From particle physics to crickets


For several years Lab 2, located at over 1400 meters underground, hosted the C14-experiment and other low-background experiments. Due to its large size, isolated location, and easy access, it was chosen as the appropriate environment for the Callio Edible Insects from Mine (CEI) project. The aim of the project is to develop and test a sustainable, circular economy -based system for insect production. This meant the relocation of all other Lab 2 research activities during June and July 2019.
A new space near the main level was delegated for the scientific activities and experiments previously housed in Lab 2. The move was executed otherwise swiftly, but man- and womanpower was required in multiple shifts to first disassemble, and then reassemble, the C14-experiment’s shielding. This meant the careful packaging and transportation of over 200 (?) lead and copper bricks, each weighing 10-12 kilograms. A team was also required for the transportation of the Baltic Scientific Instruments HPGe spectrometer. The 800 kg spectrometer was first secured and then forklifted by a talented tractor operator the entire 1 km trip from Lab 2 to the main level.
The new location, named Lab 5, is in conjunction with the main level storage rooms and is only a short (100 meters) walk from the lift. Now visits to Lab 5 and its activities may be done even more quickly and easily than before and at best require only 3 minutes of travel via elevator. The move proved to be a success also in regard to the efficiency of future low-background experiments, as measurements in Lab 5 showed significantly lower levels of background radiation compared to Lab 2.