Monday, June 2
Particle Astrophysics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: R. Carrigan, Fermilab
Title: Search for Dyson Spheres Using the IRAS Catalog
DIRECTOR'S COFFEE BREAK - 2nd Flr X-Over
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II
Special Topics: Tevatron Orbit Stabilization; CMS Installation and
Tuesday, June 3
Summer Lecture Seminar - One West
Speaker: L. Lederman, Illinois Math and Science Academy/Fermilab
Title: A Crack in the Mirror: A 36 Hour Experiment in Particle Physics
DIRECTOR'S COFFEE BREAK - 2nd Flr X-Over
THERE WILL BE NO ACCELERATOR PHYSICS AND TECHNOLOGY SEMINAR TODAY
Click here for NALCAL,
a weekly calendar with links to additional information.
Monday, June 2
- Spicy beef & rice soup
- Corned beef Reuben
- Honey Dijon glazed pork loin
- Vegetable lasagna
- Chicken oriental wrap pineapple
- Assorted slice pizza
- Pacific Rim rice bowl
Wilson Hall Cafe Menu
Wednesday, June 4
- Salad nicoise with fresh grilled tuna
- Lemon cheese cake
Thursday, June 5
- Green bean, feta & walnut salad
- Medallions of beef w/ cabernet sauce
- Roasted baby potatoes
- Steamed asparagus
- Lemon yogurt cake with strawberries & cream
Chez Leon Menu
Call x4598 to make your reservation.
Fermilab built parts to help GLAST search for
Artist rendering of the
GLAST satellite. Credit: NASA/Sonoma State University/Aurore
To look for keys to the mysteries of the universe,
NASA will launch its Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope later this
week. GLAST will survey the entire sky daily with the highest
sensitivity yet. It will work more like a particle detector than a
telescope, detecting the signals of high-energy gamma rays and tracking
their cosmic origins.
Although not a GLAST collaborator, a Fermilab team
manufactured a key component of GLAST's main instrument, the Large Area
Telescope. Fermilab's CNC routing group within the Particle Physics
Division's Technical Centers manufactured and finished sheets of
plastic scintillator tiles that surround the heart of the GLAST
Fermilab was chosen for this project because of
its experience with manufacturing similar components for the Tevatron
detectors, the MINOS neutrino detector and the LHC's CMS detector.
"The devil is in the details," said PPD Technical
Centers Department Head Hogan Nguyen. "The handling of plastics is
highly specialized in these groups. The teams are highly sought after
for their ability to work with plastics."
Phyllis Deering, who retired two years ago, led a
Fermilab team of specialized technicians who worked on parts for the
GLAST mission between 2002 and 2004. Three subgroups were led by
Deering, head of the CNC routing group; John Korienek, head of machine
development; and Eileen Hahn, head of the Vacuum Thin Films group.
Korienek said the group often gets calls to create
these very specialized parts.
"Most of the time we're on the ground floor of experiments," he said.
The scintillator tiles make up the cosmic veto
shield, or Anti Coincidence Detector, which identifies charged
particles that are unimportant background. The machine development
group manufactured and assembled the scintillator tiles to have an
almost mirror-like finish, making them highly efficient to charged
particles. The tiles generate light from the faint flashes of passing
charged particles. That light then gets picked up by optical fibers,
which were diamond cut and processed by Fermilab's thin films group.
The fibers funnel the light to photo-multiplier tubes. These signals
tell the telescope if the event was a charged particle, which on-board
electronics should weed out as noise.
"All processes we do have tight quality controls
and experience. You don't get the same high-quality mirroring in
industry," Hahn said.
"NASA's GLAST was a chance to do something
special. It's going up in the air. We're excited, because it is part of
the American identity. NASA represents exploration. The U.S. identifies
with NASA. To an ordinary citizen, who doesn't understand a lot of
experiments, it's difficult to try to explain what you do. But when you
say, 'Oh yeah, you see that NASA experiment going up? We're a part of
that,' they understand," she added.
-- Rhianna Wisniewski
Does Fermilab have a future?
From Science, May 30, 2008
The United States's last particle physics lab
finds itself in turmoil, with its current experiments soon to wind down
and nothing under construction to replace them. Physicists wonder
whether the lab--and particle physics in the United States--will survive
Like a magnet, particle physics drew David Mason
when he was an undergraduate. "I was initially attracted by all the
cool toys we play with," says the postdoc here at Fermi National
Accelerator Laboratory. "Basically, everything we use we have to
construct for ourselves because it's never been thought of before."
Mason, 37, first worked in a lab as an undergrad at the University of
Oregon, Eugene. In 1996, he came to Fermilab, whose bucolic
2750-hectare campus preserves a patch of quiet in the suburban sprawl
60 kilometers west of Chicago, as an Oregon graduate student to study
particles called neutrinos. After finishing his doctorate 2 years ago,
he signed on to collaborate on an experiment that will be done in
Now, Mason finds himself spending his savings to
keep his young family afloat. Rocked by budget cuts late last year,
Fermilab will soon lay off about 140 of 1950 staff members. In
February, the lab instituted a rolling furlough that, until year's end,
requires employees like Mason to take 1 week every 2 months as unpaid
leave. The 25% cut in every other paycheck hurts, says Mason, whose
wife stays home with his 2-year-old son.
Read the full version here (pdf file).
US particle physics
spared the axe
From New Scientist, May 30, 2008
Concerns for the future of U.S. particle physics
were allayed on Thursday. A panel of senior physicists reporting to the
Department of Energy (DOE), the main U.S. funder for accelerator
laboratories, said that it should be possible for the U.S. to commit to
several cutting-edge projects including a new US-based linear collider,
which had been threatened by budget cuts.
"We can't do everything we'd like to do, it can't
all go as quickly as it should, but we can do a great deal," says Mel
Shochet from the University of Chicago. "Under all but the very worst
scenario we will be able to make significant progress in all areas."
Particle physics is at a precarious crossroads in
the U.S., as the hub of activity shifts from the US to Europe. The
highest energy accelerator in the world, the Tevatron at Fermilab, will
be superseded later this year by the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at
CERN, the European centre for particle physics near Geneva. The
Tevatron will close in the next few years.
Continued support for U.S. scientists working at
the LHC should be a major priority, the panel said at a meeting chaired
by Shochet in Washington, D.C. on Thursday. U.S. researchers comprise
the largest group from any single nation working at the LHC, with
around half of US particle physicists involved in LHC collaborations.
Give safety a hand
Though versatile, the safe
use of simple cutting blades relies entirely on the skill and vigilance
of the user. Specialized cutting tools, on the other hand, tend to have
safety features built into their design.
Hands represent one of the greatest tools a worker
has, and one of the most vulnerable.
At Fermilab, one-third of recordable work-related injuries occur to
hands. In the last 24 years, that accounts for 933 cuts, sprains,
pinches and repetitive-motion injuries.
Fingers and thumbs accounted for the majority of
hand injuries at 62 percent. Palms and the back of the hand accounted
for 24 percent, while wrists accounted for the remaining 18 percent.
The major types of hand injuries were lacerations, at 40 percent, and
contusions, at 10 percent.
Knife slips figured prominently in these injuries.
Typically these injuries could have been avoided by the use of
purpose-built cutting tools, such as wire strippers.
Gravity led to many other injuries. People got
hurt when objects fell onto their hands or when they tried to catch a
falling object. Wrists got strained when workers tried to break a fall
with their hands. Simply reaching out without looking first sometimes
caused lacerations because sharp edges were unexpectedly encountered.
Other dangers include edges of newly worked
metals, interiors of metal cabinets and poor hand position. Forceful
flexing of your wrists during repetitive tasks can aggravate a case of
carpal tunnel syndrome.
To avoid hand injuries, consider the following
questions before you begin working.
- How could my hands get hurt in this activity?
- Are there gloves that I should be wearing?
- Am I using the best tools for the job?
- How should I react if something falls?
- Are there sharp edges I should watch out for?
- Is repetitive motion causing wrist discomfort?
Tip of the Week Archive
In Memoriam: Art Neubauer
Arthur William Neubauer, 78, a longtime resident
of Downers Grove and a
retired Fermilab employee passed away May 7, 2008 at Good Samaritan
Hospital in Downers Grove.
Art retired from the Computing Division in 1994
after 25 years of
service as an Electical Engineer. His name and the name PREP (Physics
Research Equipment Pool) were practically synonymous at the Lab. Art
was the manager of PREP and the Instrument Repair Group in the
Computing Division. Every person who installed or ran an experiment or
test beam activity knew Art and valued his technical advice and his
willingness to help locate some type of electronics and equipment to do
Prior to working at Fermilab, Art was employed at
the University of
Chicago starting at age 18 and then at Argonne National Laboratory for
25 years. His top priorities were always his family and friends.
-- Adam Walters
Read the Chicago Tribune obituary
Users' meeting June 4-5
Fermilab will host the annual Users' meeting on Wednesday, June 4, and
Thursday, June 5. For more information or to register, visit the Users' Meeting Web site.
Project X workshop June 5-6
Following the Users' Meeting June 5, Fermilab and the UEC will hold the
third Workshop on Physics with a high-intensity proton source. The
workshop begins with a town meeting in One West on the evening of
Thursday, June 5, and continues the next day. A preliminary program and
registration are here.
Scottish Country Dancing Tuesday
Scottish Country Dancing will move to Ramsey Auditoirum for the summer
beginning Tuesday, June 3. Instruction begins at 7:30 p.m. and
newcomers are always welcome. Most dances are fully taught and walked
through, and you do not need to come with a partner. For more
information call (630) 840-8194 or (630)584-0825 or e-mail.
New Perspectives Conference June 3
The 2008 Annual New Perspectives Conference will take place on June 3
in conjunction with the Users' Meeting. The one-day conference offers
talks given by and geared towards undergraduate, graduate and
postdoctoral physicists. The conference includes a poster session.
Applications for the poster session still are being accepted. Please click
here for more information.
Heart risk screening June 3, 10
Wellness Works and Delnor-Community Hospital will offer a heart risk
screening on Tuesday, June 3, and Tuesday, June 10. The assessment will
take place by scheduled appointment between 6:30 a.m. and 10:45 a.m.
for Fermilab employees in the EOC on the ground floor of Wilson Hall.
Those interested can sign up on the ES&H Web page. Participants must fast for 12
hours but can drink water.
June 6 deadline for The University of
Chicago Tuition Remission Program
The deadline for applying for the tuition remission program at The
University of Chicago for the Summer 2008 quarter is June 6. For more
information and enrollment forms, contact Nicole Gee at x3697 or visit
the Web site.
Fermi Research Alliance, LLC (FRA)
retirement plan changes
The Summary Plan Description for the FRA Retirement Plan has been
updated to reflect a major change to the plan: A terminated participant
is not subject to the age and service requirement in order to be
eligible for a cash withdrawal. You may elect a cash distribution from
TIAA and CREF Retirement Annuities. Withdrawals from the TIAA
Traditional Retirement Annuity accumulations are only possible using a
Transfer Payout Annuity (TPA). If the accumulation is less than
$10,000, it would be provided in one lump sum.The Summary Plan
Description for the Retirement Plan is posted on the Benefits Web site for your review.