Researchers examine a large-diameter blue curved magnet

Concepts such as bent dipoles and quadrupoles can enable compact beam-delivery gantries for particle therapy.

In particle accelerators, magnets serve as optics for charged particles—steering, focusing, and otherwise controlling the behavior of electrons, protons, and heavier ions. The use of accelerated charged particles is ubiquitous in science to study the fundamental building blocks of matter and to probe materials and phenomena.

Applications such as proton and ion medical therapy can benefit from superconducting “gantries” that bring the accelerated particles to the patient for tumor treatment.

For light sources—user facilities invaluable in many areas of research— the undulators (magnetic arrays that move an electron beam back and forth, causing it to emit focused beams of X-rays) can be significantly enhanced with superconducting magnets, enabling higher performance. In particular, superconducting undulators can enable significant advances in future free-electron laser facilities.

Two researchers discuss machine tooling that makes a magnet winding from a cable.

Researchers discuss the design of the winding tooling for the Berkeley Lab sextupole magnet at the heart of an electron cyclotron resonance ion source for the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams.

In nuclear physics, strong superconducting magnets can trap a plasma, enabling the generation of high-charge state ions through a concept known as the electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) source. One of our advanced magnets is vital to the ECR ion source that Berkeley Lab delivered for the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) at Michigan State University, a DOE facility for nuclear science.

In these areas, and many others, SMP has applied its expertise to advance technical solutions and enable new science. Our program collaborates with colleagues from the US and internationally to support and enable new science endeavors. Furthermore, we partner with other US labs and industry to transfer our technology, thereby broadening our impact and strengthening the community.