Thursday, Jan. 20, 2011

Have a safe day!

Thursday, Jan. 20
2:30 p.m.
Theoretical Physics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: Daniel Stolarski, University of Maryland
Title: The Bestest Little Higgs
3:30 p.m.
4 p.m.
Accelerator Physics and Technology Seminar - One West
Speaker: Alexander Mikhailichenko, Cornell University
Title: The Source of Polarized Positrons for ILC with Positron Collection by Lithium Lens

Friday, Jan. 21
3:30 p.m.

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a weekly calendar with links to additional information.

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Secon Level 3

Wilson Hall Cafe

Thursday, Jan. 20

- Breakfast: Apple sticks
- Santa Fe black bean soup
- Steak tacos
- Chicken Wellington
- Chimichangas
- Baked ham & Swiss on a ciabatta roll
- Assorted sliced pizza
- Crispy fried chicken salad

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Friday, Jan. 21

- French onion soup
- Medallions of beef with merlot sauce
- Potato gratin
- Steamed green beans
- Marzipan cake w/bittersweet chocolate sauce

Wednesday, Jan. 26
- Poached salmon with scallion sauce
- Vegetable of the season
- Long grain rice
- Yogurt cake with raspberry sauce

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Lab organization bolstered by Wehmann’s computing skills

Alan Wehmann helped design much of the software for NuMI and keeps a jar of Numi tea in his office as a reminder. Photo: Tona Kunz

Alan Wehmann was a high school student in 1957 when Russia’s Sputnik satellite made headlines. It stirred his passion for science, and set the trajectory of his career toward physics and landed him at a then-fledgling Fermilab in 1969.

“That first year, the offices were located in Oakbrook,” Wehmann recalled. Excavation of the main ring was still under way at the Batavia laboratory. “You could see the concrete hoops (for the accelerator),” he said.

As the laboratory took shape before his eyes during the last 40 years, Wehmann became known as a man of quiet determination who got the job done.

“He is not a boisterous, look-at-me type individual but rather has kept a low-level, even-keel profile and he let his projects speak volumes for him,” said long-time colleague Paul Czarapata, deputy division head of the Accelerator Division.

This even-keel nature, combined with his computer savvy and organizational skills proved instrumental to the laboratory during the Tiger Team Inspections initiated by the DOE in the 1980’s. Preparation for the inspections created “massive reports“, said Wehmann, who used early computer programs to organize the vast accumulation of information into a useful database.

Soon Wehmann was sought after by many groups and projects to organize their documentation and help with web and doc-db files, Czarapata added.

“For our major projects, NuMI and NoVA, Alan has had an invaluable role in leading efforts to provide the capability and organization for efficient order and usability of the thousands of documents they generate,” said Sam Childress, NuMI operations coordinator.

Wehmann had been on partial retirement recently, and his last official day was Dec.14, 2010. He will continue to work as a guest scientist helping with NOvA and the Education Office’s work with high school students. Wehmann enjoys watching the next generation marvel at today’s science just as he marveled at Sputnik.

“Its pretty mind blowing what the modern kid can be involved in,” he said. “You can really go far if you have that inclination.”

--Rita Hoover

In the News

Fermilab leader promises important work will go on

From The Beacon News, Jan. 19, 2011

While the Tevatron will close, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory still will have its place of importance in the world of physics research, Fermilab Director Pier Oddone said Wednesday.

The laboratory had anticipated the landmark particle accelerator would be closing in the next three years, and Fermilab received word from the U.S. Department of Energy last week that it will halt funding for the accelerator in September.

On Wednesday, Oddone addressed employees from the stage of Ramsey Auditorium, saying the lab’s future is “very strong and bright” as they focus on other experiments that fall in three frontiers of particle physics.

Oddone said the laboratory is involved in projects already under way and in the research phase that will position Fermilab in importance for the next two decades.

As Fermilab was a leader in the “energy” frontier, it will shift and be leader in the “intensity” frontier, where instead of creating particles of the highest energy, it will create the largest amount of particles, Oddone said.

“We are looking at something very elusive, neutrinos or very rare particles … that are even beyond what the Large Hadron Collider can find,” Oddone said.

Read more

In the News

Tevatron to shut down in September

From Science News, Jan. 19, 2011

Lack of funds precludes continued operation of most powerful U.S. collider

The Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory’s Tevatron will shut down by the end of September, the U.S. Department of Energy has announced, dashing hopes that the 25-year-old atom smasher in Batavia, Ill., might win a transatlantic race to find the most sought-after elementary particle in high-energy physics.

Fermilab received the news from the Department of Energy on January 10 that the agency could not come up with an annual $35 million to keep the Tevatron running until 2014. The department’s advisory panel on high energy physics had recommended that the Tevatron operate for an additional three years after the European consortium CERN announced in early 2010 that its more powerful Large Hadron Collider would close down during all of 2012 for repairs. (It’s now likely that the collider will shut down in 2013 instead, a CERN official says.)

Electrical problems had already postponed by a year the opening of the Large Hadron Collider, until the fall of 2009. That delay, along with the future year-long shutdown, had seemed to give a leg up to the Tevatron in its search for the Higgs boson, a particle whose existence would explain the origin of mass in subatomic particles.

Read more

Result of the Week

Top quarks and photons playing together

The plot shows four different measured cross sections (points) compared to the hashed lines, which are the theoretical expectation. The top three are control samples that are in excellent agreement with theory. The lower most point is the presented measurement that is also in excellent agreement with Standard Model expectation.

Physicists test the Standard Model to see if the pieces in place, or those they think might be missing, can tell them anything new. One important test is to measure the properties of when the particles collide head on. This allows physicists to study interactions at the shortest distances to see whether our observations agree with prediction.

When our results agree with the Standard Model, we gain confidence in this theory. Disagreement with the Standard Model could point to new physics. A few things that physicists look at in each physics process is whether the rates of particle production agree with prediction and whether the kinematic distributions (how the physics objects in question physically distribute themselves in the detector) behave as we expect.

In this analysis, we search for events that contain a lepton (electron or muon) with significant momentum perpendicular to the beam indicating a “head-on” type collision, a photon, and a heavy flavor jet (b-jet) and an energy imbalance hinting at a possible neutrino being present. In these searches, we check each collision to see if we observed the above quantities. To verify that we have identified our object correctly and to ensure that what we are calling a photon is actually a photon, we consider various physics control samples. In this case, one check resulted in 84 events when 86 events, with a plus or minus nine error range, were predicted by the Standard Model in excellent agreement.

An interesting subset of this search consists of a top quark plus an antitop quark pair plus a high-energy photon. Physicists predict this process is smaller by a factor of 100 than current top and antitop quark production.

There are two important ingredients to this measurement. First a lot of collisions need to take place. Second, there has to be a very clear event signature.

The Tevatron has produced many collisions (10 inverse femtobarns). This result is based on 5.7 inverse femtobarns, which is approximately 100 times the number of collisions that were necessary in Run I to discover the top quark. Now, rather than just looking for top quarks and antitop quarks produced together, we're looking for events that also contain a high-energy photon.

In this search, CDF observed 30 candidate events with this ttbar+photon signature. We expected to see 27 events ± 3. Thus, CDF scientist performed the first measurement of the ratio between top quarks produced in association with a photon to those in which only top quarks are produced. Using a nearly identical event selection between the two signals the ratio is measured to be 0.013 ± 0.005, which agrees well with the theoretical prediction of 0.010 ± 0.002.

More information.

-- edited by Andy Beretvas

First row from left: Benjamin Auerbach and Paul Tipton, Yale. Second row from left: Andrey Loginov, Yale; Henry Frisch, University of Chicago; and Irina Shreyber, ITEP/CEA Saclay, France.
Accelerator Update

Jan. 17-19

- Three stores provided ~45.25 hours of luminosity
- A network storm hit and caused some downtime

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


Oracle E Business Suite, ProCard, CNAS, SunFlower & PeopleSoft application systems unavailable on Saturday, Jan. 22

Butts & Guts class starts today

Traffic Safety Seminar - today

Toastmasters - today

Floating holiday - Kronos timecard

Jennifer Gunn (Flutist with CSO), and Fareed Haque (Guitar) in concert - Jan. 23

GSA announced 2011 standard mileage reimbursement rate

Accelerate to a Healthy Lifestyle wrap up

Lecture Series - Electrochemical Energy Storage for Transportation: Opportunities and Challenges in an Evolving Lithium Economy - Feb. 4

Project Management Introduction class - Feb. 14, 16 & 18

FRA Scholarship 2011

Open basketball at the gym

Planning & Scheduling with Primavera P6 class - Jan. 25 - 17

Disney On Ice presents Toy Story 3 - Feb. 2-13

Project Management Introduction class - Feb. 14, 16 & 18

Apply now for URA Visiting Scholars awards program deadline Feb. 18

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