Monday, Dec. 9, 2013

Have a safe day!

Monday, Dec. 9

2:30 p.m.
Particle Astrophysics Seminar (NOTE LOCATION) - One East
Speaker: Joseph Lazio, California Institute of Technology
Title: Rediscovering the Radio Transient Sky

3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting (NOTE LOCATION) - One West

Tuesday, Dec. 10

11 a.m.
Academic Lecture Series - One West
Speaker: Scott Dodelson
Title: Evidence for Dark Matter from the Cosmos

3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
Accelerator Physics and Technology Seminar - One West
Speaker: Igor Meshkov, Joint Institute of Nuclear Research
Title: NICA Project Development at JINR

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 half staff

Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, Dec. 9

- Breakfast: blueberry pancakes
- Breakfast: sausage, egg and cheese croissant
- Sloppy joe
- Smart cuisine: pasta primavera
- Chicken curry
- Oven-roasted vegetable wrap
- Shrimp and crab scampi
- Vegetarian potato leek soup
- Texas-style chili

Wilson Hall Cafe menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Dec. 11
- Stuffed cabbage
- Mashed potatoes
- German chocolate cake

Saturday, Dec. 14
Guest chef: Grace Leonard
- Assortment of small plates, tapas style

Chez Leon menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Bill Gatfield, Technical Division welder

Bill Gatfield burns 9.11-inch steel for the MINOS beam absorber. Photo courtesy of Bill Gatfield

How long have you been working at Fermilab?
In March it will be 35 years. I started out in the Village machine shop as a welder, and I've been doing that ever since. I've been welding all my working life.

What is a typical day for you like?
It varies. It can be physical — moving equipment, welding, climbing ladders. It can also be intricate. There are a variety of welding procedures, and I do just about all of them.

What is your favorite part of the job?
The large variety of work; everything changes. Also, being around different people. I've been all over the site and I've met more people than the names I can remember. It's the people you work around that can make it hard or easy for you. So often the people I work around have bent over backwards to make things easier for me. They are very talented people.

What is the biggest challenge of your job?
The equipment around here is very expensive, and often it's one of a kind, so you can't make mistakes; you need to get it right the first time. I'd say the worst thing I can do out here is make a mistake — not only for the lab, but it bothers me, too.

What are your hobbies outside of work?
I started doing welded artwork during trade school, in 1970 and '71. I went to Hobart Institute of Welding Technology in Troy, Ohio. While I was learning the many facets of welding, I had some spare time on my hands, so my instructor let me use scrap materials they had lying around to make small pieces of art, such as sculptures of birds.

How often do you make a sculpture?
Some of my sculptures have taken 10 years because I do a little bit at a time. It takes a lot of thinking, some failures. One I had displayed out here, the "Great Eastern," took about 10 years, but I've had others that took half that time. Lots of times I end up going backwards more than forward, but I eventually get something made. I have the idea, and then sometimes I lie awake at night thinking, "What would be a good way to approach this?" In a way that's kind of how the lab runs because you really need to think about how you are going to approach a job before you do it.

Sarah Witman

If there is an employee you'd like to see profiled in an upcoming issue of Fermilab Today, please email

Photo of the Day

Friday night lights

Visitor Gordon Garcia took this photo of a sunset over Fermilab on Friday, Nov. 30. Venus is visible above Wilson Hall. Photo: Gordon Garcia
From symmetry

U.S. particle physicists look to space

The P5 panel held a meeting at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory to look for promising routes to the study of dark matter, dark energy and other phenomena. Photo: Brad Plummer, SLAC

[Last] week, about 150 particle physicists gathered at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory to explore the future of particle physics with a special focus on topics connecting particle physics, cosmology and astrophysics.

By venturing far out into the universe and far back in time, particle physicists study two of science's most intriguing puzzles: dark matter and dark energy. At present both phenomena can be seen on cosmic scales: Astrophysicists have observed dark matter interacting gravitationally with ordinary matter and have seen the growing influence of dark energy on the expansion rate of the universe. Yet very little is known about dark matter and dark energy other than that they exist. What are they made of? Where do they come from? How do they interact with other known particles and forces? So far, their discovery has led to more questions than answers.

The researchers came at the invitation of the Particle Physics Project Prioritization Panel, or P5. The panel, charged with mapping the course of U.S. particle physics research for the next two decades in a global context, is busy gathering information about which avenues of research currently offer the most promise for scientific advancement. Their work builds on the year-long Snowmass process, taking the results from the final meeting last summer and distilling them into a series of recommendations for prioritization of high-energy physics research. This information-gathering stage has already begun. At a Fermilab meeting in November, they discussed Snowmass results, activities in particle physics around the world and neutrino research. An upcoming meeting at Brookhaven later this month will focus on future accelerator-based experiments.

Read more

Lori Ann White

Tip of the Week: Safety

Keep the holidays fun and safe

Can you guess what's wrong in this picture?

The holiday season brings many joys, such as family gatherings and festive decorations. However, it also brings hazards. Flickering candles, blinking lights and fragrant evergreens are beautiful staples of the holiday season, but when used improperly, these holiday decorations can pose dangers.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, each year during the winter holiday season, about 11,000 people are treated in emergency rooms because of decoration-related injuries, with falls, cuts, shocks and burns topping the list. The National Fire Protection Association estimates that each year an average of 240 fires involving dried-out Christmas trees result in 16 deaths and $13 million in property damage. Deaths, injuries and property loss are preventable if we follow a few holiday safety tips:

Ladder safety

  • Use ladders with slip-resistant feet, and wear clean, dry and slip-resistant shoes.
  • When putting up holiday decorations, always use the proper stepstool or a ladder to reach high places. Don't stand on chairs, desks or furniture.
  • Do not stand on a ladder step that is higher than the indicated highest standing level.
  • If you have to use a stepladder near a doorway, lock or barricade the door, and post signs so no one will open it and knock you off.
  • Place a straight or extension ladder one foot away from the surface against which it rests for every four feet of ladder height.
  • When you climb, always face the ladder and grip the rungs, not the side rails, to climb.
  • Keep three points of contact on the ladder — two hands and one foot or two feet and one hand.
  • When climbing, keep your hips between the side rails, and do not lean too far or overreach. Reposition the ladder closer to the work instead.
  • When using ladders outdoors, get down immediately if high winds, rain, snow or other inclement weather begins.

Electrical and fire safety

  • Decorate with non-combustible or flame-resistant materials.
  • Ensure that you are clear of overhead power lines while decorating.
  • Check for frayed wires, broken sockets or loose connections.
  • Check labels to be sure of the proper use of indoor and outdoor lights.
  • Don't overload electrical outlets.
  • If using a real tree, fill the stand with water to keep the tree from drying out.
  • If using an artificial tree, make sure it is labeled "fire-resistant." Place trees away from fireplaces, radiators and portable heaters.
  • If you use a fireplace or candles, always ensure there is a working fire extinguisher available and that everyone knows how to use it.
  • Never position lighted candles near trees, boughs, curtains, drapes, children, pets, gift wrapping or anything combustible or flammable.

View this video for more information.

Happy Holidays!

J.B. Dawson

Video of the Day

Big questions: dark matter

Scientists think that, in addition to the type of matter with which we are familiar, there is another kind of matter, called dark matter, that appears to be five times as plentiful as ordinary matter. Scientists are searching through their data to look for additional evidence that supports the dark matter idea. US CMS Education and Outreach Coordinator Don Lincoln tells us why this seemingly crazy idea might not be so crazy. View the video. Video: Fermilab
In the News

What's dark matter? Find out about the new frontiers of physics

From NBC News, Dec. 4, 2013

Now that physicists have found the Higgs boson, what's next? One of the most successful theories in science, the Standard Model of particle physics, seems to be complete. But what lies beyond the Standard Model? While we wait for Europe's Large Hadron Collider to start up again, there are plenty of other mysteries to explore — and the nature of dark matter looks like one of the most promising frontiers.

Read more


Today's New Announcements

Preventing Diabetes Lunch & Learn - Dec. 11

NALWO winter coffee - today

Certified Administrative Professional Study Group reg. deadline - Dec. 10

Fermilab Family Holiday Party - Dec. 11

Wilson Hall Super Science Stocking Stuffer Sale - Dec. 11-12

Fermilab Arts Series: Jingle Babes: Four Bitchin' Babes - Dec. 14

Scottish country dancing Tuesday evenings in Kuhn Barn - until Dec. 17

Revised submission date for the Take Five 2013 Challenge - Dec. 18

Wilson Street entrance closed

Cashier's Office closed during holidays

Box office moves to the mezzanine

Strength Training by Bod Squad

International folk dancing meets Thursday evenings in Kuhn Barn

Abri Credit Union – rake in the savings