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The SNOLAB Science Programme: cutting-edge science from a deep hole in the ground

Nigel SNOLAB is a deep underground research facility, hosted 2km beneath the surface of the Earth in a working mine at Creighton, near Sudbury, Ontario. Initially the site of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory, which unambiguously demonstrated flavour-change in neutrinos created in the fusion process of the Sun, SNOLAB now hosts a multi-disciplinary programme. Why do we need to go to such great depths to probe the Universe?

Several of the major questions studied in contemporary astro-particle and sub-atomic physics, such as the search for the Galactic dark matter, and studies of neutrino properties, require the ultra-quiet radiation environment afforded by such deep underground facilities. In these facilities, the cosmic radiation induced backgrounds in the detection systems are reduced to a manageable level, with additional shielding from natural ambient radioactivity and low background construction of detector systems. This talk will provide an overview of the science programme at SNOLAB, will review the detector systems used for these studies, and outline future plans for the facility.