Remote Operations

LHC@FNAL

The Large Hadron Collider at CERN is a powerful particle physics tool involving researchers from all over the globe. Many physicists spend weeks or months at CERN, but for others, such as those stationed in the United States, finding a way to communicate with members of their experimental collaboration is paramount.

Fortunately for physicists stationed at Fermilab, a US particle physics lab located near Chicago, Illinois, the LHC@FNAL Remote Operations Center allows them to work on their experiments and interact with their CERN colleagues while living half-way around the world.

Located on the ground floor of Fermilab’s Wilson Hall high rise building, scientists can use state-of-the-art telecommunications technology to video-conference with their fellow collaboration members in high definition and view data from the LHC in real time. LHC@FNAL users effectively have “read-only” access for safety and security reasons, but this restriction matters little when scientists can complete remote monitoring shifts of their experiments using the Center. The CMS experiment group at Fermilab makes use of this last feature.

The Center also allows physicists and engineers to gain experience with the LHC’s cutting-edge accelerator technology by completing virtual training programs, and experts are able to provide live tech support to CERN scientists with the operation of the US-built parts of the LHC.