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European astroparticle, nuclear and particle physicists join forces

29 November 2019
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The first joint meeting of the European Committee for Future Accelerators (ECFA), the Nuclear Physics European Collaboration Committee (NuPECC), and the Astroparticle Physics European Consortium (APPEC) took place from 14 – 16 October in Orsay, France. Making progress in domains such as dark matter, neutrinos and gravitational waves increasingly requires interdisciplinary approaches to scientific and technological challenges, and the new Joint ECFA-NuPECC-APPEC Seminar (JENAS) events are designed to reinforce links between astroparticle, nuclear and particle physicists.

Jointly organised by LAL-Orsay, IPN-Orsay, CSNSM-Orsay, IRFU-Saclay and LPNHE-Paris, the inaugural JENAS meeting saw 230 junior and senior members of the three communities discuss overlapping interests. Readout electronics, silicon photomultipliers, big-data computing and artificial intelligence were just a handful of the topics discussed. For example, the technological evolution of silicon photomultipliers, which are capable of measuring single-photon light signals and can operate at low voltage and in magnetic fields, will be key both for novel calorimeters and timing detectors at the high-luminosity LHC. They will also be used in the Cherenkov Telescope Array – an observatory of more than 100 telescopes which will be installed at La Palma in the northern hemisphere, and in the Atacama Desert in the southern hemisphere, becoming the world’s most powerful instrument for ground-based gamma-ray astronomy.

As chairs of the three consortia, we issued a call for novel expressions of interest

Organisational synergies related to education, outreach, open science, open software and careers are also readily identified, and a diversity charter was launched by the three consortia, whereby statistics on relevant parameters will be collected at each conference and workshop in the three subfields. This will allow the communities to verify how well we embrace diversity.

As chairs of the three consortia, we issued a call for novel expressions of interest to tackle common challenges in subjects as diverse as computing and the search for dark matter. Members of the high-energy physics and related communities can submit their ideas, in particular those concerning synergies in technology, physics, organisation and applications. APPEC, ECFA and NuPECC will discuss and propose actions in advance of the next JENAS event in 2021.

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