestrial species have acquired circadian rhythms that adapt to sunlight in order to increase survival rates. Studies have shown that the circadian clocks ...

User comments : 0