Berkeley Bevalac, Three Others Threatened

Lawrence Berkeley Lab’s venerable Bevalac accelerator, for 35 years a laboratory centerpiece and the tool for four Nobel Prizes, appears to be the big loser in another national lab’s campaign for a new heavy-ion research facility. A Department of Energy panel has suggested that the Bevalac be phased out in the mid-i 990s in favor of Brookhaven National Lab’s proposed Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider if the department’s nuclear physics budget does not increase substantially. The working group of the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee was asked to weigh the consequences of “constant budgets” over the next several years, a strong possibility given the multibillion-dollar cost of the agency’s cleanup efforts at its nuclear weapons facilities. NSAC strongly endorsed RHIC construction, and listed three “painful, but acceptable, sacrifices,” says NSF nuclear physics director Karl Erb. Besides phasing out the Bevalac, the panel recommended building the RHIC in...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?