Underground dark matter laboratory inaugurated in uranium mine
Jamshedpur: An underground dark matter laboratory for conducting experiments in fundamental physics involving rare event searches was on Saturday inaugurated in the oldest uranium mine at Jaduguda in Jharkhand.
Dr Sekhar Basu, Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), inaugurated the facility at a depth of 555 metre in the Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL) mine at Jadugoda, 30 km from here.
Speaking to reporters later at Jadugora mine premises, Basu said, "We knew of an estimated five per cent of the possible 30 per cent matters existing in the universe and this new facility will help us to research about the unknown matters."
"We have started working on it but it does not mean we will be successful,"he said.
"However, we will progress step by step to achieve the desired result," he said.
The laboratory has been set up by the UCIL and Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics (SINP), Kolkata by utilizing the available infrastructure and underground facilities of the Jaduguda mine.
This new physics laboratory at UCIL will be the first of its kind in the country after closure of a similar facility at Bharat Gold Mine in Kolar (Karnataka) in early 1992.
The present depth of Jaduguda mine is 905 metre. It is the second deepest operating underground mine of the country after Hutti Gold mine which is more than 1000 metre deep. Asked about the projects the DAE was working on, Basu said, the department has plans to develop four cancer hospitals on the line of Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, which he described as one of the best institutes of the world and the cheapest.
The hospitals are proposed at Vishakhapatnam , Mohali, Sangrur and at the BHU campus in Varanasi, he said adding that the investment proposal has to be cleared by the government, he said.
Emphasizing the need for participation of state governments, he said a small hospital with the co-operation of the Punjab government has been established at Sangrur.