Mittwoch, 23. März 2016

Day 3: Newport News Trip

Jefferson Lab, Christopher Newport University

Stefan Ruzicka - March 23, 2016 

Jafferson Lab Campus ( 

On the third day of our USA trip we were in Newport News, VA, north of Norfolk. There is, among other things, the JeffersonLab (JLab), which is a particle physics research by the US Department of Energy and works together with several universities from the region . We had an appointment with Prof. Helmut Baumgart, who originated from Germany and teaches at ODU in the Electrical & Computer Engineering department. He led us through the JLab.

The Jefferson Lab is famous for microelectronics and we could take a look at some of their well-equipped laboratories. We look at very expensive electron microscopes, which are necessary to observe extremely small circuits. The microscopes in JLab have a resolution of a few nanometers (10-9 m) and cost up to several million dollars. 

After a short lunch break with Mexican food and chlorine Coke, we were able to take a look at the highlight of Jefferson Labs - a 12 GeV particle accelerator.

This is one of the most powerful in the world and has been underground built on the site of JLab.

We visited workshops and laboratories at JLab, led by Charles Reece, director of SRF Institute Accelerator Division, his amount is to make the particle accelerator more powerful and efficient. The costs of this facility are to operate gigantic . The whole system must be cooled to freezing temperatures and consumes about 15 MW power. Resonators are used to generate the high-energy electric fields. A single resonator cost about $ 2million, and can withstand stresses of up to 40 megavolts. 418 of these resonators are constructed in the accelerator; each section can produce about 0.6 GeV of electric field. A particle can pass through the resonators several times because of the elliptical arrangement and thus can further increase the particle energy. The big scissors of high performance and extreme precision make this project extremely complex and justify extreme costs.

Afterwards, we visited one of the most impressive campuses and could see with our own eyes how to build a university campus with a lot of money. The Christopher Newport University offers an impressive campus for about 5,000 students. We could catch some fascinating insights into the lives of students in the US.

On an area of approximately 110 hectares, the campus is full of imposing buildings. Libraries and lounges are extravagantly and very classy designed.

The day is slowly coming to an end and we returned to Norfolk. The USSWisconson was our last common goal for this day. It is one of the largest battleships ever built.

The day was completed perfectly in a small Italian restaurant nearby the hotel with huge pizzas. And thus a very exciting and instructive day in Virginia ends. 


By Stefan

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