Fermilab Today Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2008

Wednesday, Sept. 24
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Pixels08 Conference - One West
3:30 p.m.
4 p.m.
Fermilab Colloquium - One West
Speaker: Andriy Lomako, DALSA Corporation
Title: Solid State Imagers in Space and Scientific Applications - DALSA Technology (In conjunction with Pixel 2008 Workshop)

Thursday, Sept. 25
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Pixels08 Conference - One West
11 a.m.
Theoretical Physics Seminar (NOTE TIME) - Curia II
Speaker: Antonio Delgado, University of Notre Dame
Title: Higgs-Unparticle Interplay
3:30 p.m.

Click here for NALCAL,
a weekly calendar with links to additional information.



Partly cloudy

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Current Security Status

Secon Level 3

Wilson Hall Cafe

Wednesday, Sept. 24
- Smart cuisine: shrimp gumbo
- Pizza burger
- *Smart cuisine: garlic herbs sole
- Mongolian beef
- California club
- Assorted slice pizza
- Chicken cajun pasta

*Carb restricted alternative

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Sept. 24
- Southwest cornish hens
- Chipotle sweet potatoes
- Orange carmel flan

Thursday, Sept. 25
- Closed

Chez Leon Menu
Call x4598 to make your reservation.


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Barnes says bon appetit

Konnie Barnes, Chez Leon's new head chef, prepares a meal.

While patrons of Chez Leon may not recognize the restaurant's new head chef, they likely know her cooking. Konni Barnes, 46, started working in the kitchen at 17.

"And I hope to be here another 20 or 30 years," Barnes said. "I plan on keeping Chez Leon open as long as people will keep coming."

Former head chef Tita Jensen asked Barnes to take over the restaurant when she retired. Jensen often challenged Barnes to try new things - especially exotic food.

"When I started here, I wouldn't eat anything," Barnes said. "I would just go to the bar and get a hot dog or something. Now I try everything - mussels, squid."

Barnes plans to maintain the kind of variety longtime Chez Leon patrons have come to expect. She inherited more than 150 cookbooks from her predecessor. But she also plans to include homey favorites inspired by her adolescence in Aurora, where she fixed spaghetti, meatloaf and stews for her five sisters while her mother worked nights.

"Nobody would ever sit in the living room," Barnes said. "You'd always congregate in the kitchen. It was just the place to be." Barnes said she found a refuge in Chez Leon's kitchen, too.

"I loved talking to people and all that," she said. "But here, I liked the peacefulness. Even with the hustle and bustle of getting the dishes out and making everything, it was kind of my sanctuary."

But Barnes' new job will force her out of her comfort zone - literally.

"A lot of people don't know Konni because she tends to stay in the kitchen," said Jack Hawkins, accommodations manager at Fermilab.

Now that Barnes has the run of the place, she may need to reach back to her waitressing roots, Hawkins said. "I think now we'll see a more extroverted Konni."

-- Kathryn Grim

LHC Update

LHC re-start scheduled for 2009

Investigations at CERN* following a large helium leak into sector 3-4 of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) tunnel have indicated that the most likely cause of the incident was a faulty electrical connection between two of the accelerator's magnets. Before a full understanding of the incident can be established, however, the sector has to be brought to room temperature and the magnets involved opened up for inspection. This will take three to four weeks. Full details of this investigation will be made available once it is complete.

"Coming immediately after the very successful start of LHC operation on 10 September, this is undoubtedly a psychological blow," said CERN Director General Robert Aymar. "Nevertheless, the success of the LHC's first operation with beam is testimony to years of painstaking preparation and the skill of the teams involved in building and running CERN's accelerator complex. I have no doubt that we will overcome this setback with the same degree of rigour and application."

The time necessary for the investigation and repairs precludes a restart before CERN's obligatory winter maintenance period, bringing the date for restart of the accelerator complex to early spring 2009. LHC beams will then follow.

Particle accelerators such as the LHC are unique machines, built at the cutting edge of technology. Each is its own prototype, and teething troubles at the start-up phase are therefore always possible.

"The LHC is a very complex instrument, huge in scale and pushing technological limits in many areas," said Peter Limon, who was responsible for commissioning the world's first large-scale superconducting accelerator, the Tevatron at Fermilab in the USA. "Events occur from time to time that temporarily stop operations, for shorter or longer periods, especially during the early phases."

Read full release

Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:
Today's CERN press release and many related news stories mistakenly report that I led the commissioning of the Tevatron. I was an enthusiastic member of the Tevatron commissioning team, but I did not lead that heroic effort.

-- Peter Limon, Fermilab physicist

In the News

Bison roam prairie at Fermilab

From Chicago Tribune, Sept. 22, 2008

Lab has had animals since 1969

The herd appeared docile, grazing quietly on the lush prairie and flicking away flies with their tails.

But John Plese knew better. He dared not get out of his truck, parked just feet from a 1,500-pound bull. If there's one thing he's learned as Fermilab's chief herdsman, it's this: Never let your guard down around a bison.

"You can't give him a hug or he might say, 'What are you doing?' and try to gore you," he said.

For nearly 40 years, a small herd of bison has roamed at Fermilab, the renowned physics laboratory in west suburban Batavia.

For some, this is their permanent home on the range, where they eventually will die of old age and will be buried at a bison cemetery on the property.

Read more


Summer reflections

Kay Van Vreede, the head of the Workforce Development and Resources Section, wrote this week's column.

Kay Van Vreede

If the Fermilab cafeteria is full of unfamiliar young faces, it must be summertime. A host of Fermilab summer programs allow high school and undergraduate students and their teachers to experience first hand the excitement of working toward discoveries in high-energy physics.

Summer students become active participants in the research process.

Dylan Nelson, one of eight students in a DOE program a Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship, worked with high school QuarkNet program students to make an astrophysics measurement. The group helped measure the mass of star clusters using weak lensing. A highlight was the measurement of the Virgo cluster, the star grouping where the Milky Way resides, something that theorists during the last decade thought was impossible, said Jim Annis, who served as Nelson's mentor.

Students in other programs had an equally enlightening time.

The Target Program brought 12 students from local high schools to the laboratory for classroom instruction and daily work projects. Work assignments included assisting with space allocations, digitizing documents, data entry, data mining and cable testing.

"I enjoyed the fact that I got to get up every day, come to such a wonderful place like Fermilab, participate in something new and exciting .," wrote participant Tommie Naylor in the program evaluation.

"The classroom portion (of the program) was just phenomenal," wrote participant Carlos Salgado. "It had more hands-on activities than I would have imagined. The subjects were just so interesting and quite fun! I can honestly say all of the program was interesting from start to finish."

Summer Internships in Science and Technology, a program for undergraduates, brought 12 students from across the U.S. to partner with Fermilab researchers to learn about electrical engineering, mathematics, mechanical engineering, physics and computer science.

Our other undergraduate summer programs, which drew attendees from across the globe, included four Internships for Physics Majors; three Pre-service Teacher Interns; and five Lee Teng, or Illinois Accelerator Institute, students.

Our teacher programs included four high school students and one teacher in the QuarkNet research program, five middle school teachers in the DOE Academics Creating Teacher Session program, and several Teachers Research Associates Program teachers.

Thanks to the program leaders for all the work they put in to make these summer programs successful

Safety Update

ES&H weekly report, Sept. 23

This week's safety report, compiled by the Fermilab ES&H section, lists two incidents. The laboratory has worked 34 days without a reportable accident. Find the full report here.

Safety report archive


Have a safe day!

Book Fair Sept. 24
Pick up discounted books and gifts at the Book Fair, held in the Wilson Hall atrium Wednesday, Sept. 24, from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. The event, which is sponsored by the Recreation Office, is also brought to you by Books Are Fun.

Kyuki-Do begins Sept. 29
Kyuki-Do, a Korean martial art similar to Taekwondo, can help teach you balance, power, grace and self confidence. Classes begin Sept. 29 and are held for six weeks on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5 - 6 p.m. at the Recreation Facility in the Village. You need to register through the Recreation Office and have a Recreation Facility membership.

Mathematica 6 software in library
Wolfram's Mathematica 6 software is now loaded on one computer in the Fermilab Library on the 3rd floor of Wilson Hall. Anyone at Fermilab is welcome to use it. Please bring a thumb or flash drive if you would like to save your work. The library also has a circulating collection of books about Mathematica and a subscription to the journal Mathematica. Learn more.

Save the date: labwide party on Oct. 17
To say thank you and to celebrate Fermilab's achievements of the last year, the Fermi Research Alliance will host a labwide party in the Wilson Hall atrium on Friday, Oct. 17, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. The party will feature international snacks, beverages, music and door prizes. All Fermilab employees, users, contractors and DOE employees are invited.

Thursday Fermilab documentary aired
Fermilab employees and users can get an early look at a PBS documentary on Fermilab's race to find the Higgs boson and other physics beyond the Standard Model. The Chicago-based directors of "Atom Smashers" will air their 73-minute documentary in Ramsey Auditorium at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25. The directors also will answer questions from the audience, such as why they chose to spend 3 years chronicling life at Fermilab and why they think the general public will find the quest for discovery engrossing.

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