Baseline Site Study
Northern Illinois presents numerous possibilities for the siting of the International Linear Collider. Several sites are being explored. Each proposed site has implications that are favorable or less favorable to a successful conventional construction fulfilling the projects requirements. Different sites are conducive to near surface construction methods such as open cut or braced excavation construction while other locations are suitable for deeper rock tunneling construction methods. Proximity to Fermilab, access to power, population density, and environmental impacts are just a few of the many items that need to be considered when choosing a site in addition to cost. The various sites have features that affect initial construction cost, operational costs and ease of technical operations.
Partnering with engineers at SLAC the ILC Conventional Construction team has begun to develop methods of comparing various sites while continuing to refine and document the technical criteria. The current effort is not intended to select a potential site, nor are the sites being examined fixed in its location. In most cases, the siting can be adjusted by miles without substantially changing the pertinent site features. This process is intended to provide insight on the effects that various sites will have. Our current effort is limited to two rock tunnel design solutions and three near surface design solutions.
Work continues with geologists at NIU characterizing the geological characteristics of the rock in northern Illinois.