This was a permission visit organised by the Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC) - Over the 22nd/23rd/24th November three high-profile scientific sites in the UK were opened up and photographers were allowed behind-the-scenes access to some of the facilities. The three sites chosen were the Royal Observatory in Edinburgh, Daresbury Laboratory in Cheshire and the Rutherford Appleton Laboratories in Oxfordshire on the 22nd/23rd/24th respectively.
It was pot luck what the 12-ish groups ended up seeing on the day, each group of 5 or so got to see two areas of the vast R.A.L. site and I was in one of the lucky groups who got to see the ISIS Linear Particle Accelerator.
From the pamphlets:
ISIS is a pulsed neutron and muon source - a pioneering research centre in the physical and life sciences, ISIS has an impact in fields such as energy, biotechnology, materials development and IT. ISIS is helping aerospace companies assure the quality of engineering components, and medical researchers develop a glass that could replace bone transplants.
ISIS is one of the world's best sources of neutrons and muons, it uses beams of these particles to reveal the relationship between the invisible world of atoms and molecules and the world of everyday life.
Exterior...it's hard to get a scale of the vast accelerator building. But it's similar in design to the Airhouse at Pyestock just much bigger. The actual Synchrotron which circulates the particles before firing them towards the target is buried in a man-made hill to keep radiation at bay.
Model of the place, the older accelerator (bottom) is the one we did, the Synchrotron is on the left and the much newer target building is the upper one.
The first thing we saw when going through the entrance....yes this place is very much live!
Cheers for looking, I know it's not the usual thing (but I do remember the CERN thread!)