Eha (Glenbard East), James (Oak Park River Forest)
Mentor: Mandy Rominsky
The Fermilab Test Beam Facility operates two Cerenkov radiation detectors for the purpose of particle identification. Cerenkov radiation is the emission of photons produced when a charged particle travels through a medium faster than the speed of light in that medium, much like a sonic boom. The Cerenkov detectors are monitored by a slow controls system which regulates the temperature, pressure, and voltage within the detectors. The slow controls system consists of the iFIX console and the 4-mation Configuration Manager. The former is an interface which allows an individual to monitor the state of the MTest detectors and modify values as seen fit. However, iFIX also monitors Pixel Box and E907 detectors which the Test Beam Facility no longer uses, and it costs a considerable sum of money each year to maintain. 4-mation includes much of the code which converts sensor readings into a formatted display which an operator can understand. However, it is extremely cluttered and includes code which is no longer functionally useful as it pertains to the E907 detectors and Pixel Box. The goal of the Test Beam Facility during the summer was to find a system which could replace iFIX and 4-mation and which had the expandability to eventually support all systems at the Test Beam Facility.
To accomplish this task, it was necessary to identify existing modules, wires, and connections which were crucial to the continued operation of the MTest detectors and to identify those which were not and could be safely unplugged and discarded. After deciding what would be kept in the transition to a new system, it was necessary to decide what hardware and software would replace the existing APACS system and iFIX. In comparing options and recognizing the needs of the Test Beam Facility for an expandable system which combined both HMI and PLC, it was determined that Maple Systems offered the best choice of hardware and software. While the new Maple hardware has, as of this point, not been installed, significant progress has been made in choosing a new system, in reducing clutter, and in documentation which until this point had been scarce.