The future of accelerator physics
isn't just for physicists. As in the
past, tomorrow's discoveries in
particle accelerator science may
lead to unexpected applications for
medical diagnosis, healing and the
understanding of human biology.
Breakthroughs in the technology of
nanometer beams, laser
instrumentation and information technology will give high-energy
physicists new accelerators to explore the deepest secrets of the
universe: the ultimate structure of matter and the nature of space
But breakthroughs in accelerator science may do more than advance
the exploration of particles and forces.
No field of science is an island. Physics, astronomy, chemistry,
biology, medicine-- all interact in the continuing human endeavor to
explore and understand our world and ourselves. Research at
high-energy physics laboratories will lead to the next generation of
particle accelerators--and perhaps to new tools for medical science.
National laboratories build particle accelerators for physicists. The
results belong to everyone.
New technologies, such as these
niobium superconducting structures
designed to accelerate electrons to
nearly the speed of light, promise to
take particle accelerator science to an
unprecedented level. The R&D for
particle accelerators takes place at
national high-energy physics
laboratories, including Fermilab, the
Stanford Linear Accelerator Center in California, CERN in
Switzerland and DESY in Germany.
An architect's drawing shows a new
Center for Magnetic Resonance
Research at the University of Illinois at
Chicago. The Center will house not only
the latest 3.0 Tesla whole body scanner
but also the world's first 9.4 Tesla whole
human body scanner. The Center for
Magnetic Resonance Research will provide leadership and
resources for the continued development of magnetic resonance
imaging technology for research and medicine. It will provide unique
post-graduate education opportunities, and, ultimately, improved
medical care for the citizens of Illinois.
The next generation of super-powerful
accelerator light sources will play a key role
in advancing the understanding of how genes
functionˇhow the human genome translates
into the human being. This image of RNA,
the intermediary between DNA and the
structure of proteins in the cell, came from
research at the Advanced Light Source at
DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National
The Department of Energy's Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time.