August 6, 2004  


GLAST Management Visits Italy

By Lowell Klaisner

SLAC Director Jonathan Dorfan and GLAST/LAT Project Manager Lowell Klaisner visited INFN in Pisa, Italy in July. They met with the team working on the GLAST Silicon Tracker in the morning and toured their facilities. Dorfan met with the BABAR collaborators in the afternoon and then visited the facility where INFN is building the silicon vertex detector for CMS at CERN. They also met with Rino Castaldi, Director of INFN-PISA, and expressed their appreciation for this support and for the importance of the collaboration between INFN-Pisa and SLAC. INFN is an important collaborator on the GLAST project and to preparations for doing science with the instrument.  The Tracker is a modular design of 16 individual towers, each with 19 layers of silicon.  The design was a collaboration of INFN, UCSC and SLAC, and is being fabricated and tested at many INFN institutions and aerospace companies in Italy.  The Italian space agency (ASI) and INFN are funding this work similar to NASA and DOE funding the GLAST/LAT work in the U.S.  

Collaborating on the project (left to right) Ronaldo Bellazzini (GLAST/INFN), Tracker Project Manager in Italy, Jonathan Dorfan (DO) and graduate student Nicola Omodei (INFN-Pisa) discuss prospects for GLAST science. (Photo by Diana Rogers)

The final assembly is being executed in a large, well-equipped clean room at INFN-Pisa.  Ronaldo Bellazzini (BABAR/INFN) is managing GLAST activities in Italy.  INFN recently completed testing of the over 11,000 silicon tiles, and will deliver the first flight tower to SLAC by this September. 

Dorfan commented on the number and quality of people working on GLAST at INFN.  Many young people have joined the effort.  Recently, the engineering staff was expanded by drawing people from the University of Pisa School of Aerospace Engineering.  In addition to their contribution to the Tracker, the INFN group has contributed to the GLAST Science Analysis Software and to the design of the first data challenge.

INFN has developed strong expertise in the design and fabrication of silicon detectors.  They collaborated on the BABAR silicon vertex detector and have now extrapolated that experience to CMS and GLAST.  With GLAST, INFN has joined SLACís new initiatives in astrophysics.


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Last update Wednesday August 04, 2004 by Emily Ball