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the SSC. Indeed, a few international collaborations are in the process of being established with a goal of proposing detectors for the SSC.
Understanding the results of high energy proton collisions at the SSC requires the development of a new generation of particle detectors capable of handling the large number of collisions expected. To this end, the SSC Laboratory has been supporting research and development on detector technology at a number of institutions throughout the United States. Scientists from Europe and Japan have been participating as well.
Two committees of internationally recognized particle physicists have been advising me about the appropriate scope of the initial experimental program for the SSC, that is, the complement of detectors and experiments that should be in place and ready to operate when the collider begins its operations in 1998. We have asked scientists throughout the world to prepare what we have called "Expressions of Interest" describing initial experiments and detectors by May of this year. The Laboratory's Program Advisory Committee will evaluate the submissions and make judgments about which ideas and approaches should be pursued.
As I have often stated, the SSC has two major goals: to create the world's premier high energy physics laboratory and to create a national educational resource. I have told you what we are doing to realize the first goal; let me now turn to the second.
We have just announced the award of the first SSC National Fellowships to twenty outstanding young scientists to allow them to devote a year of research to SSC-related science. Funds for the fellowships are provided by the Texas National Research Laboratory Commission, but the awards are truly national in scope. The twenty junior faculty members and postdoctoral research associates will carry out their research activities at their home institutions. The goal of the program is to encourage the best young physicists to work on SSC science as well as to strengthen high energy and accelerator physics programs at institutions throughout the country.
Scientists at the SSC Laboratory are already teaching a graduate-level course in accelerator physics, and we fully expect others to begin similar activities as time permits.
Planning is underway at the Lab for a summer intern program for interested college (and perhaps high school) students. The aim here would be to demonstrate to the students what working at a real scientific laboratory is like.
We have held a meeting of a number of science teachers at the elementary and high school levels to discuss their views about how the SSC can serve as a focal point for improving science education in our schools. For some time now many have bemoaned the sorry state of the American educational system, particularly in the sciences; we hope to do something about the problem by instituting programs for teachers and students. We want the teachers involved with us in the planning and implementing of the programs.
Finally, hardly a day goes by when at least one of the SSC staff is not out at a school or a public meeting, discussing the SSC with interested members of the public. Here we note an interesting phenomenon, people are as interested in hearing about the SSC and its programe as our staff is in talking about it.
Having satisfied most of our intended goals for the first year of operation, we now turn to a new ses ef objectives to which we will devote our efforts in the coming months.
As I mentioned earlier, a key milestone in our magnet program is the accelerator system string test scheduled før 1992. Here we intend to connect 5 dipole magnets and one quadrupele magnet and the associated technical systems and examine their performance on the surface and below ground in a tunnel section. The goals are to demonstrate magnet and system performance under realistic conditions, to gain experience in magnet and systems installation, and to improve geotechnical information in a geologically complex section of the ring.
Campus planning, design, and construction will get underway. The staff of the SSC Laboratory has been occupying temporary space in South Dallas for the last year. The efficiency of our work, as well as the spirit and morale of the staff and of the citizens of Ellis County cannot help but improve if we can rapidly locate the focus of our activities at the permanent site of the Laboratory. At a minimum, we will begin site preparation for the accelerator system string test as soon as we can, presumably immediately following the Record of Decision on the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement currently under preparation by the Department of Energy.
Identification of the initial experimental program will begin in earnest in the coming months with the receipt and evaluation of the Expressions of Interest.
The SSC Laboratory is off to an exciting and productive start. We must now maintain the momentum of the first year by vigorously pursuing our magnet development program, carrying out design and construction activities at the site, planning the initial experimental program, and building on the foundation of educational programs we have begun to implement
Senator FORD. Thank you very much, Doctor. Dr. Decker, let me ask you two or three questions and then turn it over to Senator Johnston. Dr. Decker, how do you assess the probability that more new information may come along to cause another cost increase?
Dr. DECKER. In my view we probably have seen the major technical surprises that could hit us. I personally do not see a very high probability of new information coming along that would cause us to change the design significantly from the direction that we are on right now.
Before we started this program, we did do a fairly extensive analysis of new technologies coming along to see whether or not there were any new things that-new accelerating techniques and so forth that might cause us to change the design, and the result of all of those studies were that there was nothing new on the horizon that could affect the design of this particular machine.
We did get a surprise with regard to new information that came from operation of Tevatron and from the building of the superconducting magnets for the HERA machine which you heard about earlier. But I do not expect any additional surprises.
Senator FORD. Well, it is a fact that we cannot say with certainty right now the cost of the SSC, is that not correct? We do not really know what it is going to cost.
Dr. DECKER. Right.
Dr. DECKER. Yes, sir. Our intent is to have a hard cost estimate for you by August.
Senator FORD. You are usually pretty good about giving it to us when we are out of session, you know. Seems to work that way all the time. (Laughter.]
Can you see about getting it to us the last of July or the 1st of September?
Dr. DECKER. We will do our best.
Senator FORD. All right. Who is responsible for the cost of the project? In other words, who should be fired if the costs get out of control? Dr. Schwitters?
Dr. DECKER. I am not sure that I want to answer the question this way, but I guess ultimately the Secretary of Energy is responsible for the cost of this project. But when you talk about firing, I am a little anxious, a little reluctant to answer that way.
Certainly the primary responsibility for carrying out this project rests with the SSC laboratory and Universities Research Association. We have responsibility in my office for monitoring the progress in the project, monitoring its costs, and we plan to carry out that responsibility in a very conscientious way:
Senator FORD. Do you believe that we can obtain significant foreign contributions while reserving the technology and manufacturing benefits for the U.S. industry?
Dr. DECKER. Yes, I believe we can, although there are some difficulties for sure. If we seek substantial amounts of foreign contributions, which we are, obviously our first choice would be to get those contributions in the form of unrestricted cash grants. Now, that is difficult to obtain, I suspect.
The most likely way that we feel that foreign countries will wish to contribute is through in-kind contributions. And if you look at where you may be able to obtain significant amounts of money through in-kind contributions, you do get into areas like the superconducting magnets because that is where there is a large chunk of project cost. But we are very concerned about ensuring that the benefits of building things like the superconducting magnets and other high tech components are gained by U.S. industry.
Senator FORD. Well, let me ask you this, then. You heard Dr. Bromley say or give what he understood to be the administration's position on Congressman Roe's H.R. 4380. That is the way you judge that bill also?
Dr. DECKER. Yes, sir. Senator FORD. Dr. Schwitters, in your testimony-I am not sure which page it is on. I believe it is page 4–I have been looking at it a little bit, but it is understandable concerns have been raised about whether the new cost estimate gives pause for further increases in the future, and you say a flat does not. You know, how can you rule out any new information such as your experience with magnets and so forth and say there will be no more than that?
Dr. SCHWITTERS. These tough technical issues we have dealt with that have led to the substantial increase, the aperture and the energy of the injector, were known by accelerator designers to be the key points, even in the time of the central design group work. One has to make in the end technical judgments in these areas.
Now, you are right. There is new information that came available, new uses of supercomputers and so forth. We believe that that information is sufficient to describe the technical needs of the facility, and we believe there is enough experience in developing the development plan to produce these magnets that we can arrive at a figure-again, working with the department this spring and summer—that we will commit to.
Now, let me say a little bit about this.
Now, let me say a little bit about this-my feeling of responsibility in this area. You asked who would get fired. We feel at the laboratory a very deep responsibility to the American people because of the trust in us to do this science, to our colleagues throughout science because this is a very major issue, and to our colleagues within high energy physics. Our goal is to do research with this wonderful instrument that you and the American people will make available to us.
This sense of responsibility has guided high energy physics very well in the past. We have had an excellent record of cost control in our major laboratories and an excellent record of performance in achieving our scientific goals. This is very deeply embedded in our-again, the sense of responsibility and trust between the community and the government, and I just want to put myself on record as signing on to that.
Senator FORD. Well, I understand your fervor here and your commitment, and you are to be commended for that. Dr. Bromley said earlier one of the problems you have in making estimates were conservative in making those estimates, and the very next sentence on page 4, the cost estimate we have presented to the Department