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Energy-saving 'super-magnets' could power our particle accelerators of the future

Particle accelerators have been responsible for achieving some of the greatest scientific breakthroughs in human history - CERN’s Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland enabled scientists to discover the Higgs boson. While the LHC will continue to deliver ground-breaking science at CERN for years to come, physicists are already considering and planning for their next large scale research facility. One of the future particle accelerators that is being proposed is the Compact Linear Collider, or CLIC.

One of the key challenges faced when designing and building a next generation particle accelerator is energy consumption and the associated financial and environmental cost. A large portion of the energy requirements is in the flexible, tuneable electromagnets that are used to bend and focus the beam, which require a considerable amount of energy to operate.  Engineers at STFC’s Daresbury Laboratory have successfully designed and built a new type of energy-saving magnet, the Zero Power Tuneable Optics magnet (ZEPTO) that could power our next generation of particle accelerator at a fraction of the energy cost.  

STFC’s Ben Shepherd, Head of Magnetics at Daresbury Laboratory, has been invited to present on this fascinating work at the opening session of the 11th International Particle Accelerator Conference, IPAC 2020, in France early next year.  IPAC is the main international event for the world-wide accelerator community and industry, attended by more than 1,500 participants every year.  Ben’s talk, ‘Permanent Magnets in Accelerators’ will provide a fascinating overview of the design and development of the ZEPTO magnet.  Hear more about Ben’s fascinating work: 

Hear more about STFC’s Ben Shepherd’s fascinating work on the ZEPTO magnets
(Credit: STFC)

27 March 2020
STFC at STEM for BRITAIN
STFC at STEM for BRITAIN

The recent STEM for BRITAIN Awards held in UK Parliament featured a number of STFC-funded students, with work ranging from microscope cameras and Dark Matter data analysis to algorithms increasing x-ray image quality.

26 March 2020
The Harwell company on a mission to clean up Space
The Harwell company on a mission to clean up Space

From non-functioning satellites, to fragments as small as a millimetre, the European Space Agency says there’s more than 8,000 tonnes of debris in Space.

23 March 2020
In Space: 2 deployers and 6 ultra-miniaturized satellites
In Space: 2 deployers and 6 ultra-miniaturized satellites

Fast growing SME Alba Orbital, comes to the Higgs Centre for Innovation to test their ground-breaking space hardware.

13 March 2020
Daresbury technology helps beam physicists into unexplored territory at CERN
Daresbury technology helps beam physicists into unexplored territory at CERN

Technology developed at STFC’s Daresbury Laboratory has played an exciting role in an experiment at CERN to shed light on how heavy elements, such as gold, are formed in the universe.

02 March 2020
PIP-II gets final review approval
PIP-II gets final review approval

A major review of the $888 million Proton Improvement Plan II (PIP-II) at Fermilab, America, has been conducted – with Daresbury Laboratory receiving strong acknowledgement for its in-kind contributions to the international project.

24 February 2020
Higgs Centre for Innovation incubator company – Touchlab – qualify on $10M ANA Avatar XPRIZE Competition
Higgs Centre for Innovation incubator company – Touchlab – qualify on $10M ANA Avatar XPRIZE Competition

The ANA Avatar XPRIZE Competition is a global competition, sponsored by All Nippon Airways (ANA). Over 4 years, it will challenge teams around the world to develop a remotely-controlled teleoperated Avatar system.

17 February 2020
Central American University visits the Higgs Centre for Innovation to test Guatemala's first ever CubeSat satellite
Central American University visits the Higgs Centre for Innovation to test Guatemala's first ever CubeSat satellite

The Higgs Centre for Innovation – a ground-breaking new business incubation hub, created by the Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC) in partnership with the University of Edinburgh has welcomed a university driving its country’s first ever space mission.

14 February 2020
Meet Jonathan Strachan, Senior Mechanical Engineer - He shares with us the MOONS vacuum vessel story
Meet Jonathan Strachan, Senior Mechanical Engineer - He shares with us the MOONS vacuum vessel story

“We think MOONS has the biggest vacuum vessel in astronomy. Do you know of a bigger one?” ask scientists and engineers at the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s (STFC’s) UK Astronomy Technology centre (UK ATC) in Edinburgh.

04 February 2020
STFC's Higgs Centre for Innovation welcomes Crover Ltd
STFC's Higgs Centre for Innovation welcomes Crover Ltd

The Higgs Centre for Innovation – a Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) business incubation hub – welcomes cutting-edge agri-tech start-up Crover Ltd, to the European Space Agency Business Incubation Centre UK (ESA BIC UK). We catch up with Founder and CEO Lorenzo Conti to find out more about the company and why he chose the ESA BIC UK at the Higgs

21 January 2020
Could mirrors for space be the next incredible object to be 3D printed?
Could mirrors for space be the next incredible object to be 3D printed?

Teams within the UK’s Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) have been working together, and with a community of universities and national laboratories to explore just how this technique could be used to create lightweight mirrors for space – when weight and volume limits are critical!

Last updated: 28 October 2019

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