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John O | January 2019

Innovative magnets being used in new energy-recovery accelerator being built at Cornell

By Josh Perry, Editor


Cutting edge magnets designed at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory (Upton, N.Y.) are being used in the Cornell-Brookhaven Energy-Recovery Linac Test Accelerator (CBETA) that is being constructed at Cornell University (Ithaca, N.Y.).


Members of the Brookhaven National Laboratory team with the completed magnet assemblies for the CBETA project. (Brookhaven Lab)


The 216 fixed-field, alternating-gradient, permanent magnet assemblies from Brookhaven Lab simultaneously carry four particle beams at very different energy levels, according to a report from the lab. The fixed fields vary in strength at different points within each of the circular magnet’s aperture to allow each beam to find its right spot.


“In CBETA, a chain of these magnets strung together like beads on a necklace will form what’s called a return loop that repeatedly delivers bunches of electrons to a linear accelerator (linac),” the article explained. “Four trips through the superconducting radiofrequency cavities of the linac will ramp up the electrons’ energy, and another four will ramp them down so the energy stored in the beam can be recovered and reused for the next round of acceleration.”


The energy recovery from using the beams in experiments is 99.9 percent, according to the lab, which is a “potential game-changer” for efficiency. By using permanent magnet assemblies rather than electromagnets, scientists also have a constant supply of particle beams and do not need to wait for electricity to ramp up and meet power demands.


 “Engineers in Brookhaven’s Superconducting Magnet Division took precise measurements of each magnet’s field strength and used a magnetic field correction system developed and built by Brooks to fine-tune the fields to achieve the precision needed for CBETA,” the article continued. “Mahler then led the assembly of the finished magnets onto girder plates that will hold them in perfect alignment in the finished accelerator.”


See images from the CBETA in the video below:

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