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How to Design a Particle Accelerator - with Suzie Sheehy


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How do you go about designing a particle accelerator? Suzie Sheehy discusses how they work, what form they take, and what champagne means to an accelerator physicist.
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The Large Hadron Collider at CERN has captured the imagination of the public. But particle accelerators take many shapes, and there are tens of thousands of other accelerators in use every day around the world.

Dr Suzie Sheehy designs particle accelerators. In this animation she leads us through the world of accelerators. They all share the same basic ingredients of an accelerator: particles, energy, control, collision and detection, and typically fall into three categories: linear, cyclotron and synchrotron.

The applications of accelerators range from individual medical care to answering the biggest questions we have about the universe. Each accelerator is the culmination of hundreds of people’s efforts, though the designs themselves often start with a single person’s idea.
Watch Suzie’s lecture to learn more about her research:

This film was supported by the Science and Technology Facilities Council.

Direction, illustration and animation: Andrew Khosravani
Illustration, animation: Clara Cebrian:

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