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Oct 15 – 20, 2017
Harrison Hot Springs
Canada/Pacific timezone

High Electric field development for the SNS nEDM Experiment

Oct 18, 2017, 1:45 PM
Harrison Hot Springs

Harrison Hot Springs

100 Esplanade Avenue, Harrison Hot Springs, BC Canada V0M 1K0
Oral High voltage and electric field control (generation, leakage currents,...) WeAf1


Dr Takeyasu Ito (Los Alamos National Laboratory)


The SNS nEDM collaboration is developing an experiment to search for the neutron’s electric dipole moment (EDM), using ultracold neutrons (UCNs) stored in superfluid liquid helium, to be run at the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. In this experiment, being able to achieve a strong and stable electric field in superfluid liquid helium in the region where UCNs are stored is of critical importance, because in EDM searches in general the sensitivity depends linearly on the strength of the applied electric field. However, the phenomenon of electric breakdown in liquid helium is poorly understood, and as such a major R&D effort is under way. The SNS nEDM collaboration developed an apparatus to study electrical breakdown in liquid helium at temperatures as low as 0.4 K at pressures between the saturated vapor pressure and 1 atm for electrodes 12 cm in diameter with a gap size of a few cm. A series of measurements were performed using this apparatus. The collaboration is currently constructing a larger cryostat that can accommodate a half scale electrode-measurement cell system. In this talk, the current status of the high electric field R&D and the implications of the findings on the SNS EDM experiment will be discussed.

Funding Agency

US Department of Energy, US National Science Foundation


Primary author

Dr Takeyasu Ito (Los Alamos National Laboratory)

Presentation materials