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Air Products is set to deliver a bespoke nitrogen liquefaction equipment suite to the Fermi Research Alliance (FRA) to bolster research related to the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, or DUNE. The DUNE research endeavor will be conducted over a mile beneath the ground within the South Dakota Black Hills, situated at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) at the US Department of Energy (DOE) Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, often referred to as Fermilab.

Dr. Samir Serhan, Chief Operating Officer at Air Products, communicated the company’s enthusiasm to furnish its advanced solutions to assist DUNE in its pivotal investigations. DUNE’s extensive caverns will host enormous cryostats filled with liquid argon, each equating to the scale of a five-story edifice. These voluminous argon cryostats will facilitate the identification of neutrinos emanating from a proton accelerator beam produced approximately 800 miles distant in Batavia, Illinois.

Air Products’ nitrogen liquefaction mechanism will perpetually chill and recondense the argon evaporating from the neutrino detection apparatus. David Montanari, a Fermilab Engineer assigned to the project, indicates that every sizable DUNE cryostat will hold 17,500 metric tonnes of ultra-pure liquid argon for the purpose of particle track inspection.

He added, “A nitrogen cooling system is requisite to originally fill the cryostats with liquid argon and maintain the argon in liquid form by recondensing the evaporated substance. For DUNE’s success, it is crucial to preserve impurity concentrations in the argon at less than one part per trillion.”

Considered the largest global physics experiment focusing on neutrinos, DUNE could potentially contribute to comprehending the fundamental properties of matter and the origins of the universe. The endeavor encompasses over 1,000 scientists hailing from over 35 countries.

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