Fermilab’s New Muon Laboratory is being converted into the new home of a sixty-meter-long accelerator that will serve as a test area for ILC R&D. Prior to the conversion, the New Muon Laboratory housed the 2000-ton Chicago cyclotron magnet for more than 24 years. The renovated area will now be used to test cryomodules for the ILC with an electron beam.
A main section of the facility will be devoted to a 75-meter-long test cave that will house three cryomodules. Each 12-meter-long cryomodule will contain eight superconducting 9-cell cavities in a vacuum-sealed container that will be cooled down to 1.8 degrees Kelvin. Together, the three cryomodules plus the radio frequency (RF) power systems will make up one complete RF unit for ILC R&D. The facility will also contain a brand new control room and cryogenic system.
The first cryomodule was installed in August, 2008 and the second is expected in the Fall of 2009. A 5 MW (megawatt) RF system, located right outside the test cave, will power these first two cryomodules.
While the first two cryomodules will be a 3rd generation design (Type III+), the final cryomodule will be the new 4th generation design (Type IV). This 4th generation cryomodule will be the first one ever built, and testing it will play an important role in determining the final cryomodule design for the ILC.
Testing the full string of three cryomodules, however, will require a larger, 10 MW RF system. Current plans call for installing a Marx modulator, developed by a team at SLAC, to generate the extra power necessary to operate a complete RF unit. This new type of modulator has already reached important milestones at SLAC and, if successful, will make it feasible to provide power to accelerate the particles in the ILC in a more reliable but less expensive way.
While the main purpose of this facility is to test cryomodules with beam, scientists from around the world will also be able to use the facility for a number of other ILC R&D purposes including the testing of controls, diagnostics and instrumentation. In addition, there are plans to extend the building so that it will be long enough to contain two complete RF units, or six cryomodules.NML Facility- Update