Sudbury Neutrino Observatory

The Sudbury Neutrino Observatory, or S.N.O. Project, is located in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada underground at the S.N.O. Lab. This highly engineered Reynolds Polymer acrylic sphere was used to understand the particle physics of neutrinos. This acrylic sphere was the first of its kind with a varying thickness of 5cm to 10cm and weighing 74,000 pounds. Adding to the complexity of this 12.2m diameter sphere it required 470m of bonds, the majority being completed onsite.

The governments of Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States, teamed up for this project, selecting Reynolds Polymer to construct this sphere because of our ability to provide the design, engineering, manufacturing, and the required onsite bonding and installation underground.

The onsite portion for this project was very unique as it had to be constructed 2km below the surface of the earth in a clean room. Reynolds Polymer was on site for approximately one and half years and this project was completed in December of 1997.

S.N.O. won the 2015 Noble Prize for Physics for the discovery of neutrino oscillations, which shows that neutrinos have mass. Peter J. Doe of the Cenpa University of Washington said, “King Arthur go the Nobel…. Couldn’t have done it without [Reynolds Polymer’s] acrylic vessel!”

Project: Sudbury Neutrino Observatory
Location: Ontario, Canada
Application: Acrylic Sphere
Year Opened: 1994


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