Facility for the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment

A global neutrino physics community is developing a leading-edge, dual-site experiment for neutrino science and proton decay studies, the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE), hosted at Fermilab in Batavia, IL.

The facility required for this experiment, the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF), is an internationally designed, coordinated and funded program. Once it is completed, it will comprise the world's highest-intensity neutrino beam, at Fermilab, and the infrastructure necessary to support massive, cryogenic far detectors installed deep underground at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF), 800 miles (1,300 km) downstream, in Lead, SD. LBNF is also responsible for the facilities to house the experiment's near detector on the Fermilab site.

LBNF is tightly coordinated with the DUNE collaboration designing the detectors that will carry out its experimental program.

The DUNE Experiment and Collaboration

The Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, conducted with the detectors installed in the LBNF facility, is expected to achieve transformative discoveries, making definitive determinations of neutrino properties, the dynamics of the supernovae that produced the heavy elements necessary for life, and the possibility of proton decay.

The DUNE scientific collaboration is responsible for designing, building and operating the detectors to do the experiment. The LBNF beamline, which will supply the required intense beam of neutrinos to the detectors at the near and far sites, builds on Fermilab's existing world-class accelerator complex, including the Main Injector and the planned Proton Improvement Plan-II (PIP-II).

Sending neutrinos on a 1,300 km (800 mi) journey

Neutrinos created by the LBNF beamline will travel 1,300 km (800 mi) to intercept DUNE's massive, cutting-edge neutrino detector at the Sanford Lab. The neutrino beam’s path will lead straight through the earth's mantle. Neutrinos pass easily through soil and rock — or kilometers of solid lead, for that matter — rarely interacting with the matter. No tunnel is needed for these ghostly particles.

For a fun, accessible, quick education on neutrinos, visit All Things Neutrino.
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How do we know this is safe?

Neutrinos are among the most abundant particles in the universe, a billion times more abundant than the particles that make up stars, planets and people. Each second, a trillion neutrinos from the sun and other celestial objects pass harmlessly and unnoticed through your body — and everything else. Although neutrinos are all around us, they interact so rarely with other matter that they are very difficult to observe, and consequently, they are completely harmless.

An Environmental Assessment conducted for the LBNF/DUNE project is available; it includes results from an investigation of potential impacts to human health and the environment from the construction and operation of the technical and civil facilities, and finds that the project will have no significant environmental or health-related impacts.

Media Highlights

Fermilab, international partners break ground on new beamline for the world’s most advanced neutrino experiment

With a ceremony held today, the U.S. Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory joined with its international partners to break ground on a new beamline that will help scientists learn more about ghostly particles called neutrinos. The beamline is part of the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF), which will house the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE), an international endeavor to build and operate the world's most advanced experiment to study neutrinos.... Read more...

Prep work to start for DUNE-related construction at Fermilab

Site preparation work starts at Fermilab this fall for the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment. Contractors will soon begin site prep where the powerful particle beam will be extracted and sent toward its final destination — gigantic particle detectors in South Dakota. Building the biggest physics experiment on U.S. soil – and one attempting to answer some of the biggest questions in physics - is no easy feat. More than 1,000 collaborators from over 30 countries are working together on the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment, which is hosted by Fermilab and uses facilities in both Illinois and South Dakota. And while work at the far site has been under way for more than a year, this November will see the premiere of site prep activities at Fermilab..... Read more...

LBNF pre-excavation work is in full swing

Excavating about 800,000 tons of rock a mile underground, bringing it to the surface, and then transporting it to its final resting place is a huge job and part of the LBNF/DUNE project. Creating the infrastructure for that job is a huge amount of work by itself and is going on right now... Read more...

Pre-excavation work on LBNF/DUNE begins in South Dakota

An international project to build the largest physics experiment ever constructed in the United States took a major step forward as a new phase of work has begun at the project’s South Dakota site. The U.S. Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory has finalized an agreement with construction firm Kiewit-Alberici Joint Venture (KAJV) to start pre-excavation work for the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF), which will house the enormous particle detectors for the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE). The South Dakota portion of the facility will be built a mile beneath the surface at the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota. Read more...