(art)n Artists: 

Ellen Sandor, Chris Kemp, and Diana Torres

Collaborative Artists: 

Jennifer Raaf, Sam Zeller, Thomas Junk and the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory
Special Thanks Georgia Schwender, Kurt Riesselmann, and Anne Mary Teichert


Virtual Photograph/Digital PHSCologram Sculpture


Duratrans, Kodalth, Plexiglas


Neutrinos in a New Light: Selected Works of Art & Science, Fermilab Art Gallery, Batavia, IL, December 2, 2016-March 17, 2017: Exhibition Catalogue.




The bubble chamber PHSCologram sculpture was created as a reference to neutrino detectors of the past. A bubble chamber is lled with super-heated liquid, and charged particles traveling through the liquid leave trails of microscopic bubbles. The bubbles are expanded by changing the pressure of the chamber until they are large enough to be photographed.

Neutrinos cannot be seen directly; only the “aftermath” of their occasional collisions can be seen, and the neutrino type and energy must be inferred from the types and energies of the other particles that are created in the collision. The bubble trails of these other particles are photographed by cameras mounted at various locations on the chamber walls, and the trails curve in the images because of the magnetic eld inside the chamber. The radius of curvature is proportional to the mass of the particle and its velocity.

Data from these chambers is vintage, and scientists have far better ways of detecting neutrino interactions these days. However the bubble chamber subject matter was chosen by (art)n because the data images produced from these detectors are truly beautiful artworks that still resonate.

(art)n takes more of a metaphorical approach to this idea with a PHSCologram of the world created by two hands (partnering nations) with many antineutrinos being released ensuring safe use of uranium nuclear power is taking place and not weaponized plutonium.