Publications and Videos


Overview of PRISMA+'s activities and events in 2022

PRISMA+ Image Film

Cluster of Excellence PRISMA:
The Quest for New Physics

We already know quite a bit about the smallest building blocks of matter and of the forces that shape the universe. However, we also know that there is a lot more to discover. Many questions are yet open, such as that of dark matter: what does it consist of, and what is dark energy? Why does the universe contain more matter than antimatter? And what role do the mysterious ghost particles – or neutrinos – play in the early universe?

The Cluster of Excellence PRISMA – Precision Physics, Fundamental Interactions and Structure of Matter at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) explores these and other puzzles. Answering these fundamental questions will tell us about what matter is made of, how it is structured, and how the universe evolved.

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Current students, alumni and professors define the Excellence Track in three words

MESA Video Animation

MESA | A New Particle Accelerator for the JGU

Financed with funds from the Cluster of Excellence PRISMA – Precision Physics, Fundamental Interaction and Structure of Matter, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz is constructing a new electron accelerator.

The video shows the construction and operating principle of MESA, the Mainz Energy recovering Superconducting Accelerator. With an innovative concept, part of the energy needed to accelerate the electron beam is recycled. This principle can be compared with the one of hybrid cars, where the breaking energy is returned to the battery.

MESA will offer unique opportunities for experiments to tackle the pressing questions of particle physics, i.e., precision measurements of physical constants of nature or the search for the so-called dark photon, the discovery of which would provide important insights into the mystery of dark matter.

Test operation of some of the MESA components will start in 2017. The accelerator will be fully operable with the planned completion of the experimental hall of the new Center for Fundamental Physics research building in 2020.

More videos related to MESA

Cooling the superconducting cavities down to low temperatures using nitrogen (typically around 77 K) and liquid helium (down to 2 K) is an important step towards building the MESA particle accelerator.