A new record peak luminosity for the LHC

Two weeks of dedicated machine development paid off last weekend when the LHC ran for physics with three nominal intensity (∼1011 protons) bunches in each beam.

This brought a new record peak luminosity of around 8×1029 cm-2 s-1, and allowed the LHC to double the integrated luminosity delivered to the experiments since 30 March from 16 to 32 inverse nanobarns over the weekend.

After a few more fills in this configuration, the number of bunches will be raised to six per beam, which will in turn allow the peak luminosity to break the 1030 cm-2 s-1 barrier for the first time, well on the way to achieving the 2010 objective of 1032 cm-2 s-1. This peak luminosity goal requires 800 nominal bunches per beam squeezed to a beta of 3.5 metres. The plan for 2011 is to run the LHC in this configuration over about 10 months, thus achieving the objective of recording one inverse femtobarn of data in total.

The machine development period also allowed the TOTEM detectors to be set up with 450 GeV beams, an important step on the way to the experiment beginning its run.

Throughout the month of July, the plan is to increase the number of bunches up to a maximum of 24 per beam followed by around four weeks of continuous physics running in this configuration in August.

Latest news (Friday 2 July, 5 pm): 7 bunches in each beam right now - New record peak luminosity! Watch LHC1 and follow http://twitter.com/cern/ for further information



by CERN Bulletin