Director of Underground Lab at Homestake to speak at USD

VERMILLION, S.D. -- How do you unlock the deepest secrets of the universe? Jose Alonso, Ph.D., director of the Sanford Underground Laboratory at Homestake, will explain that and the mission of the Sanford Underground Laboratory at Homestake in Lead, S.D. when he visits Farber Hall at The University of South Dakota on Thursday, Nov. 20 at 7 p.m.

In his free presentation entitled, "Neutrinos and Dark Matter in the Black Hills," part of Sanford Underground Lab’s popular "Deep Science for Everyone" lecture series, Alonso will report on current progress at Homestake and how the worldwide demand for deep science labs is creating opportunities across South Dakota. The South Dakota Science and Technology Authority is re-opening Homestake for science to a depth of 4,850 feet. The National Science Foundation is also considering the possibility of making Sanford Lab at Homestake a national lab – the Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL).

According to Alonso, the Sanford Lab is already having an impact in South Dakota. In his lecture, he will discuss how researchers from USD and other institutions from throughout the state have proposed experiments at the lab and describe some of the projects presently underway, including activities involving students, teachers and researchers from The U.

Prior to being named director of the Sanford Underground Laboratory at Homestake last October, Alonso spent three decades at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California. For most of his career, Alonso worked with particle accelerators, including medical and security applications. He directed the Bevalac accelerator at Lawrence Berkeley conducting research into the relativistic heavy ions used in nuclear science and radiation therapy. Alonso earned his Ph.D. in nuclear physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as well as research at Yale University before joining the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

A photograph of Alonso is available for download at www.usd.edu/urelations/images/Alonso_J.jpg.