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International Journal of High-Energy Physics

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CERN Courier magazine: May 2018 digital edition

Cern Courier

Welcome to the digital edition of the May 2018 issue of CERN Courier.

Radio-frequency cavities drive accelerators across the world, their weird and wonderful metallic structures sustaining strong electromagnetic fields that shunt charged particles to higher energies. Particle physicists have pioneered the development of the most powerful superconducting cavities, and CERN is at the core of this effort. Currently installed in the Super Proton Synchrotron for their first tests in a proton beam are two superconducting “crab” cavities, named for their ability to tilt proton bunches sideways to ensure maximum collision intensity. The technology is at the heart of the high-luminosity LHC upgrade and is based on cavities made entirely from niobium. But CERN is also making huge strides with advanced niobium-coated copper cavities. Once the pinnacle of radio-frequency technology at CERN, driving the upgraded Large Electron Positron collider during the 1990s, niobium–copper cavities are back and even beginning to challenge the performance of their bulk-niobium counterparts. Such developments underpin the recent energy upgrade of the radioactive-beam facility ISOLDE and are key to next-generation accelerators at CERN and elsewhere.

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