Proton Accelerator-Based Physics

The journey to the Energy Frontier begins with the proton accelerator. Capable of producing the highest-energy particle beams ever made, proton accelerators allow physicists to study fundamental properties of matter and the forces that govern its interactions. At the same time, proton accelerators can recreate the conditions of the early Universe, producing particles that were abundant a trillionth of a second after the Big Bang. By colliding proton beams into targets, many other particles, such as antiprotons, mesons, muons, and neutrinos, can also be produced for multiple types of experiments that require beams of these particles

At nearly two trillion electron volts (TeV), the Tevatron at Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois, has been the world's largest operating proton accelerator for more than 15 years. The Tevatron collides protons and antiprotons in an underground ring four miles in circumference. Millions of these proton-antiproton collisions occur within the Cryogenic Detector Facility (CDF) and DZero detectors every second, where physicists record them for later, off-line analysis. Many discoveries have been made at the Tevatron, among them the discovery of the last of the six quarks predicted by current theory in 1995, the so-called and made first observation and measurements of Bs oscillations.