Prime Minister of Italy visits Fermilab

Prime Minister Matteo Renzi (center)
Prime Minister Matteo Renzi (center)
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi (center) tours the Remote Operations Center West at Fermilab and learns about neutrinos. Photo: Fermilab

(Excerpted from Fermilab news, March 30)

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi visited Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory on March 29 to celebrate nearly four decades of collaboration between Fermilab and Italy. Renzi met with Fermilab Director Nigel Lockyer and Italian researchers to discuss the many contributions Italy — and Italian scientists, engineers and students — have made and continue to make to Fermilab and to particle physics research.

While at Fermilab, Renzi toured an operations center that serves as a hub for Fermilab’s neutrino experiments and a technical area where high-tech, Italian-made particle accelerator components are assembled.

“The world of research is now global and interconnected,” Renzi said, addressing a group of about 50 Italian scientists, engineers and students gathered to welcome him to the lab.

Italian contributions to Fermilab are felt throughout the laboratory’s R&D programs. Carlo Rubbia developed the revolutionary liquid-argon detector technology behind several Fermilab neutrino experiments, including the flagship experiment DUNE, enabling researchers to study neutrino interactions in a new way.

“Fermilab helps CERN bring forward its flagship program, the LHC,” Bertolucci said. “CERN helps Fermilab to bring forward its flagship program, DUNE. And all the funding agencies, like INFN in Italy, they are working on both projects. It’s a nice synergy.”

Italian institutions have strong, ongoing partnerships with DUNE, its supporting Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility and Fermilab’s Short-Baseline Neutrino Program. Fermilab will reuse the detector for Rubbia’s ICARUS neutrino experiment, being upgraded at European laboratory CERN, which ran at the Italian Gran Sasso Laboratory from 2010-14.

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