Lyndon Evans


Lyndon Evans
Fields of study
Nuclear physics
IEEE Simon Ramo Medal


A master of accelerator physics, Lyndon Evans’ leadership in the design and successful development of the Large Hadron Collider has resulted in one of engineering’s greatest milestones and is allowing scientists to expand our knowledge of fundamental physics. As the project director (1995–2009) of the highest energy particle collider ever created, Dr. Evans was responsible for the research and development of the large superconducting magnets, the 27-km-long super-fluid cryogenic system, the integration of thousands of highly accurate power supplies, the optical design of beam collision regions, and the related instrumentation and control systems. He coordinated the efforts of thousands of engineers from around the world, and his ability to make difficult decisions when was faced with problems was critical to keeping the project on track. The Large Hadron Collider went live in 2008, but during start-up operations it faced one of its most serious challenges when a superconducting splice between two of the magnets failed near the peak design current during a sector test. This caused a large number of magnets to terminate in an uncontrolled way. Dr. Evans and his team analyzed the failure, determined how to prevent this type of failure in the future, and executed the work that was needed to resume operations. After a one-year interruption, beam commissioning was completed very quickly and science operations began in 2010. In 2012, the large detectors, center of mass energy, and luminosity provided by the Large Hadron Collider enabled the discovery of the elusive Higgs boson, which had been the object of intense searches for 30 years. This discovery allows scientists to validate the standard model of particle physics.

A Fellow of the Royal Society (U.K.), Dr. Evans is currently director of linear collider collaboration with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), Geneva, Switzerland. Evans was awarded the 2014 IEEE Simon Ramo Medal.