LBNL: World's Most Sensitive Dark Matter Detector

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LBNL: World's Most Sensitive Dark Matter Detector

Post by bystander » Tue Sep 27, 2016 4:09 pm

Construction of World’s Most Sensitive Dark Matter Detector Moves Forward
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory | 2016 Sep 26

Latest approval step paves the way for underground experiment’s startup in 2020

LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ), a next-generation dark matter detector that will be at least 100 times more sensitive than its predecessor, has cleared another approval milestone and is on schedule to begin its deep-underground hunt for theoretical particles known as WIMPs, or weakly interacting massive particles, in 2020.

WIMPs are among the top prospects for explaining dark matter, the unseen stuff that we have observed only through gravitational effects. ...

The experiment is designed to tease out dark matter signals from within a chamber filled with 10 metric tons of purified liquid xenon, one of the rarest elements on Earth. The project is supported by a collaboration of more than 30 institutions and about 200 scientists worldwide. ...

LZ is named for the merger of two dark matter detection experiments: the Large Underground Xenon experiment (LUX) and the U.K.-based ZonEd Proportional scintillation in Liquid Noble gases experiment (ZEPLIN). LUX, a smaller liquid xenon-based underground experiment at SURF will be dismantled to make way for the new project. ...
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Brown/LBNL/SURF: Massive New Dark Matter Detector Gets Its 'Eyes'

Post by bystander » Mon Dec 17, 2018 9:35 pm

Massive New Dark Matter Detector Gets Its 'Eyes'
Brown University | Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) | 2018 Dec 17

Array of light-sensing photomultiplier tubes for the LUX-ZEPLIN dark matter detector arrives in South Dakota

Click to play embedded YouTube video.
The LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) dark matter detector, which will soon start its search for the elusive particles thought to account for a majority of matter in the universe, had its first set of “eyes” delivered Thursday.

The first of two large arrays of photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) — powerful light sensors that can detect the faintest of flashes — completed a 2,000-mile journey by truck from Rhode Island to the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in Lead, South Dakota, where LZ is scheduled to begin its dark matter search in 2020.

The second array will arrive in January. When the LZ detector is completed and switched on, the PMT arrays will keep careful watch on LZ’s 10-ton tank of liquid xenon, looking for the tell-tale twin flashes of light produced if a dark matter particle bumps into a xenon atom inside the tank. ...

The LZ experiment, a collaboration of more than 250 scientists from 38 institutions worldwide, aims to capture one of those fleetingly rare WIMP interactions, and thereby characterize the particles thought to make up more than 80 percent of the matter in the universe. The detector will be the most sensitive ever built: 100 times more sensitive than the LUX detector, which wrapped up its dark matter search at SURF in 2016. ...
Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
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LBNL: Scientists Piece Together Largest US Dark Matter Experiment

Post by bystander » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:40 pm

Some Assembly Required: Scientists Piece Together
Largest U.S.-Based Dark Matter Experiment

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory | 2019 Jul 16

Most of the remaining components needed to fully assemble an underground dark matter-search experiment called LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) arrived at the project’s South Dakota home during a rush of deliveries in June.

When complete, LZ will be the largest, most sensitive U.S.-based experiment yet that is designed to directly detect dark matter particles. Scientists around the world have been trying for decades to solve the mystery of dark matter, which makes up about 85 percent of all matter in the universe though we have so far only detected it indirectly through observed gravitational effects.

The bulk of the digital components for LZ’s electronics system, which is designed to transmit and record signals from ever-slight particle interactions in LZ’s core detector vessel, were among the new arrivals at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF). SURF, the site of a former gold mine now dedicated to a broad spectrum of scientific research, was also home to a predecessor search experiment called LUX.

A final set of snugly fitting acrylic vessels, which will be filled with a special liquid designed to identify false dark matter signals in LZ’s inner detector, also arrived at SURF in June.

Also, the last two of four intricately woven wire grids that are essential to maintain a constant electric field and extract signals from the experiment’s inner detector, also called the time projection chamber, arrived in June (see related article). ...
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Interactions: LZ Time Projection Chamber Assembly Completed

Post by bystander » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:21 pm

LZ Time Projection Chamber Assembly Completed
Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) | via Interactions Collaboration | 2019 Aug 06

LZ Completes TPC Assembly ~ Credit: Sanford Lab
On July 26, researchers working in the Surface Assembly Lab (SAL) at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (Sanford Lab) had quite an audience. Nearly a dozen onlookers, including researchers, technicians and one very curious writer, peered through two windows into the cleanroom. From this vantage point, they watched researchers carefully peel back a protective layer of foil to reveal -- for perhaps the last time in half a decade -- the innermost piece of the LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) dark matter experiment.

What they revealed was LZ’s xenon detector, called a Time Projection Chamber, or TPC. Researchers recently completed the assembly of this impressive structure, a gleaming white column standing nearly nine-feet tall, that houses key components needed for LZ’s dark matter search. ...

While it was unwrapped, researchers in full-body cleanroom suits took final measurements and ran tests on the instrument, which will soon be sealed inside a cryostat vessel and transported to the 4850 Level of Sanford Lab. Once installed underground, the TPC will be hidden within layers of protective shielding until the experiment has finished taking data. ...
Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor