Fermilab Faces Life Without The SSC

The selection of Texas as the site of the multibillion-dollar superconducting supercollider last month (see story, page 1) has big loser Fermilab worrying about its future. Within hours of the selection, recent Nobel laureate Leon Lederman, director of the Illinois accelerator complex, launched a preemptive strike against an expected decline in morale by assuring the lab’s nearly 400 physicists and engineers that a proposed expansion of the lab’s own Tevatron accelerator would keep the facility productive well into the next century.

But members of the Department of Energy’s High Energy Physics Advisory Panel, who gathered for a routine meeting in Washington a few days later, were far less confident than Lederman about Fermilab’s ability to retain its enviable place atop the U.S. high-energy physics heap. They pointed out that the Illinois facility’s proposed $250 million upgrade would occur in the mid-1990s—a period that coincides...

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