Fermilab
Users' Executive Committee
Users' Executive Committee
Fermi Research Alliance, LLC

Meetings and Minutes

Minutes of the 12 Oct 2007 UEC Meeting

Present:

Dan Hooper
Kevin Pitts
Mitch Soderberg
Kirsten Tollerfson

On video:

Ela Barberis
Matthew Jones
Sacha Kopp
Ashutosh Kotwal
Lee Sawyer

Absent:

Greg Landsberg
Chris Polly
Jean Slaughter
Peter Wittich

GSA Representatives:

Tyler Dorland
Robert Forrest
Elisabetta Pianori
Emanuel Strauss

Visit with Deputy Director Kim

(UEC) What has been the response of P5 and DOE to the Steering Group roadmap?

(YKK) Both P5 and the DOE Annual Review Committee commended the laboratory and the Steering Group for developing a strategic roadmap for the future. The initial response of both groups to the roadmap has been positive, but they expressed concerns about the budget and the resources that will be needed for Project X. P5 will likely review the Steering Group roadmap sometime in the early Spring of 2008. A few tens of millions of dollars would be needed for the overall design of Project X and for the R&D and industrialization of ILC cavities and cryomodules that are major components of Project-X.

(UEC) What is the status of the request for FY10 Tevatron operations?

(YKK) FY10 Tevatron operations will be included in the budget and resource planning although the final decision will be made sometime next year when we know more about the LHC schedule.

(UEC) What was your impression of the UEC hosted Town Hall to discuss the Steering Group report?

(YKK) Young-Kee was very happy with the large turnout and interest from the user community. It is apparent to her that the physics case for Project X needs to be made clearer to the particle physics community. There appears to be a gap in the opinions of the neutrino community and those outside of that community regarding the need for future experiments. She thinks we need to do our physics homework to explain to each other the importance of neutrino science (as well as other areas of potential research with Project X) and to understand it in the global context of particle physics. This is one of main goals for the November 16-17 physics workshop. Young-Kee also appreciated Barry Barish's response to the Steering Group report (http://www.linearcollider.org/cms/?pid=1000442), and Sacha Kopp's followup in FermiToday.

(UEC) What happens if the LHC turns on and sees lots of exciting physics in an ILC-like energy range around ~2010, after the decision to build Project X has already taken place? Would construction on Project X continue?

(YKK) Even if the exciting science is discovered so quickly at LHC, it could still take some years to negotiate an international project structure, select a site, and obtain firm financial commitments for the ILC. Thus if the decision to build Project X has already taken place prior to any of these, going ahead with Project X could still make sense.

Planning for Physics Workshop

Fermilab and the UEC will host a workshop focused on exploring the physics potential of Project X on November 16th and 17th. The November workshop will address the global physics case behind Project X, as well as discussing potential experiments that might be carried out. This workshop will be followed by an additional meeting in January or February (TBA) during which more specific physics goals of Project X and proposed experiments will be addressed. The timing of these workshop is tied to the date of the P5 review of the Project X proposal. The physics case developed at these workshops will help shape the presentation to take place at the P5 review, so it is important to encourage a large and diverse group of participants.

The website for these workshops is located at:

http://www.fnal.gov/directorate/Longrange/Steering_Public/workshop-physics.html

There is no registration fee for this workshop. There will be a poster session open to proponents of possible Project X experiments.

Chair's Report

Kevin Pitts reported on recent activities.

1.) He made a presentation on behalf of the UEC to the FRA board of directors. The FRA is very supportive of the UEC and our ongoing efforts. They were particularly complementary of our government relations work, and encouraged us to expand our efforts in "home district" visits with local representatives.

2.) The Users Office and Visa Office have merged their efforts in aiding international users. The new "International Services" group will be located in the Users Office and will be headed by Amanda Peterson starting Monday, October 15th. (See attached document).

Discussion of the UEC's role, goals for the year

The status of the UEC and its current activities was discussed. The primary goals of the UEC are:

1. To facilitate communications between the Laboratory and the users.
2. Work toward better quality of life at Fermilab.
3. Help the field of high energy physics present its case for community & governmental support.

First item discussed was whether there is any role the UEC could be fulfilling that it is not currently. Overall feeling was that there are no outstanding issues that we need to take up at this time. There was support for continuing Sacha's efforts to form relationships with UECs from other facilities (LHC, SLAC, non-HEP facilities, etc...), since these contacts have proven very beneficial in dealings with government relations. Sacha has put together a website (http://www.nufo.org) for this purpose.

The issue of whether or not the UEC should draft a letter to HEPAP expressing an opinion about the recent report on the University Grants Program (which Homer Neal presented at the previous UEC meeting) was discussed. It was agreed that such a letter should be drafted if there is consensus on the message we want to get across. The content of the response will be discussed at the next UEC meeting.

The decision was made for the UEC to host copies of important documents (Steering Group report, University Grants Program report, etc...) on its website in the future.

Subcommittee Participation, Subcommittee Chairs

Subcommittee assignments were made for the upcoming year.

Government Relations:

Chair: Peter Wittich
Dan Hooper
Matthew Jones
Sacha Kopp
Ashutosh Kotwal
Greg Landsberg
Kevin Pitts (ex officio)
Jean Slaughter

International Relations:

Chair: Ashutosh Kotwal
Ela Barberis
Elisabetta Pianori (GSA rep.)
Kevin Pitts (ex officio)

Outreach:

Chair: TBD
Dan Hooper
Matthew Jones
Kevin Pitts (ex officio)
Lee Sawyer
Kirsten Tollefson
Peter Wittich
Emanuel Strauss (GSA)

Quality of Life:

Chair: Kirsten Tollefson
Jorge Benitez (GSA)
Tyler Dorland (GSA)
Rob Forrest (GSA)
Elisabetta Pianori (GSA)
Kevin Pitts (ex officio)
Chris Polly
Mitch Soderberg
Emanuel Strauss (GSA)

Users Meeting:

Chair: Ela Barberis
Greg Landsberg
Kevin Pitts (ex officio)
Chris Polly
Lee Sawyer
Jean Slaughter
Mitch Soderberg



In addition to these subcommittee activities, Chris Polly will continue as UEC Secretary, while Mitch Soderberg will take care of the UEC webpage with backup support from Lee Sawyer

Local Congressional Visits

The UEC has already held one meeting focused on government relations and visits to local offices of Congressional representatives in various User districts. The purpose of these visits is to get Fermilab users to speak with the government representatives from their home district at their local offices. Ideally these visits will be coordinated with users of other government laboratories from the same home district. The message of these visits, in addition to advocating for support of the physical sciences, is to make the representatives aware of these user facilities (Fermilab, LHC, SLAC, etc...) and how they are utilized by citizens of their district.

Other Business

None.

Proposed Dates for Future UEC Meetings

-November 9, 2007
-December 7, 2007

Submitted by Mitch Soderberg

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Changes affecting the Users Office.

To present, the Users and Visa Offices have operated as separate entities serving their separate populations even though both were organizationally located within the H R Services Department of the Workforce Development and Resources Section. The closeness of visa/site access responsibilities in both the Users and Visa functions, and the evolving and growing number of Lab employees assigned for extended periods to locations away from the Fermilab site led to the decision to bring these activities into one group that we'll call "International Services", overseen by a newly created supervisory position.

This group will (ultimately) be physically located in the Atrium west - the Users Office will be where it is; the Visa function and new supervisor will move into the area vacated by Travel (new offices will be constructed during the next couple of months). The new supervisor, Amanda Peterson, is due to start work on Monday, October 15, 2007. She will oversee the daily operation of the Visa and Users functions, will be actively involved in visa work and will develop and operate long term assignment policies and procedures. Another employee will be hired for the Users Office to reinstate the staff level to two employees. While there may be some learning time, services provided to the UEC will continue as in the past.

Should there be any more specific questions, I'd be happy to address them.

Borys Jurkiw 10/11/07