Rupak Mahapatra

Having been trained in accelerator-based collider experiment (CLEO e+e-) and pursuing my current research in non-accelerator based particle experiment (CDMS), I can share the excitement and challenges on both sides of the table. I believe SLAC is in an unique opportunity as it refocuses on the exciting particle physics landscape and can prepare itself to embrace the challenges and provide a truly productive framework for the users to push the US to the forefront of discoveries in particle physics. The paradigm shift has already happened and we find ourselves in a situation unlike any in the past, where neither the collider nor the non-collider based experiments are “onsite”. This means we longer have a common site for meeting of creative/active minds, such as was the case when I was a grad student on CLEO, which is so essential for not only understanding and solving the current problems, but also coming up with ways to find solutions for problems that we are not even aware of now.

My goal would be to create opportunities so that we still continue to “feel” the same closeness of mind and bodies as a user group, so that we interact in the most effective manner and prepare the particle physics community for the challenges of the future and ensure leadership of the US particle physics program. Fortunately, the language that is spoken by collider and non-collider physicists are no longer disjoint, since there has been a large flow of scientists from the collider experiments to the non-collider experiments, which has tremendously boosted the detector technologies and data analysis techniques used in non-collider experiments. This clearly means SLAC has a much larger “reach” than one would normally think, thus presenting the SLAC user group an amazing level of influence in the scientific field as well as with the funding agencies.

I am an assistant professor at the Texas A&M University. I had done my graduate and early postdoctoral work on the CLEO e+e- collider experiment at Cornell, after which I moved on to doing non-accelerator particle physics, searching for Dark Matter with the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (CDMS) experiment. I have played major roles in the experiment in DAQ, Data Analysis and Detector technology development. Right now, my group at Texas A&M University is critically involved in developing the next generation large mass Ge detector technology in very close collaboration with SLAC.