CERN Member States prepare for a decision on the Large Hadron Collider in June 1994

The CERN1 Council, where the representatives of the 19 Member States of the Organization decide on scientific programmes and financial resources, held its 99th session on 15 April under the chairmanship of Prof Hubert Curien (France).

Council votes overwhelmingly for resolution in support of LHC

Council delegates voted overwhelmingly - 18 Member States for, one abstention - to adopt the following resolution on the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and CERN's long-term scientific programme.

Council:

  • confirming its belief as stated in the Council's December 1991 Resolution that the LHC is the right machine for particle physics and for CERN;
  • being impressed by the scientific case and by the economical utilisation in the LHC project of investments previously made at CERN;
  • notes the overall strategy of CERN proposed for the years 1995 - 2005 and supports the Management in promoting the LHC as the central element of the long-term programme of CERN;
  • wishes to see the LHC implemented as part of the basic programme of the Laboratory, and wishes the project and its financing to be approved by general consensus;
  • is conscious of and welcomes the world interest in the project, wishes that involvement of non-Member State physicists should be on the understanding that usage on a significant scale must involve the contribution of resources to the project by the non-Member States concerned, and supports the prospect of creating an appropriate status for the participation of non- Member States making significant contributions;
  • notes that a flexible range of funding options exists, building where appropriate on current expectations concerning supplementary contributions, including options which would allow the LHC to be constructed without such contributions;
  • endorses the proposed comprehensive review of the progress of the project, to be carried out at an appropriate moment and in any case before the end of 1997 in order to define more precisely the timetable for execution of the project in the light of the foreseen funding;
  • expresses its best intention to move to a decision to approve the LHC during the first half of 1994.

Successful test of 10 metre LHC Magnet

A major milestone in magnet development was passed when the first 10 metre long prototype bending magnet for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) was successfully tested at CERN on 14 April when the magnet reached a field of 8.67 Tesla (T). For the protons in LHC to reach the collision energy of 14 TeV, LHC's high technology superconducting electromagnets have to provide a magnetic field of 8.65 T in two beam apertures with the superconducting cable windings operating at a temperature of 1.8K (-271.2û C).

The successful prototype magnet was made in Italy and is the result of collaboration between CERN and the Italian Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN). It is one of a series of seven prototypes, designed at CERN and being built in European Industry. In the tests, the magnet in its cryostat of superfluid Helium reached the LHC design field of 8.65 T at the first attempt without any "training", the settling of the superconducting coils into the optimum position within the magnet. The first "quench", when the coils lost their superconductivity due to micro-movements of the Niobium/Titanium conductors, occurred at 8.67 T. The magnet was then powered again to 8.73 T and ran at this field level for about 15 min, without any further quench.

This remarkable result confirms the validity of the magnet design and the ability of European Industry to take up the challenge of constructing the LHC.

Footnote(s)

1. CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, has its headquarters in Geneva. At present, its Member States are Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, the Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Israel, the Russian Federation, Turkey, Yugoslavia (status suspended after UN embargo, June 1992), the European Commission and Unesco have observer status.

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