The construction of the Aguas Negras tunnel that will link Chile and Argentina is a great opportunity to have, for the very first time, an underground scientific laboratory of great depth in South America, where state of the art science will be carried out. Agua Negra Deep Experiment Site, A.N.D.E.S signifies a scientific integration among Latin American nations. The idea is to stablish an underground laboratory that will attract scientists from all over the world to develop first line experiments and to stablish experimental collaborations in South America.
This project represents a great opportunity to the scientific community because of the site´s geographical features which are very favorable from a scientific point of view. There is only 15 laboratories of this kind in the world, of which ANDES would be the third deepest in the planet at 1,750 meters underground, and the first one in the Southern hemisphere.
The advantage of an underground laboratory like ANDES is the mountain rock´s shielding effect to the cosmic rays, making possible the conduction of ultrasensitive measurements of phenomena very difficult to measure under other conditions, like the detection of neutrinos, particles with weak interactions and that, consequently, enables the detection of processes inside the Sun or the study of the Earth´s interior. Studies of Dark Matter may also be carried out, matter that supposedly makes up 75% of the Universe, and/or other areas of science like geology, geophysics, biology and seismology. This site will enable the development and the use of instrumentation highly sensitive to measure the otherwise undetectable.
ANDES administration will be carried out by a Latin American consortium of underground Experiments (CLES), composed by the region´s nations. Thus far it counts with the participation of Argentina, Chile, Brazil and Mexico, but other countries are expected to join the initiative. Representing our country and fulfilling the role of national coordinator is CCTVal´s scientist, Claudio Dib, physicist specialist in elementary particles.
Funds provided: Public Founds