Monday, Feb. 3, 2014

Have a safe day!

Monday, Feb. 3

8 a.m-6:30 p.m.
LBNE Collaboration Meeting
See website for agenda and details

2:30 p.m.
Particle Astrophysics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: Daniel Grin, University of Chicago
Title: Some New Isocurvature Directions

3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II

Tuesday, Feb. 4

9 a.m-5:30 p.m.
LBNE Collaboration Meeting
See website for agenda and details

10:30 a.m.
Research Techniques Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: Serge Oktyabrsky, SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering
Title: Picosecond Photodetectors: What Can We Adopt from the Modern III-V Semiconductor Technologies?

3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
Accelerator Physics and Technology Seminar - One West
Speaker: Bill Pellico and Bob Zwaska, Fermilab
Title: Proton Improvement Plan — Meeting the HEP Proton Needs

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

Ongoing and upcoming conferences at Fermilab


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Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, Feb. 3

- Breakfast: blueberry pancakes
- Breakfast: sausage, egg and cheese croissant
- Sloppy joe
- Smart cuisine: Italian vegetable bake
- Chicken curry
- Oven-roasted vegetable wrap
- Shrimp and crab scampi
- Vegetarian cream of spinach
- Texas-style chili

Wilson Hall Cafe menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Feb. 5
- Chicken roulade with herbed cheese
- Spinach orzo
- Swedish apple pie

Friday, Feb. 7
- Spinach salad with cranberries and pine nuts
- Flank steak with caramelized onions and balsamic glaze
- Walnut-crusted potato and blue cheese cakes
- Brussels sprouts
- Profiteroles au chocolat

Chez Leon menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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From symmetry

Watch the next big neutrino experiment come together

A video on the construction of the NOvA experiment highlights some of the many steps needed to build the largest neutrino experiment in the United States. Photo: Reidar Hahn

Coordinating the construction of an international particle physics experiment is never an easy task.

This is indeed the case for NOvA, a US-based physics experiment that studies a beam of hard-to-catch particles sent an unprecedented 500 miles through the Earth toward a 14,000-ton particle detector. Building the experiment has required harmonizing the efforts of several dozen laboratories, universities and companies from the United States, Brazil, the Czech Republic, Greece, India, Japan, Russia and the United Kingdom.

"It sinks in," says John Perko, a construction technician at the NOvA facility in Ash River, Minnesota, in a new video about the process of building the NOvA detector. "It makes you feel that the whole world's watching."

The scientists on the NOvA collaboration have come together to study neutrinos, particles that are abundant in nature but that physicists still don't quite understand. They are mysteriously lightweight, leading physicists to wonder if something other than the Higgs boson gives them their masses. Neutrinos come in three types, and they morph from one to another. Scientists think they might hold clues to what caused the imbalance between matter and antimatter in our universe.

To study these elusive particles, scientists on the NOvA collaboration designed a set of two detectors — a 300-ton one located near the source of the neutrino beam and a 14,000-ton one located in Ash River, Minnesota.

Fermilab recently posted a video highlighting some of the many steps required to build these detectors, from extruding 50-foot-long plastic tubes at a company in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, to assembling them into modules at a facility staffed by students at the University of Minnesota, to putting together the world's largest free-standing plastic structure.

"I'm familiar with all the neutrino projects that are going on, and getting to actually be a part of one of those projects is pretty exciting," University of Minnesota physics student Nicole Olsen says in the video.

Workers are scheduled to finish building the detectors this spring, and they plan to finish outfitting them with electronics in the summer. They have already begun to take data with portions of the experiment, and their capabilities will only improve as they get closer to completing construction.

View the video

Kathryn Jepsen

Photos of the Day

Acqua fredda alle funi

The obelisk "Acqua Alle Funi," ("water to the ropes") rises toward the sky. Photo: Steve Krave, TD
It appears to crack through the ice of the pond in front of Wilson Hall. Photo: Steve Krave, TD
In the News

Magnetic monopoles seen in the lab

From Physics World, Jan. 30, 2014

An analogue of a long-sought-after particle comprising an isolated magnetic pole has been observed by physicists in the US and Finland. "Magnetic monopoles" were predicted by Paul Dirac in 1931 but have never been seen in nature. This latest work does not prove whether or not the unusual particles exist, rather it shows that a physical system described by the underlying mathematics can be created in the lab. The research could also help physicists to gain a better understanding of exotic materials such as superconductors, and even create materials with new and useful properties.

Magnetic poles are always seen in pairs, no matter how small the magnet. An ordinary bar magnet consists of both a north and a south pole; if the magnet is cut in two, then each of the resulting halves will also be bipolar. In fact, no matter how many times the magnet is divided, the north and south poles remain coupled — even as far down as individual atoms, which themselves act like tiny magnets. This is reflected in Maxell's equations, which say that isolated positive and negative electric charges exist but isolated magnetic charges do not.

Read more

Tip of the Week: Safety

New Illinois law bans hand-held cell phone use while driving

Driving while using your cell phone on Fermilab grounds is a traffic violation. Be safe: Don't let yourself be distracted while driving.

A new Illinois state law permits the use of some electronic devices while driving, but here at Fermilab the rules are stricter.

While texting and driving is illegal, as of Jan. 1, 2014, House Bill 1247, PA 98-0506 states that chatting on a hand-held cell phone while driving is now also a traffic violation in the state of Illinois. A person caught violating this law will be fined a maximum of $75 for a first offense, $100 for a second offense, $125 for a third offense and $150 for a fourth or subsequent offense. Offenders could also face having a moving violation on their driving records.

What is allowed in Illinois.
Devices that are still allowed while driving in the state include:

  1. hands-free headsets.
  2. speaker phone systems built into car stereos.
  3. mounted cell phone that allows a driver to use the speaker function without holding it.
  4. calls on hand-held phones in emergency situations.

What is not allowed in Illinois:
Drivers under the age of 19 are prohibited from any cell phone usage while driving except in emergency situations.

What is not allowed at Fermilab:
It is a violation of FESHM Chapter 9010, section 5.2 to use any type of electrical device while driving at Fermilab. Exceptions include:

  1. use of electronic communication devices while performing official duties in an emergency vehicle.
  2. two-way radios provided by the laboratory for official business.
  3. two-way mobile radio transmitters or receivers used by licensees of the Federal Communications Commission in the amateur radio service.

Don't wait to be pulled over by law enforcement or for a crash. Let's all take the pledge to drive cell-free and encourage others to do the same.

For more information on the state ban on cell phones usage while operating a motor vehicle, visit the Illinois Rules of the Road.

J.B. Dawson

In Brief

Lunch and Learn: tips for being greener with SCARCE - Feb. 5 in Curia II

Reduce, reuse, recycle. We hear the mantra all the time, and many of us are good about pitching our recyclables into the right bin, but what are other simple ways we can be greener?

On Wednesday, Feb. 5, at noon in Curia II, Kay McKeen of SCARCE (School and Community Assistance for Recycling and Composting Education) will lead a Lunch and Learn talk on the easy things we can do to lead more environmentally conscious lives.

McKeen is an expert in recycling drives, repurposing materials and green education. She will discuss her experience at SCARCE, give valuable tips about how we can reuse objects that only appear to have outlived their usefulness and share resources that can help our community be more green.

Feel free to bring a bag lunch.

For more information, contact Lucy Nobrega at x6837.

In the News

Particle Fever: Filming the hunt for the Higgs boson

From Physics Today, January 2014

For physicists, the startup of the Large Hadron Collider meant that theories developed over decades would finally be tested. In anticipation, David Kaplan, a theorist at the Johns Hopkins University, decided that somebody needed to record the historic events. He ended up devoting the next seven years to Particle Fever, a 99-minute narrative documentary, which opens on March 5 at the Film Forum in New York City.

Read more


Today's New Announcements

All-hands meeting - Feb. 6

P5 virtual town hall meeting - Feb. 6

NALWO crepe cooking demo - today

Free introductory yoga classes - today and Feb. 6

Lunch and Learn: Resources to be more green with SCARCE - Feb. 5

Artist reception for Jay Strommen - Feb. 7

Family Science Days in Chicago - Feb. 15-16

URA Visiting Scholars Program deadline - Feb. 24

Interpersonal Communication Skills - Apr. 16

Sign up for new emergency messaging system

Fermi Singers invites new members

Strength Training by Bod Squad

Indoor soccer

Scottish country dancing meets Tuesday evenings at Kuhn Barn

International folk dancing meets Thursday evenings at Kuhn Barn

10 percent employee discount at North Aurora Dental Associates