Jun 25

Making Things Happen



Detector Rows at GRAND

The large ray detectors at Project GRAND are designed to collect data 24/7 all on their own.  So what do students and teachers working on GRAND do on a daily basis?  Well, one of their primary jobs on top of analyzing data collected, is to keep these detectors functioning a full 24/7.

The detectors must be outside in a wide field subject to an uncontrolled environment meaning any kind of weather that hits can affect them.  They need to be kept in a temperature controlled area with a low humidity which, as anyone who lives here would say, is hard to find in the South Bend summer so they are all placed in individual huts which attempt to control the environment a bit.  To help them in the summer, dehumidifiers are placed in every detector and run 24/7.  Dehumidifiers need to be fixed quite often, however, so that becomes a large portion of the fixing that goes on.  Other things that may happen less often would be things like the actual detector malfunctioning or a powerful storm hitting leading to repairs being needed on the huts surrounding the detector.  Students and teachers receive signals to a computer when one or more of the huts is not functioning properly so repairs can be made.

More information on Project GRAND including a live view of the status of each individual detector can be found on the GRAND website.  An in depth description of the experiments happening at GRAND can be found here.