symmetry magazine

dimensions of particle physics

dimensions of particle physics

A joint Fermilab/SLAC publication



March 2014

  • March 18, 2014
    deconstruction: Particle physics in the United States
    More than 150 US universities and laboratories are engaged in particle physics research and technology innovation, playing important roles in the Higgs boson and cosmic inflation discoveries—and the many more revelations still to come.

October 2013

  • October 1, 2013
    deconstruction: US participation in the Higgs discovery
    The search for the Higgs at experiments at the Large Hadron Collider was an international effort involving thousands of people, with physicists and engineers from US institutions playing a significant role throughout.

June 2013

  • June 25, 2013
    deconstruction: Around the US in 17 labs
    Chart a course to knowledge with symmetry’s interactive map of all 17 US Department of Energy national laboratories.

May 2013

  • May 14, 2013
    deconstruction: The cherry pie collider
    What’s the next step in particle colliders? Symmetry takes a trip into the kitchen pantry to find out.

February 2013

  • February 14, 2013
    deconstruction: Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment
    The Long-Baseline Neutrino Experiment aims to discover whether neutrinos violate the fundamental matter–antimatter symmetry of physics.

November 2012

  • November 13, 2012
    deconstruction: How to make a neutrino beam
    Neutrinos are elusive particles that are difficult to study, yet they may help explain some of the biggest mysteries of our universe. Using accelerators to make neutrino beams, scientists are unveiling the neutrinos’ secrets.

August 2012

  • August 1, 2012
    deconstruction: Big data
    Big science takes both big data and big cooperation. For the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, storing, analyzing and accessing 25 petabytes of data each year requires a worldwide effort that spans more than 100 institutions in 36 countries. Here’s how it works.

October 2011

  • October 1, 2011
    deconstruction: Neutrino experiments
    Neutrinos zip straight through the Earth, while rarely leaving a trace. Yet these particles may hold answers to many of the key questions of 21st century particle physics. Around the world, scientists are creating an array of increasingly sophisticated neutrino experiments to find these answers.

May 2011

  • May 1, 2011
    deconstruction: Dark Energy Camera goes to Chile
    Doing big science takes big effort and big cooperation. Building and installing one of the world''s largest digital cameras to conduct the most extensive galaxy survey to date requires scientists and manufacturers from across the globe. Researchers from 26 institutions enlisted the help of 129 companies in the United States and about half a dozen foreign ones to fabricate the often one-of-a-kind components for the Dark Energy Camera.

February 2011

  • February 1, 2011
    deconstruction: Cosmic gall
    In December 1960, The New Yorker published John Updike's poem about the neutrino, a ghost-like particle discovered a few years before. Titled “Cosmic Gall,” Updike's poem examines the neutrino's bizarre properties. Little did he know how weird things would get: Scientists not only found two more types of neutrinos, but also discovered that the three types transform into each other. Here is a brief summary of what we know about the neutrino 40 years later.

August 2010

  • August 1, 2010
    deconstruction: Isotope production
    Hundreds of thousands of patients around the world depend on medical imaging to reveal injuries, diagnose disease, or learn how a course of treatment such as chemotherapy is affecting their bodies. Physicians use the radioactive isotope technetium-99m in more than 80 percent of medical imaging procedures. But its global supply is in jeopardy.

December 2009

  • December 1, 2009
    deconstruction: Fermilab rap
    For a growing number of so-called Nerdcore rappers, the message is that people need to support basic research and math and science education if they want to hand future generations a nation worth bragging about.

October 2009

  • October 1, 2009
    deconstruction: Livingston plot
    Physicists have been inventing new types of accelerators to propel charged particles to higher and higher energies for more than 80 years. Today, scientists estimate that more than 17,000 accelerators are in operation around the world—in industry, in hospitals, and at research institutions.

July 2009

  • July 1, 2009
    deconstruction: Periodic table
    Look at the periodic table of elements, and you'd be hard pressed to find an element that is not used in physics. But what are the most important elements for building accelerators, detecting particles, and solving the mysteries of the universe? The search for answers takes us on a winding journey that includes ancient shipwrecks, trendy earrings, and the sound of dark matter. symmetry intern Kristine Crane asks Fermilab physicists about the elements they could not live without.

May 2009

  • May 1, 2009
    deconstruction: Standard Model discoveries
    Sixteen elementary types of particles form the basis for the theoretical framework known as the Standard Model of fundamental particles and forces. J.J. Thomson discovered the electron in 1897, while scientists at Fermilab saw the first direct interaction of a tau neutrino with matter less than 10 years ago.

December 2008

  • December 1, 2008
    deconstruction: Magnetic Resonance Imaging
    The life-saving medical technology known as Magnetic Resonance Imaging, or MRI, makes detailed images of soft tissue in the body, nearly eliminating the need for exploratory surgery. Unlike X-rays, it can distinguish gray matter from white matter in the brain, cancerous from noncancerous tissue, and muscles from organs, as well as reveal blood flow and signs of stroke.

August 2008

  • August 1, 2008
    deconstruction: COUPP bubble chamber
    Donald Glaser of the University of California, Berkeley, won a Nobel Prize for inventing the bubble chamber in 1952 as a way of detecting subatomic particles. Now a University of Chicago professor, Juan Collar, is leading the charge to make the bubble chamber cool and cutting-edge again.

November 2007

  • November 1, 2007
    deconstruction: Author list
    The Collider Detector at Fermilab (CDF) is one of two experiments that record the debris of powerful proton-antiproton collisions at the Tevatron particle collider to explore subatomic processes. Analyzing the data, physicists gain a better understanding of the nature of the universe and what it is made of.

July 2007

  • July 1, 2007
    deconstruction: Chalkboard
    Chalkboard discussions usually arise spontaneously, with one person explaining something to a small group standing nearby. Scratchings on the board tend to represent fragments of a conversation rather than a complete train of thought. “I may write an equation and then talk for 10 minutes and then write another equation not directly related to the first one,” says theorist Tom Rizzo of the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center.

March 2007

  • March 1, 2007
    deconstruction: KATRIN's odyssey
    In late 2006, a component of the Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Experiment (KATRIN) traveled from Deggendorf, Germany, to a laboratory in Karlsruhe, only 400 kilometers away. The trip wouldn’t have been a notable event, except that the spectrometer, an instrument used to measure the masses of particles, followed a near-9000-kilometer route to get from one town to the other.