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US magnet puts the LHC on track for its first major upgrade

14 July 2013

US national laboratories have collaborated to build the new magnets CERN needs to increase the Large Hadron Collider's luminosity by an order of magnitude.

HQ02a is a superconducting quadrupole magnet made from high performance niobium tin that will play a key role in developing a new beam focusing system for CERN’s Large Hadron Collider

The US LHC Accelerator Program (LARP) has successfully tested a powerful superconducting quadrupole magnet that will play a key role in developing a new beam focusing system for CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC).

This advanced system, together with other major upgrades to be implemented over the next decade, will allow the LHC to produce ten times more high-energy collisions than it was originally designed for.

Dubbed HQ02a, the latest in LARP’s series of High-Field Quadrupole magnets is wound with cables of the brittle but high-performance superconductor niobium tin. Compared with the final-focus quadrupoles presently in place at the LHC, which are made with niobium titanium, HQ02a has a larger aperture and superconducting coils designed to operate at a higher magnetic field. In a recent test at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), HQ02a achieved all its challenging objectives.

LARP is a collaboration among the US Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory (Brookhaven), Fermilab, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), and the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC), working in close partnership with CERN.  LARP has also supported research at the University of Texas at Austin and Old Dominion University.

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