University of Wisconsin-Madison Physical Sciences Lab

Archive for August, 2013

Measuring Tension

Monday, August 26th, 2013

The Long Baseline Neutrino Experiment (LBNE) is a project designed to measure the changes in neutrinos from their source at Fermi National Laboratory to detectors located at the Homestake Mine in Lead, SD. The detectors are thin gauge copper wire bound steel frames, called Anode Plane Assemblies (APAs), submerged in tanks of liquid argon.

PSL has been tasked with building the large APAs. Before the full-size APAs were cleared for construction, PSL built a 40% scale prototype to put through a number of tests. Two of those tests included submerging the panels in tanks of liquid nitrogen to see how well the panels would react under very cold temperatures. After successfully completing those tests, PSL engineer Dan Wahl and technician Jonathan Heise used lasers to check the tension of each copper wire to determine if the wire winding process used to build the prototype would be acceptable.