The Canadian neutrino observatory SNOLAB celebrated its grand opening – and the completion of its construction – on 17 May this year. SNOLAB – shielded, underground, by two kilometres of rock – is now the world’s deepest and cleanest neutrino laboratory, enabling experiments to be conducted with the least interference from environmental and solar radioactivity.
“As SNOLAB marks its formal opening, our science workshop has given us the chance to reflect on the vibrant international science programme that we host, with world leading science results already being delivered by projects at SNOLAB, and great promise from the future projects being developed,” says Nigel Smith, Director of SNOLAB.
“SNOLAB provides a tremendous opportunity for Sudbury and for Canada to lead the world in the rapidly evolving field of astroparticle physics.”
“The science of SNOLAB addresses fundamental questions about the universe we live in – what is the matter which fills the universe but which has so far evaded detection? What are the properties of neutrinos which are the most abundant particles in the universe? Can we exploit the neutrinos to learn more about energy production in the Sun, the make-up of the Earth, or distant astrophysical events such as Supernovae? Can we understand why the universe is made of matter?” said David Sinclair, Director of Facility Development for SNOLAB.
“These questions go to the very roots of our understanding of physics. Finding answers will be challenging but the facilities we open today provide the infrastructure in which we can carry out the search.”
SNOLAB is also the focus of interest from other sciences beyond physics, with the underground laboratories coveted by such fields as geophysics, for long-term studies in the deep rocks; and biology, for analyses of life deep underground.
For more information, please visit the SNOLAB website.