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The First Day – LHC Perspective September 18, 2008

Posted by gordonwatts in LHC.

image Frank Zimmermann gave a talk on the LHC and its status in a SLAC seminar. Some amazing pictures. I recommend taking a look at that PDF.

Some comments that I heard made that weren’t written in the slides:

  • If the initial magnet commissioning rate had continued, the LHC wouldn’t have been ready until 2100!
  • Ramping up the LHC’s magnets requires a huge amount of energy. Of course, once they are ramped up they store a lot of energy in the magnetic field. When they ramp them down it has to go somewhere — so they put it back into the electrical grid! Just like a Pryus! 😉
  • The quench resisters have to dissipate so much power in milliseconds they are basically in large vats of water for cooling.
  • When a single magnet quenches all the magnets in that sector are powered down.
  • The quench from one magnet can propagate to adjacent magnets because of helium heating. The first magnet heats the liquid helium, which then flows to the next magnet. However, the fact that they power down all the magnets in a sector prevents a chain reaction from occurring.
  • Check out the size of the diode! And that thing is built to be able to absorb the current for only 100-200 seconds! Wow!
  • His 10 December is really 10 September (misprint).
  • He swears that no practice run before the 10th of September other than the public injection into about 20% of the machine during previous tests. Wow.

The picture above is the same beam, appearing twice. Which means it has gone all the way around the ring. And on the first day. I heard a rumor that the folks in the control room were thinking they would have to make it harder so the press remained interested. 😉

Congrats to everyone who is working on getting the machine up and going!

UPDATE: Fixed up the link to the slides. Sorry about that!



1. Marco - September 18, 2008

Gordon, could you please fix the link to Frank’s seminar ?

2. Gordon Watts - September 19, 2008

Fixed! Sorry about that!

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