KM3NeT - detection unit

A very busy day, offshore and onshore

13 September 2021 – Still a day packed of activities today!

The status at the moment is that all interlink cables have been layed down on the sea floor and two detection units have been deployed and connected to the junction box. The detection units are still furled on their launcher vehicles; they will be allowed to unfurl tomorrow – since the launcher vehicle has to be recovered from the ship after it reaches the surface, it is better to perform this operation in the daylight.

Pre-unfurling functional tests performed from the onshore control station show that those first two detection units are in good order.

Deployments of the next detection units will continue during the night.

The onshore team in the control station at Portopalo di Capo Passero, Sicily, Italy.









ORCA is operational

8 March 2019 – Last month, the KM3NeT team of CPPM, Marseille together with the ship crews successfully installed an ORCA detection unit. It was the first unit connected to the refurbished main electro-optical cable to shore. After a few weeks of technology tests, the unit is given free for physics runs. ORCA is operational!

Unfortunately, after the deployment of one unit, the winch of the heavy lift line failed and three other units could not be deployed. They will be deployed during the next sea campaign.

In the mean time, KM3NeT researchers have taken up the duty of 24/7 shifts overlooking proper functioning of the detection units at both the ORCA and ARCA site. It is a pleasure to watch good quality data streaming to shore.

Pictures below: Four detection units in their deployment mode on deck of RV Castor (left), the package with the detection unit hanging on the heavy weight lift line just above the water surface (middle) and a plot of the signals that a down-going muon particle leaves in the detection unit: height vs the time of the recorded light signals (right).

ARCA is growing up

IMG_621516 May 2016 – During a five day sea campaign last week, two detection units for ARCA were deployed at the Italian KM3NeT site. On board the Ambrosius Tide, the detection units arrived from the harbour of Malta at the KM3NeT-It  site, 80 km off-shore the South-East of Sicily. After a survey of the area and inspection of the deep-sea infrastructure, the units were deployed at their pre-defined locations. With a speed of about 12 meter per minute, the descent of a unit from the sea surface to touch-down at a depth of 3500 meter took about 4.5 hours. Read more