Archives of the UA1 Collaboration, Underground Area 1 Collaboration
Archives of UA1 Collaboration, Underground Area 1 Collaboration
From 1978 to 1993
Level of description
Extent of the unit of description
240 boxes; 27 linear meters; 293 items
Name of creator
CERN (Geneva, Switzerland), UA1 Collaboration.
The UA1 project began in 1976; the idea was to detect the communicators of weak interaction (W and Z bosons), which had been postulated but never observed. To achieve this goal, the experiment planned to collide proton beams with antiproton beams in the Super Proton Synchrotron with an energy of 270 GeV. The problem, which Van der Meer solved, was to stock large amounts of antiprotons.
A new type of detector to see the hypothetical bosons. One of the most important and technically advanced items was the large drift chamber, called the central detector. This drift chamber was 6 meters in length and over 2 meters in diameter. The UA1 experiment also had an electromagnetic calorimeter, a hadron calorimeter and a muon detector. The full detector weighed over 2000 tonnes. The results collected by the detector were recorded on magnetic tapes. Carlo Rubbia managed the construction of this large detector.
In summer 1981 the first collision between protons and antiprotons was recorded. The first experiments began in November 1981. At the beginning of 1982 two accidents damaged the UA1 detector, so the experiment was stopped until summer 1982. UA1 and UA2 experiments started again in September 1982 until December 1982, when the accelerators were switched off for two months. During this time data were analysed and physicists were convinced of having discovered the W boson. This was announced in a press conference held on 25 January 1983. The next step was the discovery of Z boson. The experiments on SPS began again on April 1983, and there were soon major results. On 1 June 1983 CERN formally announced the discovery of the Z boson.
The discovery of W and Z bosons ld to a Nobel prize for Carlo Rubbia and Simon Van der Meer: "The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physics for 1984 jointly to Professor Carlo Rubbia, CERN, Geneva, Switzerland and Dr Simon Van der Meer, CERN, Geneva, Switzerland, for their decisive contributions to the large project, which led to the discovery of the field particles W and Z, communicators of weak interaction".
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
Received from Alan Norton the 30th May 1995.
Received from Lutz Naumann the 30th May 1995.
Received from Guy Maurin the 30th May 1995.
Received from Antoine Lévêque in April 2000.
Scope and content
This collection contains reports, correspondence and official documents related to UA1 Collaboration. It gives an overview of a large, international scientific collaboration.
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information
All items have been kept in the order in which they were received. Nothing was destroyed.
No further accruals are expected.
System of arrangement
|Alan Norton's collection||CERN-ARCH-UA1-1||Dates|
|Scanning||01-001 to 079||1983-07-04 to 1990-08-27|
|Technical notes and preprints||02-001 to 022||1978-01-30 to 1993-11-26|
|Meetings||03-001 to 029||1978-02-10 to 1991-08-08|
|Talks, transparencies, thesis, etc||04-001 to 025||1978-00-00 to 1990-09-14|
|Miscellaneous||05-01||1978-04-25 to 1990-00-00|
|Lutz Naumann's collection||CERN-ARCH-UA1-2||Dates|
|Technical files, upgrade||01-001 to 020||1978-00-00 to 1991-05-25|
|Logbooks||02-001 to 028||1981-08-21 to 1990-10-30|
|Guy Maurin's collection||CERN-ARCH-UA1-3||Dates|
|Executive Committee||01-001 to 008||1978-04-25 to 1991-05-13|
|Technical files||02-001 to 017||1979-03-12 to 1993-01-22|
|Antoine Lévêque's collection||CERN-ARCH-UA1-4||Dates|
|Discussion of proposal||01-001||1977-01-04 to 1979-11-13|
|Hardware design||02-001 to 009||1977-06-01 to 1985-06-03|
|Setting up experiment||03-001 to 005||1980-04-08 to 1984-11-21|
|Collider and running||04-001 to 004||1979-09-00 to 1985-01-28|
|Description of hardware||05-001 to 002||1982-04-02 to 1985-05-00|
|Data analysis||06-001 to 019||1981-08-00 to 1985-08-16|
|Physics memos & transparencies||07-001 to 012||1981-04-22 to 1985-07-24|
|Improvement program||08-001 to 004||1982-05-14 to 1984-09-24|
|Collaboration meetings||09-001 to 004||1978-05-01 to 1990-12-07|
|Coordination & Executive Committee||10-001 to 004||1978-11-24 to 1985-09-10|
Conditions governing access
See file level description and the CERN operational circular No 3: rules applicable to archival material and archiving at CERN. In general, records on any subject that are over 30 years old, and all records of a purely scientific nature, may be consulted.
Conditions governing reproduction
Copyright is retained by CERN, no reproduction without permission.
Language / scripts of material
Most of the material is written in English.
Listed to file level in the CERN Archive database.
Related units of description
The UA1 Collaboration contains documents concerning similar experiments, but with a different technology.
For a complete (and quite easy to understand) description of the experiments of UA1 and UA2 Collaborations, see : WATKINS, Peter Maitland: Story of the W and Z, 1986.
The central part of the UA1 detector is exposed in the Microcosm since 1999.
Description of the collection prepared by Maryse Moskofian.
ISAD(G) description by Marc Reymond.
Date(s) of description: Collection: Geneva, May 2001. ISAD(G) description: Geneva, June 2002. Revised 2007