Dr. Rhodri Jones
Head of Beams Department, CERN, CH
Present and future CERN projects and their associated engineering challenges
In building the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), CERN had to overcome numerous technological challenges, breaking new ground in superconductivity, high-speed electronics, cryogenics, vacuum technology, material science and many other disciplines. This is continuing for the high luminosity upgrade of the LHC foreseen to take place in 2026-2028, aiming to increase the total amount of physics data collected by a factor of 10 compared to what is achievable with the current LHC. At the same time the ground is being prepared for a next generation of particle physics accelerators, with research and development ongoing for a 50km linear collider, a 100km circular collider, a muon collider and novel, compact plasma accelerators. All of these imply a leap forward in terms of conception and currently achievable technology, which will be the subject of this presentation.
Dr. Rhodri Jones is Head of the Beams Department at CERN, responsible for the operation of the CERN accelerator complex, the conception and design of future accelerators, accelerator control systems, and geodetic metrology and robotics for accelerator environments.
He obtained his PhD in atomic and laser physics at the University of Wales, Swansea, UK before moving to CERN in 1996 to work on developing new diagnostic systems for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). As well as investigating novel measurement techniques for particle beam characterisation he was responsible for delivering and commissioning the beam position system for the LHC, a large, distributed measurement system essential for maintaining a good control of the LHC’s accelerated particle beams. Between 2009-2020 he headed the Beam Instrumentation Group at CERN and was active in driving forward collaboration in the domain of accelerator technology with European institutes and universities, through direct engagement and via European Union programmes. He became the Beams Department head in 2021.
Rhodri has a longstanding association with the CERN Accelerator School, regularly lecturing and animating practical courses, helping to train the next generation of accelerator physicists and engineers.
Dr. Begoña Vila
US Systems Engineer, NASA GSFC/KBR
The James Webb Space Telescope: On Orbit Commissioning to Ensure Readiness for Science Operations
The James Webb Space Telescope is the largest, most complex telescope being launched into space to date. It includes segmented folded mirrors and a folded sunshield deploying on orbit, and instruments with state of the art infrared detectors and different science capabilities operating below 45K (-378 F). A rigorous test campaign including ambient and cryogenic tests to verify the health, performance and operations readiness in the conditions it will see on orbit was completed prior to the launch.
A detailed commissioning plan starting a few days before launch and running for 6 months afterwards was developed and simulated in multiple rehearsals – it includes the first month for deployments, three months for the alignment of the mirrors, cooldown activities and two months for the calibration of all the instruments and their various observing modes. At the time of this conference JWST will be 5 months into its commissioning and almost ready for the first fully calibrated science observations of this incredible telescope.
A summary of the ground testing and commissioning planning including challenges and contingencies preparation as well as the execution up to the current time will be presented.
Dr. Begoña Vila is the lead Systems Engineer at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/SGT for two of the instruments on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), one of them the Fine Guidance Sensor responsible for the pointing and stability of the Observatory. She is also the deputy lead for the operations of all the Webb instruments after launch.
She obtained her PhD in Astrophysics at Jodrell Bank, Manchester University, UK after her undergraduate degree in Spain. Her research included rotation curves of galaxies, nuclear galactic activity and stellar abundances observing both in optical and in radio wavelengths. She has been involved with JWST since 2006 starting in Canada under the Canadian Space Agency and moving to NASA after the flight instruments were delivered in 2012. She was the overall test lead for the final cryogenic test at Goddard for all the JWST instruments and was heavily involved in the testing completed at the Johnson Space Center cryogenic chamber that included the JWST instruments and mirrors. She is currently involved in the test activities at Observatory level at NGSS (Northrop Grumman Space Systems), and the detailed plans for commissioning and operating the instruments following the launch in 2021.
She has received various achievement awards including the NASA Exceptional Public Achievement Medal in 2016, the Premio Wonenburger by the Xunta de Galicia (Spain) in 2017, a Gallego del Año award (Spain) in 2019 and Top10 Spanish Women Leaders abroad by Mujeres&Cia in 2021.
Apart from her work, Dr. Begoña Vila enjoys outreach activities communicating with the general public on JWST, STEAM, science or other, both in English and in Spanish.
We can hear Dr Vila talking about the James Webb Space Telescope mission in Spanish here:
Dr. Thomas Sesselmann
DR. JOHANNES HEIDENHAIN GmbH, DE
Geneva´s Special Contribution to Precision Manufacturing and Metrology in Europe: A Historical Perspective
Interchangeability of parts with utmost dimensional accuracy, no matter where they were manufactured, has been the most important condition of industrial mass production – first of weapons and later of high-quality consumer goods. Europe´s developing industries of the 1860s had been suffering from the inadequacy of the various existing length standards of the time. They laid all their hope in the advances brought forward by the International Meter Convention of 1875 which agreed on a new Meter Standard to be made of a platinum alloy. It was, however, so difficult to manufacture that it took until 1887 to produce the 30 sets of prototypes for each participating country of the Meter Convention.
Industry could not wait that long. Therefore, it was a breakthrough for the manufacturing community that a Geneva enterprise, the Société Genevoise d´Instruments de Physique (SIP), managed to build the replicas of the length standard earlier than the standard itself was completed, and even in far higher numbers and from a far more sophisticated material, INVAR. Only in this way was it possible to narrow manufacturing tolerances down to a range enabling mass production of goods using automated processes.
SIP continued to dominate the world of European Precision Manufacturing for the decades to come. In 1928, SIP was the pioneer to mount length standards for position feedback as integral parts into machine tools. Hence, SIP jig boring machines have laid the foundation for the closed-loop machine tools of the highest accuracy which can be achieved in our days. Indeed, it is the Geneva of the late 19th and early 20th centuries which brought forth the high-degree of mechanical accuracy on which our modern-day products in the fields of mechanics, optics, electronics and many of the bioscience products of the future depend. As EUSPEN is meeting in Geneva this year to visit CERN, it might well be worthwhile to remind Europe´s modern-day precision manufacturing community of Europe of its local roots.
Thomas Sesselmann (Dr. rer. nat., Dipl.-Phys.) is Chairman of the Supervisory Board of DR. JOHANNES HEIDENHAIN GmbH in Traunreut, Germany. He moved into this position in 2019, after 31 years of active duty for HEIDENHAIN, 24 years thereof as a Managing Director. Since 1996, he had been involved in the founding process of EUSPEN and became one of the founding members in 1999. Since 2000, he has been a Member of the Advisory Board of PTB, the German Metrology Institute.
Prof. Darwin Caldwell
Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), IT
Robotics, AI and assistive technologies for precision medicine
Darwin G. Caldwell, FREng, is Deputy Director of the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), where he was also the founding Director of the Department of Advanced Robotics. The humanoid and quadrupedal robots: cCub, COMAN, WalkMan, HyQ, HyQ2Max, HyQ-Real and Centauro were all developed in his Department. Prior to this he had worked on the development of the iCub. Caldwell is an Honorary Professor at the University of Manchester, the University of Sheffield, the University of Bangor, Kings College University of London, all in the U.K., and Tianjin University, and Shenzhen Academy of Aerospace Technology in China. His current research interests include humanoid and quadrupedal robotics, innovative actuators, force augmentation exoskeletons, dexterous manipulators, Telepresence and haptics, and medical, surgical and rehabilitation robotics. He is the author or co-author of over 500 academic papers, 20+ patents, and has received awards and nominations from over 40 international journals and conference. Prof. Caldwell has been a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (UK National Academy) since 2015.