Introduction to SLAC

SLAC 22 Aug 1994

This panel is under construction.

The Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) is a national laboratory operated by Stanford University for the US Department of Energy. SLAC has been in continuous use for over 25 years in a national research program that has made major contributions to our understanding of nature. The Center is one of a handful of laboratories worldwide that stands at the forefront of research into the basic constituents of matter and the forces that act between them.

SLAC does experimental and theoretical research in elementary particle physics using electron beams, plus a broad program of research in atomic and solid state physics, chemistry, biology and medicine using synchrotron radiation. Scientists from all parts of the United States and throughout the world participate in this work. There are active programs in the development of accelerators and detectors for high energy physics research and of new sources and instrumentation for synchrotron radiation research.

SLAC was founded in 1962, and the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory (SSRL) came into being in 1979 as a national users' facility. SSRL became part of the SLAC facility in 1992. Their combined staff is currently about 1400, of whom 150 are Ph.D. physicists. At any given time, there are typically 300-400 physicists from other institutions participating in the high energy physics program and 600 scientists in the synchrotron radiation program.

SLAC has the following major facilities:

as shown in this aerial view .

A number of significant events have been associated with these facilities and the physics done using them.

Located on 426 acres of Stanford University property, the laboratory is three miles west of the main campus. Its main entrance is on Sand Hill Road, just east of Interstate 280. To learn more, read the entire "Brief History," browse the pages labeled "SLAC" in the WorldWideWeb, or contact SLAC itself.

To go to the SLAC Home Page, press here.


Most of the text was originally extracted from "A Brief History of SLAC: An Introduction to the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center" (May, 1993) from the Public Affairs Office. Patrick Clancey was instrumental in scanning the SLAC aerial view.

E. Michael Riordan, Joan M. Winters