The ILC community

Image: DESY


Who are the people who want to build the International Linear Collider? They are accelerator and particle physicists, engineers, theorists, technicians, students, software experts, even a few communicators, administrators and economists from all corners of the world. They are united by one goal: trying to answers physics' big questions by building the next-generation particle accelerator ILC to accompany the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). They work on the design and the technologies of the ILC in laboratories, universities, research institutes and organisations in around twenty countries in America, Asia and Europe. In total, some 2000 people are involved in planning the future of physics. Most ILC collaborators are also involved in other scientific projects like the European X-Ray Free-electron Laser (XFEL) in Germany, the LHC in Switzerland, the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) in the USA or other national and international projects. Also, collaborative R&D with related projects such as Energy Recovery Linac Project (ERL), or High-Intensity Compact X-ray Source Project in Japan are ongoing.

Physics democracy

Typical for particle physics projects, the ILC community is self-organised and there is no official management or hierarchy that dictates the work that is to be done. However, to make sure that all efforts are streamlined, a small management team called the Executive Committee coordinates the R&D work for the ILC accelerator, reporting to the International Linear Collider Steering Committee (ILCSC). The experimental programme for physics and detector is developed through the Research Directorate who also reports to ILCSC.

Machine and detectors

The ILC community consists of two large groups. One group designs and develops the accelerator, or "machine", and all systems needed to run the collider properly to meet the challenging operational goals. The other works on the detectors, enormous facilities full of unprecedented technology that will record and analyse the particle collisions and ultimately help scientists answer their big questions. The "machine" part is called the Global Design Effort or GDE; the detector part is called "physics and detector group". Both groups are divided up into smaller, specialised subgroups, and the whole community meets regularly to exchange news, ideas and review progress on their common project ILC, working together across time zones, borders, and languages. Several hundred students are also already contributing to the ILC. The ILC provides a beacon for future worldwide collaborations in science, technology, and beyond. It will take international collaboration in science and technology to new levels and can be a model for the emerging science projects of our new century.

What are they working on now

Since the decision to use superconducting technology for accelerating particles in mid-2004 and the subsequent foundation of the Global Design Effort in early 2005, the ILC has made remarkable progress. The publication of the RDR in 2007 completed this initial phase and marks the beginning of a new era, at the end of which, around 2012, the Technical Design Report will be the essential element to propose the collider to governments and funding agencies and to find a suitable site somewhere in the world. In parallel, a detailed baseline design for detectors will be delivered with the TDR at the end of 2012.

R&D for ILC detector has been organised by the Worldwide Study on Physics and Detectors for Linear Colliders (WWS) more than ten years prior to the foundation of the GDE. In 2007, the Research Directorate was created to provide guidance for the global detector R&D activities and coordination of the procedures for developing engineering designs for two complementary detectors for the ILC, and the concept for the International Linear Detector (ILD) and the Silicon Detector (SiD) were selected. R&D work to design and test new detector technologies is in full swing.

More about the status of the project

The Global Design Effort Executive Committee

The function of the Executive Committee coordinates the activities of the Global Design Effort. Its nine members meet once a week per teleconference and face-to-face every few months. It is comprised of ILC Director Barry Barish, the three regional directors - Michael Harrison (Americas), Kaoru Yokoya (Asia), and Brian Foster (Europe) , the three project managers - Marc Ross (Fermilab), Akira Yamamoto (KEK), and Nick Walker (DESY) - and experts who work on integration (Ewan Paterson, SLAC) and costing issues (Peter Garbincius, Fermilab). More experts may be added to the committee in the coming years.

This simple Global Design Effort management structure helps to guide the global R&D and design effort. The EC centralises much of the policy decision making and provides guidance for the overall programme.

More about the Global Design Effort's charge and organisation

The Research Directorate Executive Board

The research directorate is responsible for the development of the experimental programme of the ILC for physics and detectors. Its executive board is comprised of ILC Research Director Sakue Yamada and three regional contacts - Jim Brau (Americas), Hitoshi Yamamoto (Asia) and Juan Fuster (Europe).

More about the Research Directorate' charge and organisation

Linear Collider Collaboration

In 2013, the International Linear Collider and the Compact Linear Collider (CLIC) merge to form one Linear Collider Collaboration, headed by former LHC project leader Lyn Evans.

Read also

Directorate and committees All about ILC management and committees
Funding Learn about how the ILC is funded
International collaborations and projects Project teams around the world
Laboratories, institutes and universities Institutions involved in the ILC

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