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CERN sets course for extra-low-energy antiprotons

by CERN October 27th, 2011

Geneva, 28 September 2011. The kick-off meeting for ELENA, the Extra Low Energy Antiproton Ring, starts today at CERN1. Approved by CERN Council in June this year, ELENA is scheduled to deliver its first antiprotons in 2016. This week’s kick-off meeting brings together scientists from Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Sweden, the UK and the USA. The project is led by CERN.

“ELENA is a new facility aimed to deliver antiprotons at the lowest energies ever reached in order to improve the study of antimatter,” said CERN’s Stéphan Maury, Head of the ELENA project.

ELENA will consist of a small new decelerator ring that will be installed in same building that houses CERN’s existing Antiproton Decelerator (AD). It will slow antiprotons down to under a fiftieth of the current AD energy, bringing an improvement of a factor of 10-100 in antiproton trapping efficiency. At the AD, antiprotons have to be slowed down by passing them through a series of foils, a process that results in the loss of some 99.9% of the antiprotons extracted from the AD before they reach the experiments.

 

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