KM3NeT - meeting

An inspiring collaboration meeting in Rome

31 October 2022 – What a week last week!

A large fraction of the KM3NeT collaboration met in Rome for a vibrant collaboration meeting, in remote connection with those who could not come in person.

The venue was Centro Ricerche Enrico Fermi, at the historical building where Enrico Fermi and his team made surprising discoveries in the ’30s. The site is also well known for a prestigious physics conference which was hosted there in 1931 and represented a milestone for nuclear research for decades. What a source of inspiration that was! It is in fact after a suggestion of Enrico Fermi that the neutrinos, those elusive particles which are the main subject of research of KM3NeT, were named so. He also formulated the first theory of weak interactions including neutrinos.

During the meeting we reviewed the progress in data analysis and in the construction of the ARCA and ORCA detectors. We also refined the plans for two new funding projects which are about to start in France and Italy – NEUMED and KM3NeT4RR – which will allow for significant extention of the two detectors.

The collaboration is growing: new research teams from Technical University of Prague (team leader: Ivan Stekl),  Comenius University of Bratislava (team leader: Fedor Simkovic) and Université Mohammed VI Polytechnique of Ben Guerir in Morocco (team leader: Ahmed Ratnani) were welcomed; and Yuri Y. Kovalev (now at MPIfR, Bonn) applied for joining as an associated member. Almost 30 new colleagues from the various international KM3NeT institutes and our new quality team, comprising quality manager Céline Pariès and quality officer Cédric Vérhilac, made their debut in a collaboration meeting.

Our management team was elected for a second two-year mandate.

With many thanks to our colleagues of La Sapienza University and INFN Rome for an excellent organisation!


A collaboration in corona times

18 February 2021 – Like everyone else the KM3NeT Collaboration has to follow the restrictive measures against the COVID-19 pandemic. So, once more, the last two weeks we held our Collaboration meeting on-line. At this virtual meeting we discussed the many details of building the telescopes, analysing the data and developing the simulation programs.  We are very encouraged by the large progress with constructing the many detector components and the installation of the ARCA and ORCA telescope infrastructures. We are excited by the many analyses of data from the installed detector units on which we will  report at the upcoming conferences. Nevertheless, we  tremendously miss our colleagues.  In particular, for the young scientists in our Collaboration these are difficult times, but they are amazing in their efforts for the Collaboration.

During the Collaboration meeting we virtually said goodbye and thank you to Marco Anghinolfi, who will be retiring soon after many years of service to the Collaboration.  We hope you enjoy your retirement. Arrivederci, but no goodbye!

We virtually raised a glass to thank Mauro Taiuti for his four years of leadership as Spokesperson of KM3NeT. Fortunately, he has promised to continue his scientific career in the Collaboration!

We are looking forward to the new leadership of Paschal Coyle and his team. All the best for executing the tremendous task ahead of building the telescopes and executing the scientific program – also in corona times. We will do our best to support you!

We virtually applauded our PhD students who have recently completed their theses and wished our postdocs leaving the Collaboration all the best for their careers!

We virtually welcomed new students and postdocs who will work on the nitty gritty of data analysis and detector calibration. We hope to meet you face-to-face very soon!

Last but not least, we  virtually welcomed LPC Caen, France as a new group in the collaboration who  will participate in both the construction work and the scientific program. Super!

On the bright side of virtual meetings our conference committee reported a more diverse participation of our Collaboration in the international conferences. More people took part and the representation among speakers was better balanced in seniority and gender.

Building and operating a telescope is an attractive, tremendous, collaborative effort relying on  a lot of human interaction, hard to recreate in a virtual environment – but we did our best! We were still able to generate our customary  Collaboration group picture as you can see below: a collaboration in corona times.