In Geneva, CERN’s Future Circular Collider (FCC) collaboration has submitted its Conceptual Design Report (CDR) for a 100km long large circular collider of the future. The large circular electron-positron collider would be in the €9bn euro range, including €5bn euros for the civil engineering work for the 100km tunnel.
Over the next two years, the particle physics community will be updating the European Strategy for Particle Physics, outlining the future of the discipline beyond the horizon of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The roadmap for the future should, in particular, lead to crucial choices for research and development in the coming years, ultimately with a view to building the particle accelerator that will succeed the LHC and will be able to significantly expand knowledge of matter and the universe. The possibility of a future circular collider will be examined during the strategy process, together with the other post-LHC collider option at CERN, the CLIC linear collider.
The FCC study started in 2014 and stems directly from the previous update of the European Strategy, approved in May 2013, which recommended that design and feasibility studies be conducted in order for Europe “to be in a position to propose an ambitious post-LHC accelerator project at CERN by the time of the next Strategy update”.
“The FCC conceptual design report is a remarkable accomplishment. It shows the tremendous potential of the FCC to improve our knowledge of fundamental physics and to advance many technologies with a broad impact on society”, said CERN Director-General Fabiola Gianotti. “While presenting new, daunting challenges, the FCC would greatly benefit from CERN’s expertise, accelerator complex and infrastructures, which have been developed over more than half a century.”
Over five years and with the strong support of the European Commission through the Horizon 2020 programme, the FCC collaboration involved more than 1300 contributors from 150 universities, research institutes and industrial partners who actively participated in the design effort and the R&D of new technologies to prepare for the sustainable deployment and efficient operation of a possible future circular collider.
“The FCC’s ultimate goal is to provide a 100-kilometre superconducting proton accelerator ring, with an energy of up to 100 TeV, meaning an order of magnitude more powerful than the LHC”, said CERN Director for Accelerators and Technology, Frédérick Bordry. “The FCC timeline foresees starting with an electron-positron machine, just as LEP preceded the LHC. This would enable a rich programme to benefit the particle physics community throughout the twenty-first century.”
The collider would serve the worldwide physics community for 15 to 20 years. The physics programme could start by 2040 at the end of the High-Luminosity LHC. The cost estimate for a superconducting proton machine that would afterwards use the same tunnel is around €15bn. This machine could start operation in the late 2050s.