Fermilab Today Monday, July 12, 2010

Have a safe day!

Monday, July 12
3:30 p.m.
4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II

Tuesday, July 13
12 p.m.
Summer Lecture Series - One West
Speaker: Brian DeGraff and Leonardo Ristori, Fermilab
Title: Civil and Mechanical Engineering
3:30 p.m.

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Current Security Status

Secon Level 3

Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, July 12
- Breakfast: Croissant sandwich
- Smart cuisine: Potato leek soup*
- Monte Cristo
- Smart cuisine: half roasted chicken*
- Alfredo tortellini
- Chicken ranch wrapper
- Assorted sliced pizza
- Szechuan style pork lo mein

*Carb-restricted alternative

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, July 14
- Chicken satay wrap
- Corn & black bean salad
- Sautéed zucchini
- Fruit skewer with cookies

Thursday, July 15
- Closed

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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New service wall honors
long-term employees

Pier Oddone unveils the new service wall, which lists names of employees who have given more than 30 years of service.

In today’s mobile work world it's an increasing rarity to find businesses where people can, or want to, work for decades.  Count Fermilab as one of those rare jewels.

The Employee Relations Department dedicated last month a plaque on the 15th floor honoring employees who have worked consistently at the laboratory for more than three decades.  So far, 548 names fill the plaque; 365 of them are current employees. 

“This is just a huge thank you to all of our employees who work so hard, and it really is a blessing that there are still places where people can reach 30 years of employment,” said Juanita Frazier, Employee Relations Department manager in WDRS.

Many employees can count even longer service to the laboratory, especially adding years worked non-consecutively or as temporary workers, a common occurrence in the laboratory's early days.

Pat Oleck of the Finance Section has spent her entire career at the laboratory. She worked periodically or as a temporary employee through Kelly Services, a staffing agency, between 1968 and 1975. She has worked full-time since 1975.

“They raised me,” she said of the laboratory community. “I was here at 18 and my family was in Tennessee. This is like my family.”  

Read more

-- Tona Kunz


Jeff Mack retires

Jeff Mack

Jeff Mack, an employee in the web, messaging and collaboration apps and internal groupware, workflow, tracking group in the Computing Division retired June 25. Mack began working at the laboratory on Dec. 15, 1971, and has since been involved in many groups and projects within the division.

Mack was head of the High Performance and Parallel Computing Department when the division moved away from operator-mounted tape operation to automated robotic tape mounts, recalled Computing Division employee Mark Fischler. Mack led early developments of tools that let experiments organize their tape data and specify mount requests to (in those days) a combination of operators and tape robots.

Under Mack's leadership, the department also improved the software for experimenters that allows them to use computing farms for event reconstruction. He also delved into the use of databases in conjunction with data analysis.

“Jeff was very dedicated to his work,” said Computing Division employee Gerry Bellendir, who worked with Mack for many years. “He often brought a much needed critical eye to important projects. He was a friend as well as a coworker, and I will miss him.”

--Marcia Teckenbrock

In the News

Dark matter may be building up inside the sun

From Wired Science Blog, July 9, 2010

The sun could be a net for dark matter, a new study suggests. If dark matter happens to take a certain specific form, it could build up in our nearest star and alter how heat moves inside it in a way that would be observable from Earth.

Dark matter is the mysterious stuff that makes up 80 percent of the matter in the universe, but doesn't interact with electromagnetic forces. Although the universe contains five times as much dark matter as normal matter, dark matter is completely invisible both to human eyes and every kind of telescope ever devised. Physicists only know it's there because of its gravitational effect on normal matter. Dark matter keeps galaxies spinning quickly without flying apart and is responsible for much of the large-scale structure in the universe.

Read more

In the News

X-rays reveal origin of Dead Sea Scroll

From physicsworld.com, July 9, 2010

Physicists in Italy have provided further clues as to the origin of the Dead Sea Scrolls using a new method that relies on emissions from a radioactive source. The portable technique, known as XPIXE, could be used to complement analyses of ancient artefacts currently carried out at particle accelerators.

PIXE - particle-induced X-ray emission - involves firing protons at a sample and then measuring the X-rays emitted by specific elements excited within the material, with the energy of the X-rays identifying the elements in question. First proposed in the 1970s, PIXE has undergone several developments but in general requires a particle accelerator.

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ES&H Tips of the Week -
Computer Security

Looking for the bad guy's needle in a data haystack

Finding evidence of computer crime can be like looking for a needle in a haystack, as seen in this image from the Fermilab Education Office website.

When the laboratory has a computer security incident, the incident response and computer security teams must dig through mountains of data. How do they find the little bits that lead to the tracks that the bad guy left behind?

It's a proverbial needle in a haystack. The Splunk software system can help find it.

Computer system managers give the teams the machines' log files before an incident happens. By adding those files to the Splunk software system, the teams can determine the machines' normal behavior. The teams can get a virtual picture of the existing data haystack they would need to search through in the event of trouble.

The system, which can add some 200 gigabytes a day, only shows computer security personnel what they want to see.

This allows them to detect abnormalities. Early detection of suspicious computer activity lets the teams remove suspect computers from the network, containing the damage more quickly.

All laboratory devices are subject to potential security incidents. By using Splunk, computer security personnel can detect the targets of malicious activity to assess the biggest risks, limit them and help contain problems quickly.

-- Tim Rupp, computer security staff

A screen snapshot of some of the information Splunk provides about log files.


Safety Tip of the Week Archive



Alessandro Ruggiero, an accelerator physicist who worked at Fermilab's Antiproton Source between 1970 and 1984 in the 1980s, died on June 26.

Dennis Theriot, who retired from Fermilab as associate director of technology in 1993, died July 5, 2010. Check Fermilab Today later this week for an In Memoriam. Read his obituary.

Wilson Cross of Fermilab's Cryogenics Department died on June 25 at the age of 55. He had served as a laboratory employee for 30 years. Check Fermilab Today later this week for an In Memoriam. Read his obituary.

Accelerator Update

July 7-9

- Four stores provided ~39 hours of luminosity
- Main Injector personnel conducted slow spill studies
- TeV conducts 3x3 study store (7958)
- Main Injector and MINERvA personnel conducted neutrino communications study
- Switchyard power supply repaired
- P-bar Debuncher bend bus current drop
- NuMI shutdown begins 7/12/10

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


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Sons of the Never Wrong - July 24 - 8 p.m

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All supervisors: Do you need help preparing for performance reviews?

Time to complete accomplishment reports

10,000 Steps-a-Day walking program

Introduction to LabVIEW course - July 13

Embedded Design with LabVIEW FPGA and CompactRIO seminar - July 13

Interaction Management coaching forum - July 27

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