Detector Research and Development



Fermilab has an intensive program in particle detector research and development. This program revolves around a series of institutional capabilities, typically not available elsewhere. The types of facilities that contribute to detector research include: the Silicon Detector Facility, a large ASIC Engineering group, extensive experience in Cryogenic and Vacuum Engineering, a unique High Energy Test Beam Facility, and a world-class Computing Center.


In each of the 3 frontiers of Particle Physics, the physics is advancing rapidly. It is crucial that the detector technology keep pace. The Fermilab Detector R&D program aims to facilitate the development of new particle detection technologies that meet the challenges for the future of particle physics.

Fermilab's detector research and development is funded by DOE from the budget category labeled ‘KA15’, or ‘generic detector R&D’ (i.e. no official Projects). Although predominantly PPD, it is cross-divisional.

The Detector Advisory Group meets semi-regularly and advises the lab management on Detector R&D budgets and issues. Management proceeds along standard divisional supervision.

Detector Projects

Fermilab routinely collaborates with other laboratories and university groups on a large variety of R&D projects such as:

These collaborative efforts leverage both the technical and infrastructure resources available at Fermilab, and the expertise and technical innovations of the wider community.  Various multi-institution collaborations have assembled and tested their detectors in Fermilab’s detector assembly facilities and labs, making use of the convenient space, and of the technical and safety infrastructure and expertise.

Fermilab’s high energy test beam, the only such beam available in the United States, is a valuable resource to the worldwide detector development community.  Another example is the partnership with LBNL which provides silicon sensor fabrication while Fermilab provides expertise in packaging into integrated detector systems, novel readout electronics, and testing. 

Various visitor programs and a Research Techniques Seminar series facilitate the flow of information to and from Fermilab, and provide the opportunities to start new collaborative efforts.


  • EDIT 2013 - March 2013
  • HEPIC2013: High Energy Physics IC Design Workshop - April 30- May 1, 2013
Research Techniques Seminar
These seminars cover technical topics including detector R&D, construction and calibration methods, test beam results, as well as data analysis methods and simulation.
Fermi Today Articles
Going Deep for Detector R&D - Dec 2012


Erik Ramberg
  • Erik Ramberg
  • General Detector R&D Technical Coordinator
  • Office: 630.840.5731
  • Cell: 630.485.1562
  • email:

Join the Community

Interested parties are invited to join the '' email list. This email list is used to inform parties interested in detector research at Fermilab, and elsewhere. Notices of upcoming meetings, talks, and conferences will be sent out to this list. In addition, periodic summaries of the work being done at Fermilab will be sent.

To subscribe to this list, send an email message to the address, with the following line in the body of the message:
subscribe detectors Firstname Lastname
with your own name substituted where indicated. You should receive a notice back indicating you have joined the list, and a second notice with a brief welcome message.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Erik Ramberg.