The nine far detector consortia have begun to take shape. Conveners are in place for eight of the nine consortia, two each from the U.S. and the UK, and one each from Brazil, Spain, France and CERN. The institutional make-up of the consortia is representative of the broad level of international participation that will be necessary to ensure DUNE’s success.
The consortia will face different challenges. Some will focus on building systems similar to those of ProtoDUNE but at the DUNE scale, and others will need to upgrade from a technology used for ProtoDUNE to potentially a quite different system design, also at the full scale. For example, the SP-APA consortium will need to increase production of the final (or near-final) design from six per year to about 75 per year in order to produce the required 150 APAs in two years. The Joint-DAQ consortium, on the other hand, will need to re-optimize the design implemented for ProtoDUNE to account for differences in the conditions (beam type and surface-versus-depth) and science requirements.
During the August collaboration meeting the far detector consortia held their initial meetings, with the appointment of technical leads as the first order of business. These are the people who will coordinate the planning and execution of the overall construction efforts.
The Far Detector Technical Board — made up of DUNE project leadership and the newly-appointed FD consortia leaders and technical leads — met for first time on August 31 to begin planning the activities that will lead to the production of the Technical Design Reports for each detector subsystem on the time scale of spring 2019. To meet this tight deadline, the board will continue to meet regularly into the foreseeable future.
Important deadlines are looming. By the end of this calendar year, we need to define the scope of each consortium and assemble the aspirational lists of institutional responsibilities with respect to the deliverables within each scope. With these preliminary assignments in place, institutions will be able to approach their funding agencies in a timely manner to request support for the construction activities to which they hope to contribute in 2020 and beyond.
As soon as summer 2018, institutional responsibilities and costing models must begin to come into focus to produce the Technical Proposals that will allow for interim review of collaboration progress towards a workable funding model. These models must then solidify in time for the release of the Technical Design Reports in spring 2019.
There is much work still to do, but we have taken a major step towards building the organization that will move DUNE forward into construction, and now have in place a strong team that will push this effort forward!