Fermilab Today Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Tuesday, April 14
3:30 p.m.
4 p.m.
Accelerator Physics and Technology Seminar - One West
Speaker: Eliana Gianfelice-Wendt, Fermilab
Title: Accelerator Physics Developments for Tevatron Run II: Lecture 2: Linear Optics Measurements (Closed Orbit Distortion, Turn-by-Turn)

Wednesday, April 15
3:30 p.m.

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


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Secon Level 3

Wilson Hall Cafe

Tuesday, April 14
- Creamy turkey vegetable
- Chili dog
- Shepard's pie
- Chicken cacciatore
- Italian panini w/provolone
- Assorted slice pizza
- Super burrito

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, April 15
- Fettuccini w/shrimp & portobello
- Arugula salad
- Cold lime soufflé

Thursday, April 16
- Stuffed portobello mushroom
- Ancho fired pork tenderloin
- Pasta primavera
- Strawberry shortcake

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Watch out for and report aggressive geese

A female Canada goose protects her nest.

It's mating season, the time of year when Canada geese aggressively defend their nests and goslings. This instinctual behavior is understandable in the wild, but problems arise when the nests are in human high-traffic areas, such as near building entrances. Geese view people who need to enter those buildings as intruders.

Employees and visitors have encountered geese that have threatened and chased them, and a small few have been struck or hurt by the birds. When injuries occur, they are usually minor and due to a fall from trying to elude the goose. However, one employee this year was injured by a goose that flew onto the employee's shoulder and attacked. The employee suffered a scratched shoulder and a bruise on the head. The incident required first aid and time off work.

If you get near a nest or gosling, you may hear a goose's defensive hiss. This is typically a first warning. If you are near their young, the birds may charge or fly at you. The aggressive behavior usually lasts from the time eggs are laid until the offspring take on adult coloring in May.

Here are some tips for dealing with aggressive Canada geese.

  • Know where geese are likely to be in your area. Watch for geese and avoid nesting areas and goslings.
  • Show them who is boss: When challenged by a goose, Fermilab's Roads and Grounds Department workers recommend making yourself look larger and more threatening by yelling and flapping your arms. Maybe it doesn't look especially cool, but this technique has been highly effective in getting geese to back down.
  • Protect yourself. If a goose attacks, or threatens to attack, put whatever items are available to you, such as a briefcase, purse or umbrella, between you and the goose.
  • Most importantly: Please report problem geese and their locations as soon as possible to Roads and Grounds at x3303. This can help to prevent others from being harassed or attacked by the same goose. Roads and Grounds staff can place temporary fences between nests and walkways or apply deterrent chemicals to grassy areas where geese forage.

Fermilab has also contracted with the Geese Police, a goose-control company from Naperville, that employs specially-trained border collies to chase geese away from building entrances and lawns. This technique may take a few days to work, but is highly effective.


In the News

Is dark energy getting weaker?

From New Scientist, April 10, 2009

After billions of years of runaway expansion, is the universe starting to slow down? A new analysis of nearby supernovae suggests space might not be expanding as quickly as it once was, a tantalising hint that the source of dark energy may be more exotic than we thought.

For more than a decade, astrophysicists have grappled with evidence of a baffling force that seems to be pushing the universe apart at an ever-increasing rate. Exactly what constitutes the dark energy responsible for this cosmic speed-up is unknown, says Michael Turner at the University of Chicago. "The simplest question we can ask is 'does the dark energy change with time?'"

So far, the evidence has suggested that dark energy is constant, though its effect on the universe has become stronger as the universe has expanded and the gravitational force between objects weakens with distance.

Read more

In the News

What happens at absolute zero?

From Globe and Mail, April 10, 2009

When something is cooled to absolute zero (Kelvin), do the electrons and other sub-atomic particles stop moving? Or does "absolute zero" only mean that movement stops at the molecular level (as opposed to the sub-atomic level)? Peter, Someplace, World

I've heard that at absolute zero molecular motion stops. But what happens to electrons, do they also stop? If they do, what prevents them from falling into the nucleus? William, Austin, Texas, USA

Absolute zero is zero degrees on the Kelvin thermometer scale; it corresponds to about -460 degrees Fahrenheit and -273 degrees Celsius.

Even space isn't that cold. The lingering afterglow of the big bang heats space to 3 degrees Kelvin, on average - some colder pockets exist. The Boomerang Nebula (at 1 degree K, 5000 light years away) is the coldest known natural spot in the universe.

We have artificially lowered the temperature of atoms on Earth to almost absolute zero. Atoms near absolute zero slow by orders of magnitude from their normal room-temperature speed. At room temperature, air molecules zip around at about 1800 kilometres an hour. At about 10 micro degrees Kelvin, Rubidium atoms move at only about 0.18 kilometres an hour - slower than a three-toed sloth, says physicist Luis Orozco of the University of Maryland.

Read more

Director's Corner

A week of reviews

Pier Oddone

Last week two very important review committees came to the laboratory. Their respective meetings spanned the full week. Steve Holmes, who played important roles in both reviews, spent five solid days in the Comitium!

The first review was by the Muon Technical Advisory Committee (MUTAC), chaired by David Rubin of Cornell University. The committee reports to the laboratory directors of Fermilab, Brookhaven National Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory on the progress and plans for a multi-TeV muon collider as developed by the The Neutrino Factory and Muon Collider Collaboration (NFMCC) and the Muon Collider Task Force (MCTF). While there is general agreement that discoveries at the LHC will require the development of a lepton collider, we will not know the energy of such a collider until we learn new physics from the LHC. By far, the most straightforward collider to follow the LHC discoveries would be the ILC, provided most of the important physics lies below one TeV. If the LHC shows us that substantial physics lies above one TeV, we will need an affordable new technology for a multi-TeV lepton collider. This will take time to develop.

Beyond our strong R&D program on the ILC, to prepare for the possibility that we may need a higher energy collider, we at Fermilab are carrying out an R&D program on the muon collider with MCTF and NFMCC. CERN is pursuing a compact linear collider, CLIC, which uses very high-current beams to drive high energy e+ e- beams (using the "two beam" accelerator concept).

The MUTAC felt that progress in the last year was impressive. It also emphasized the need to ramp up the R&D to reach a plausible paper design by 2012-13. Equally important, it recommended we narrow down some of the technical options soon. This will be a hard thing to do for a collaboration that has been creative, coming up with many new ideas. A design by 2012-2013 would allow a set of technical demonstrations of the cooling systems before the end of the decade, a time when a complete design and cost would be ready for consideration.

The second review of the week was by the FRA Science Visiting Committee, set up by the board of directors of FRA to review our scientific program and plans. This year's review focused primarily on the research programs at the intensity and cosmic frontiers. Our programs will emerge stronger because distinguished scientists in the community look at our activities with fresh eyes, evaluate our strategy as we move into the future and advise us on improvements and course corrections. The committee under the chairmanship of Professor Marjorie Shapiro of LBNL kicked the tires hard and found them in very good shape, a credit to all our staff.

We are very appreciative of the effort and energy invested in the reviews by our distinguished colleagues on these committees. We value their advice greatly.

Accelerator Update

April 10-13
- Five stores provided ~ 48 hours of luminosity
- Accumulator bend bus power supply ground fault trips
- Store 6966 aborted

*The integrated luminosity from 4/6/09 to 4/13/09 was 27.08 inverse pico barns.

Read the Current Accelerator Update
Read the Early Bird Report
View the Tevatron Luminosity Charts


Benefits Update

Changes to participating pharmacies Blue Cross pharmacy program

Have a safe day!

April is National Humor Month...click on the link for the joke of the day

Free 30-minute ab workout

Chic Gamine at Fermilab April 18

Fermilab club & league fair

Blackberry Oaks Golf League

Got golf? Join the Fermilab Golf League

Muscle toning classes

Argentine Tango classes begin April 15

Barn dance April 19

Artist Within - employee art show '09

Fermilab blood drive April 21 and 22

MathWorks Seminar - April 21

NALWO - Mexican cuisine cooking demonstration

Word 2007: Styles and Templates class offered April 23

Lederman Science Center to host outdoor fair - April 26

Greek folk dance workshop - April 30

NALWO - spring tea - May 1

Rapid hardware prototyping and industrial control application development seminar May 13

Coed softball season begins May 13

Conflict Management and Negotiation Skills class June 3 and 10

Discount tickets to "1964"...Beatles tribute - June 6

SciTech summer camps

Additional Activities

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