Monday, Aug. 26, 2013

Have a safe day!

Monday, Aug. 26


3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II
Special Topic: Report from ASTA Users Meeting

Tuesday, Aug. 27

3:30 p.m.


Click here for NALCAL,
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, Aug. 26

- Breakfast: oatmeal raisin pancakes
- Breakfast: sausage, egg and cheese croissant
- Fermi burger
- Smart cuisine: country baked chicken
- Veal parmesan
- Classic club sandwich
- Buffalo chicken salad
- Chicken and sausage gumbo
- Texas-style chili
- Assorted pizza by the slice

Wilson Hall Cafe menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Aug. 28
- Assorted stuffed summer vegetables
- Gourmet greens with herb vinaigrette
- Buttered crepes with caramel and pecans

Friday, Aug. 30

Chez Leon menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


Fermilab Today

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Frontier Science Result

Physics in a Nutshell

Tip of the Week

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The coyote effect

The coyote population at Fermilab has recently plateaued after a steady 15-year increase. Photo: Marty Murphy, AD

In the 1990s, Fermilab Lead Groundskeeper Jim Kalina would often get called upon to remove a raccoon that had taken up residence above the ceiling of a laboratory building.

"I would have to crawl around in the buildings, up in the attics, trying to get the raccoons out," he said. "But now with the coyotes, we rarely have that problem."

The coyote population at Fermilab has steadily increased since 1998, Kalina said, though it has plateaued of late, since predator populations tend to limit themselves. Since the '90s, there's also been a correlated drop at the lab in populations of foxes, opossums, raccoons and squirrels. Even the geese population has shrunk, though their smarter nesting habits—laying eggs near places that humans frequent and away from places coyotes can get to—keep them highly visible.

Whether the uptick in coyote numbers is good or bad news for the ecology of Fermilab's 6,800 acres of prairie depends on the view you take.

"We have to remember the complexity of the whole thing, the ecosystem," said scientist Peter Kasper, AD, who monitors the bird population at the laboratory. "One small change can have domino effects all over the place, in all sorts of surprising ways."

For Fermilab's Roads and Grounds crew, the coyotes have been a positive influence. Far fewer woodchucks, for example, are around to chew on the bison pasture fence posts or to burrow through the berms that shield the accelerator tunnels.

"I used to be a hunter," Kalina said. "I hated foxes and coyotes going after game. But I learned that they're an essential part of the ecosystem."

At the same time, with the decline of rodents and other prey in the cold seasons, predatory birds that used to winter at Fermilab, such as the short-eared owl and rough-legged hawk, are an increasingly rare sight as well.

"Coyotes come in and can change the balance," Kasper said. "Bird populations today are not the same as what they were before."

Since Roads and Grounds began keeping electronic records of wildlife incidents, the rodent population is at a low, which means that, for now, it's unlikely that the established coyote population will allow additional coyotes on site.

"Coyotes don't kill other coyotes, they just let others know they don't belong there," Kalina said, noting that roughly 30 pairs of coyotes currently inhabit the lab grounds.

So where were the coyotes 20 years ago, when nary a one was to be seen at the lab? A hard-hitting sarcoptic mange epidemic in the northern Illinois region routed them, said Fermilab Ecologist Rod Walton.

Who can predict what the lab's ecosystem will be like 20 years from now?

Leah Hesla

The decline of the rough-legged hawk population at the lab is likely due to the reduction in prey populations. Photo: Dave Spleha
Photos of the Day

Butterflies near Pine Street

A Great Spangled Fritillary alights on a flower near Pine Street. Photo: Barb Kristen, PPD
Another butterfly, the Common Buckeye, settles on the pavement. Photo: Barb Kristen, PPD
From symmetry

Japan selects candidate site for linear collider

A site evaluation committee has recommended a location for the proposed International Linear Collider, if it is built in Japan. Image: Linear Collider Collaboration

In a press conference this morning, the Japanese high-energy physics community's site evaluation committee for the proposed International Linear Collider announced its recommendation: If the 19-mile-long, next-generation particle collider is built in Japan, it should be located in the Kitakami mountains of the Iwate and Miyagi prefectures.

The ILC, considered a next step after the Large Hadron Collider, would accelerate and collide electrons and their antiparticles, positrons, at an energy of 500 billion electronvolts. The clean collisions of these elementary particles could reveal information obscured in the complexity of collisions between composite particles—protons, which are made up of quarks and gluons—in the LHC.

The ILC site evaluation committee of Japan made its choice following a careful evaluation of two finalist candidate sites: the Kitakami mountains and the Sefuri mountains of the Saga and Fukuoka prefectures. The decision was made based on the sites’ geology, infrastructure and ability to support the thousands of researchers who would move to the area.

Read more

Kelen Tuttle and Kathryn Jepsen

Tip of the Week: Cybersecurity

Staying safe on the Web

If you're accessing the Web via Fermilab's network, your browser will alert you if you are navigating to a dangerous site. Image: Reidar Hahn, Fermilab

The Internet these days is a dangerous place, especially when you're surfing the Web, where a single click on the wrong link can infect your computer with viruses or malicious spyware or adware. You should always be wary when you’re on the Web.

The Fermilab computer security team operates services that provide some protection. First, each time you attempt to access the Web using the Fermilab network, the request goes through a Web proxy server. The proxy server looks at the website you are trying to visit and compares it with a constantly updated list of dangerous websites. If the site you are visiting is not on the list, the Web content is sent to your browser automatically. However, if the site is on the list, one of several actions to prevent infection takes place.

For the most dangerous or forbidden sites, your browser will display a message that access to that website is blocked. If there is a business case that requires you to visit the site, you can submit a service desk request to remove the site from the list, but, to protect the network, it is unlikely to be fulfilled.

For other sites, your browser will display a warning explaining why it is a bad idea for you to visit the site in question. In these cases you can click past the warning, but you should be aware that such actions are logged and that taking them is risky.

Even sites that you visit regularly can begin to appear on the list of dangerous sites as content, links, advertisements and other aspects of the site change. Attackers frequently plant malicious content on the most widely visited sites to propagate infections.

We recently began scanning content even from websites not on the “dangerous" list. Since we began doing this earlier this summer, we have prevented the download of hundreds of viruses that previously would have triggered alerts from desktop virus scanning and required assistance from the desktop support team.

What does this mean for you? First, heed our warnings, and use extreme caution when you click through to a dangerous site. In most cases, doing so will result in infection that could require your computer to be cleared of all content and the operating system to be reinstalled. Second, remember that when you are away from the Fermilab network, you will not be getting the benefit of these warnings and protections and your device can easily be infected. If using a mobile device, you could then carry this infection into the laboratory.

Irwin Gaines



Minnie Koch

After 23 years, Minnie Koch (ESH&Q Section) is retiring to spend more time with family and to winter in Myrtle Beach.

Her last day is Aug. 30, and there will be a cake and coffee reception for her on Tuesday, Aug. 27, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. on WH 7E. Please stop by and wish her well.


New employees - August

The following regular employees started at Fermilab in August:

Anthony Donzelli, CS; Christopher Greer, ESH&Q; Sharan Kalwani, SCD; Francis Leavell, DO; Julie Marsh, CS; Gabriel Perdue, SCD; Michael Warren, CCD; Krishna Yarrapragada, CCD; Ran Zhou, PPD.

Fermilab welcomes them to the laboratory.

In the News

Why does particle physics matter?

From Starts with a bang, Aug. 20, 2013

Editor's note: This article summarizes several of the videos in symmetry's "Why particle physics matters" contest.

The Universe is a remarkable place, full of wonder on scales large, small, and everywhere in between.

What we learn about those scales isn’t limited by our curiosity; history has proven pretty solidly that so long as there are unexplained phenomena or unanswered questions, people will try and find the best explanations and answers. Even when we have good ones, we’ll always be searching for simpler, more elegant, and more complete solutions.

Read more

Special Announcement

Final day to participate in GreenRide drawing

Today is the last day to sign up for the GreenRide Connect rideshare initiative and be eligible to win a $100 gas gift card.

GreenRide Connect, a website run by Argonne National Laboratory, allows you to find coworkers with similar commutes with whom you might carpool. You can also use the site to track your cost savings and greenhouse gas emission reductions, however you get to work.

Participating drivers will have the opportunity to use designated parking spots close to Wilson Hall. Sign up through the site or through Fermilab’s Sustainability website.


Accelerate to a Healthy Lifestyle

Walk 2 Run starts Aug. 22

Applications due Aug. 26: URA Visiting Scholars Program

Earned Value Management course scheduled for Aug. 28, 29

NALWO Aug. 29

Life on Mars - Fermilab Lecture Series - Sept. 13

Sign up for a GreenRide and cash in

Zumba Fitness and Zumba Toning coming soon

Scottish country dancing meets Tuesday evenings in Auditorium

International folk dancing in Auditorium for summer