Meetings and Minutes
Minutes of the 8 May. 2009 UEC Meeting
Users Executive Committee members attending:
Discussion with Director Pier Oddone
Director Oddone met with members of the UEC.
Oddone: How was the Washington, DC trip?
(UEC): Overall it was a positive experience. It was different from last year's trip. Most
offices were supportive of science funding.
(UEC): What is the timescale for constructing a DUSEL detector?
Oddone: NSF and DOE are gradually coming together. We envision a decision to
proceed in 2010, obtain CD-2 in 2011, and begin construction in 2012-13.
(UEC): How strongly will the new DOE management champion HEP among their other
Oddone: Secretary Steven Chu, Under Secretary for Science nominee Steve Koonin,
and Under Secretary for Energy nominee Kristina Johnson would form a strong
team. We will know more with the next budget (FY11). They are still building the energy
portfolio within the Office of Science so competition is severe.
Although FY10 & FY11 budgets are expected to be tight, HEP should ramp up again in
(UEC): How is the lab doing?
Oddone: The accelerator is running very well. Manpower is tight, and we are trying to bring
in contract engineers to help.
(UEC): What about running the Tevatron in FY11?
Oddone: The lab and the experiments presented their case two weeks ago at DOE.
Dennis Kovar supports the idea, but we need to find about $27M to do it if FY11
running is approved.
(UEC): Do you think the LHC will turn on in the fall?
Oddone: There is still some concern about the superconductor-copper splices
at the magnet interfaces.
(UEC): If the Fermilab budget would double by 2014, as authorized in the
America COMPETES Act, what would the lab be doing with it?
Oddone: If the budget doubles in ten years (not five) as expected now, and
after adjusting for inflation, it would probably be a 40-50% increase in real
terms. Assuming the number of lab staff would stay constant, we would have
about $250M/year for construction, e.g., Project X.
DC Trip Summary (Dan Hooper)
(Director Oddone stayed for this discussion, too.)
Thanks to all who helped organize and conduct the visits. The trip went
well logistically - 43 people (including SLUO and USLUO) visited about 195
Congressional offices, as well as OMB, NSF, and DOE.
Some thoughts from attendees: overall positive; educational aspects were
received well, e.g., QUARKNET; DOE Office of Science needs to promote its
support of education in general and university research programs in particular;
although the House of Representatives has several "champions of science", the
Senate does not seem to have any such obvious member advocating for
the DOE Office of Science (while NSF and NASA do have some support).
A web-based form for entering individual trip reports will be
available next week. In the meantime, there is a PDF file on the wiki
that can be used to jot down the information.
Requests from Barb Book
Return your DC trip travel receipts and forms ASAP.
Barb handed out UEC nomination forms that will also be available at the Users'
Barb asked if we can develop a more automated way to count the votes in the
UEC elections. Although the votes are cast via the web, the counting is still
done by hand.
Users' Meeting Planning (Lee Sawyer)
There are only a few empty slots in the agenda to fill. We will be deciding
on the graduate student speakers within the next week.
Session chairs need to confirm their desire and availability.
Those who recruited speakers should pass on the speakers' email addresses to
Tom Katsouleas (Dean of Engineering at Duke, research in novel particle
acceleration techniques) will be the speaker for the Public Lecture on
We will make sure that poster presenters get to eat early so the food doesn't
disappear completely while they stand by their poster.
Outreach Workshop (Tricia Vahle and Karen Gibson)
June 4 - posters and demos in conjunction with the Users' Meeting.
June 5 - Colloquium and panel sessions
Michael Turner will give the colloquium from 12-1 in the auditorium.
Three panel sessions: Public Outreach (Manfred Paulini, Don Lincoln, Elizabeth
Clements, Rhianna Wisniewski); Educational Outreach (Roger Dixon, Erik Ramberg,
Jeff Larson, Mats Selen); Government Outreach (Kevin Pitts, Herman White, Young
We are planning to have a Tesla coil show at the Festa Italiana / Taste of India
(Wednesday evening of the Users' Meeting).
Quality of Life (Ron Moore)
Per Jeanne Koester (Fermilab recreation coordinator), the tentative date for
opening the pool in June 1.
Prices: Passes (family of 4) = $180 (additional members = $10 each),
individual = $80. Daily entry = $7, twilight (5-7 pm Mon-Fri) = $5.
They are hoping to begin selling passes by May 18th, pending arrival date of