U.S. Particle Accelerator School

Introduction to Accelerator Control Systems using EPICS course

Sponsoring University:

University of Chicago


Introduction to Accelerator Control Systems using EPICS


Martin Kraimer, Ned Arnold, Janet Anderson, Argonne National Lab and Robert Dalesio, Los Alamos National Lab

The Experimental Physics and Industrial Control System (EPICS) is an architecture for building scalable control systems. Current EPICS systems range in scale from single crate/single workstation sites with a few hundred `channels,' to more than 150 crate/30 workstation sites with over 200,000 channels. Students will be introduced to the theory and practice designing accelerator control systems using the EPICS toolkit. The course will cover the basics of implementing an EPICS-based control system. The course will include an EPICS overview, introduction to EPICS databases, record, device, and driver support, channel access concepts, the EPICS operator interface, and application software such as the alarm handler, the SDDS archiever and the EPICS archiever. The time will be divided equally between lecture and laboratory sessions. In the laboratory the student will design a database from specifications, download it to an IOC and interact with it using EPICS tools such as the operator interface (MEDM) and alarm handler. If time permits, methods of creating a channel access client will be presented. Prerequisites: Basic understanding of Unix (ls, rm, cd, mkdir, rmdir, logout, vi, ...); familiarity with the c language.