At the dawn of a new decade, ATAP and Berkeley Lab look forward to many exciting opportunities. A recent Nature paper by a UK-based international collaboration describes the first-ever demonstration of ionization cooling of muons. The demonstration was made possible by a pair of superconducting spectrometer solenoids designed, built, and delivered by ATAP, the Engineering Division, and an industrial partner.
ATAP researchers (with the Berkeley Accelerator Controls and Instrumentation Program particularly well represented) taught four courses at the Winter 2020 session of US Particle Accelerator School. We have been deeply involved in USPAS since its early days, a key aspect of our investment in the future workforce of the accelerator community. More than 80 people who were, had been, or would become employees of ATAP and its predecessor organizations have taught a total of more than 100 courses and lectures. Many of these courses are team-taught with colleagues from other institutions, forging lasting connections throughout the accelerator community.
Quantum information science, which holds profoundly transformational potential, is another area where ATAP could make contributions and reap benefits. Quantum innovations have potential to revolutionize networking as well as processing, and Berkeley Lab (headquarters of the Energy Sciences Network) is a stakeholder and innovator in both areas. We recently helped organize DOE’s first Quantum Networking Blueprint Workshop, which drew some 70 participants from national laboratories and universities.
As we write this, back-to-back scientific-community events hosted by LBNL are helping guide the future in two other areas: the Berkeley Lab-headquartered US Magnet Development Program is holding its annual meeting, and many USMDP researchers will stay to participate in the IEEE Low Temperature Superconductor Workshop.
The Advanced Light Source Upgrade Project recently received Critical Decision 3a. This step in the Department of Energy’s project-management process allows Berkeley Lab to get a head start on ALS-U by building a crucial part called the accumulator ring. The ultimate result will be a complete re-envisioning of this high-profile user facility, putting it at the forefront of synchrotron light source performance for another 20 years. The combined expertise of ATAP and the Engineering and ALS Divisions will make this dream a reality, enabling a new generation of discovery science throughout the broad research portfolio of ALS users.
Watch this space in the coming months for more news about these and many more of our efforts, including state-of-the-art accelerator modeling; machine learning and artificial intelligence; laser-plasma acceleration and development of innovative lasers to power it; stronger and better superconducting magnets; and accelerator controls and instrumentation.
All these seemingly disparate elements are actually interrelated, as designing and building state-of-the-art particle accelerators calls for integrating expertise in a wide variety of disciplines. ATAP and our partners throughout the Laboratory (notably the Engineering Division), other institutions, and the private sector can do amazing things together, developing accelerators and putting beams on target for the benefit of the DOE Office of Science portfolio and beyond. With a team poised to build on the past and move into the future, we can make this a decade of marvels throughout the application spaces of particle accelerators.