The PANDA Experiment will be one of the key experiments at the Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research (FAIR) which is under construction and currently being built on the area of the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung in Darmstadt, Germany. The central part of FAIR is a synchrotron complex providing intense pulsed ion beams (from p to U). Antiprotons produced by a primary proton beam will then be filled into the High Energy Storage Ring (HESR) which collide with the fixed target inside the PANDA Detector.
The PANDA Collaboration with more than 420 scientist from 18 countries intends to do basic physics research on various topics around the weak and strong forces, exotic states of matter and the structure of hadrons. In order to gather all the necessary information from the antiproton-proton collisions a versatile detector will be build being able to provide precise trajectory reconstruction, energy and momentum measurements and very efficient identification of charged particles
Currently the collaboration with Russian Institutes is suspended. For details see statement from GSI.
CERN’s LHCb experiment has donated its decommissioned outer tracker detector component to PANDA.
PANDA is happy about a gift it has received from LHCb, one of the four big CERN experiments at the Large Hadron Collider. LHCb has sent their decommissioned Outer Tracker (OT) from Geneva to Darmstadt, where it has arrived at GSI (25. August 2023) after a special transport of five days via truck and ship. The LHCb colleagues at CERN prepared the detector in its transport frame with protecting plastic for a journey in three stages, due to the "package" size: Seven meter long, 3.5 meter wide, 5.5 meter high and a weight of 24 tons. The first stage of the journey by truck brought the OT from CERN to the harbour of Colmar where a Rhine ship took over the second stage and delivered the OT to Gernsheim harbour, where a truck did the last stage to GSI.
The donation from LHCb to PANDA was initiated by by our deputy technical coordinator Anastasios "Tassos" Belias and Niels Tuning from LHCb/CERN after discussions about spare detector modules at a conference a few years ago.
Finally the LHCb collaboration decided to donate the whole OT to the PANDA collaboration, which was then formally signed in a contract between GSI and CERN/LHCb last year.
The donation was made possible thanks to the close cooperation in logistics and technical aspects between several colleagues at CERN and GSI/FAIR, in particular Niels Tuning (LHCb, Nikhef/CERN) and Anastasios Belias (PANDA, GSI/FAIR) and their relentless efforts to give the formidable outer tracker a second life. The donation was kindly agreed upon by the LHCb groups who meticulously built and operated the outer tracker, namely,
the National Institute for Subatomic Physics, Nikhef, the Netherlands,
the Physikalisches Institut der Universität Heidelberg, Germany,
the National Centre for Nuclear Research, Warsaw, Poland,
the Henryk Niewodniczanski Institute of Nuclear Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Krakow, Poland,
and the Technische Universität Dortmund, Germany.
The OT consists of 54.000 Straw tubes, each 2.4 m long with a diameter of 5 mm, which are arranged in staggered double layers and mounted to twelve C-shaped mechanical frames. The C-frames are inserted in the big blue transport frame (c.f. pictures).
There are several ideas how individual parts of the OT can be re-used in different experiments and set-ups in the future.
At PANDA the tracker will be able to detect the light hadrons produced by the collisions. Hadron spectroscopy is where the physics goals of LHCb and PANDA overlap, and the two will be able to collect complementary data that can later be analysed and compared. The tracker will also be used by students and young researchers in R&D projects, as well as in outreach activities for schools and the general public.
Once again this year, the outstanding efforts of two groups were recognized by the PANDA Collaboration and awarded the annual prize for their exceptional work for the operation and realization of PANDA at FAIR.
The first award went to Tobias Stockmanns (middle photo on the right) and Anna Alicke (on the right photo) for their development of a realistic and generalized tracking algorithm for the PANDA experiment. Their development of a more generalized algorithm that is agnostic to the point of production is absolutely crucial for the foreseen hyperon physics program of PANDA and an important milestone for the PANDA software.
The second prize went to Lars Schmitt (middle photo on the left) and Anastasios Belias (on the left) for their tireless work to realize the PANDA detector at FAIR. Their continuous persistence and creativity, which went far beyond what could have been expected, is not only an inspiration for the entire collaboration, but also a guarantee for the realization of our ambitious project eventually. Both are unparalleled in their commitment to the technical side of the project and are like a rock in the current storm
The awards were presented by the Spokesperson Ulrich Wiedner (who took the middle photo) on the occasion of a boat tour during the recent Collaboration Meeting In Prague.
Every year, PANDA awards a prize for the best PhD thesis in PANDA of the last year and we’d like to ask again for nominations for this year's prize. The rules are simple as usual:
Who is eligible? And how can nominations be made?
Members of PANDA who have had the oral defense of their PhD thesis during the year preceding the selection are eligible. The thesis may contain work related to other topics/experiments, but the majority of the work in the thesis must be directly connected to PANDA. The thesis advisor can nominate someone who successfully passed the oral defense during the period from June 1, 2022 to May 31, 2023.
A nomination can be made until August 31, 2023 (almost 2 months from now!!) by submitting the following information to the speaker of the collaboration:
1. A nomination letter in which the content of the thesis and the importance of this work for PANDA is described. This should also motivate why that thesis should be considered as the best one of the selection period from PANDA.
2. The thesis must be made available online on the PANDA webpage, and the URL must be included in the nomination. If it is not allowed to upload the thesis to the PANDA website, then a hard copy of the thesis must be submitted.
3. If the thesis is not written in English, then a (couple page) summary must be provided in English.
4. A copy of a certificate showing the grade achieved by the thesis (and a short description of the grade scale). This certificate should indicate the date of the oral exam. If that is not the case, then some other confirmation of when the oral exam was held must be provided (a letter for the thesis advisor will suffice, if a copy of a formal document is delivered before the September meeting.)
The nomination must be made in writing/email. The PANDA Award Committee will propose a PhD Prize Committee as soon as all nominations are in.
Please keep in mind that potential awardees for the PhD Prize need to be present at the GSI Meeting in October for their PhD presentation. Please consider registration and (if necessary) visa application in time for them.
In spring 2023 the PANDA collaboration elected a new spokesperson and deputy - both started their two year term on July 1st.
Following the experiments "Governance Rules" the collaboration members with voting rights voted for Klaus Peters (CV) to become the new spokesperson and Miriam Fritsch (CV) to be the new deputy.
We thank the former team Ulrich Wiedner and Karin Schönning for their work in rough times and wish the new team to have a good hand for the future challenges of PANDA.