Monday, April 1, 2013

Have a safe day!

Monday, April 1


3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II
Special Topics: MICE Status/Progress; Liquid-Argon Purity Demonstrator Progress

Tuesday, April 2

3:30 p.m.


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a weekly calendar with links to additional information.

Ongoing and upcoming conferences at Fermilab


Take Five

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Current Security Status

Secon Level 3

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Flags at full staff

Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, April 1

- Breakfast: blueberry pancakes
- Vegetarian potato leeks
- Sloppy joe
- Chicken curry
- Smart cuisine: pasta primavera
- Oven-roasted veggie wrap
- Assorted pizza by the slice
- Shrimp and crab scampi

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, April 3
- Pan-seared cod with basil sauce
- Sautéed spinach
- Orzo
- Lemon Neapolitan

Friday, April 5
- Field greens with walnuts, dried cranberries and blue cheese
- Filet mignon with porcini sauce
- Grilled asparagus
- Strawberry crepes

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


Fermilab Today

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Tip of the Week

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Special Announcement

April Fool

We hope that the 9 a.m. edition of Fermilab Today made you laugh! Here is the real issue. (Really.)


High-field magnets poised to get an upgrade

A 2-meter-long superconducting coil filled with Matrimid® has been shown to be able to stand up to extreme operating environments. Photo: Sarah Khan

Recently the Technical Division's High Field Magnet Group identified and tested a new insulating compound that could help superconducting magnets survive under the harsh conditions of many future accelerator projects.

The new component, called Matrimid® and manufactured by the company Huntsman, can last longer and resist radiation better than the traditional epoxy-based insulation used for magnet coils.

Recently, engineer Steve Krave and lead engineer Rodger Bossert produced 1- and 2-meter long superconducting coils filled with Matrimid. Tests have shown that the new insulation holds up well to extreme fabrication and operating environments.

"These results are very exciting," said Alexander Zlobin, head of the high-field magnet program. "This technological development will have a great impact on our field."

Started in 1998, the program aims in part to create niobium-tin magnets that produce very large magnetic fields at very low temperatures. Such magnets have applications in the LHC upgrade and could also be used in a linear collider, a neutrino factory or a muon collider.

"The magnet coils are subjected to high mechanical stresses, extreme temperatures and large amounts of radiation, which, over time, shortens the magnet's life," Zlobin said. "Materials and performance often degrade in a few years, too short a time for many accelerator applications."

The group is specifically concerned about the epoxy used to insulate the turns in niobium-tin superconducting magnets and give the coils a stiff structure.

While operating in high-radiation environments and at very low temperatures, the epoxy is usually the first material to break down.

Degrading magnets lose field strength, and when serving an experiment, that means less data. This poses problems for projects such as the upgraded LHC, which scientists believe will deliver 10 times more data than it did previously, Zlobin said.

The group estimates that Matrimid, an epoxy-like component, can extend magnet life to five or more years.

Matrimid is a dark amber substance normally used in the aerospace industry because it can withstand high temperatures, pressures and radiation. The group realized 10 years ago that the material could also work for superconducting magnet coils.

Since then, they've been studying how to get the finicky material into the coils.

"You have to impregnate the coil quickly, but to do that, you have to heat Matrimid to high temperatures, which could damage other parts of the coil," Krave said. "Additionally, impregnating a coil too quickly could yield bubbles and gaps during curing, which would hamper the magnet's performance. We looked at all of these different variables and tried to find a process that worked."

The recent successful tests with the 1- and 2-meter coils means the group can continue refining the production process to work on longer coils of 6 or more meters, Bossert said.

"This is really a breakthrough," Zlobin said. "We are not just talking about ideas, but real magnet performance."

Sarah Khan

This shows a cross-section of superconducting wires stacked on top of each other. In between the wires is the insulating component Matrimid. Photo: Marianne Bossert, TD

In the News

Not yet complete, Minnesota physics lab captures images of subatomic particles

From Duluth News Tribune, March 28, 2013

A northern Minnesota physics laboratory yet to be completed already has reached a significant milestone.

The first finished section of the NuMI Off-Axis Electron Neutrino Appearance far detector near Ash River has recorded its first three-dimensional images of a subatomic particle producing a shower of energy as it passed through the detector.

Read more

Tip of the Week: Cybersecuity

Spam, spam, eggs and spam

Beware of spam and phishing attempts. Never give anyone your user name or password. Fermilab service providers will never ask you for this information.

Fermilab e-mail accounts are frequent targets for spam, especially phishing attempts that try to convince careless users to reveal information such as user names and passwords about themselves to attackers. Last week many laboratory users were on the receiving end of a phishing attack, so it is timely to remind users of a few precautions.

Many of us received e-mail last Thursday with the subject


The sender purported to be


The message said your e-mail would be turned off unless you sent details of your account, including user name and password, to the reply address


This message illustrates a couple of issues common to this type of phishing attacks:

  • You can never trust who your e-mail says it is from. Any mail user can put any address he or she wants in the From field. If you look carefully at the header of this e-mail example, you can see that it is coming from, not from any systems associated with Fermilab. See below about measures being taken to help avoid this.
  • No service providers at Fermilab will EVER ask you to tell them your password, nor would they EVER ask you to send any information to a Gmail mailing address. If any service providers at Fermilab need to contact you, they will do so through the Fermilab Service Desk, and any action on your part will involve opening or modifying a ServiceNow service ticket.

Many lab users reported this e-mail to computer security or opened service desk tickets. This is a great indicator that people are paying attention and taking these security risks seriously. We are not aware of anyone who revealed his or her password, but, as always, we will be watching for improper use of our e-mail system. We are also in the process of instituting measures that prevent forged e-mail messages like this from being delivered to lab recipients. In the meantime, learn more about Fermilab's anti-spam procedures, including links to instructions for reporting spam, in this ServiceNow Knowledge base article.

Irwin Gaines

Photo of the Day

Fire in the sky

The sky above Lab A and the old bubble chamber building blazed brightly early morning last week. Photo: David Butler, PPD

Today's New Announcements

Digital certificate doctor-is-in booth - April 3

Web queries security changes - April 3

April - Fermilab Heartland Blood Drive - April 15-16

UChicago: Willy Wonka - movie and science demos - April 21

Free Zumba trial classes

Martial arts class - begins today

Nominations open for 2013 Tollestrup Postdoc Award - through today

Hiring managers: submit summer personnel requisitions by April 12

C2ST: Chemical Innovations: Molecular Modeling - April 3

Garden Club spring meeting - April 3

The World According to Higgs - Chris Quigg - April 12

Fermilab Arts Series: Barynya: Music & Dance of Russia - April 20

Reminder - FSA debit card PIN required

2013 Fermilab Heartland Blood Drives - upcoming dates

Walk 2 Run

International folk dancing meets Thursday evenings in Kuhn Barn

Monday golf league