Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Have a safe day!

Tuesday, April 12
3:30 p.m.
4 p.m.
Accelerator Physics and Technology Seminar - One West
Speaker: Edward Nissen, Northern Illinois University
Title: Differential Algebraic Methods for Space Charge Modeling and Applications to the University of Maryland Electron Ring

Wednesday, April 13
3:30 p.m.

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Secon Level 3

Wilson Hall Cafe

Tuesday, April 12

- Bagel sandwich
- Tomato bisque soup
- Lemon pepper club
- Beef fajitas
- *Korean garlic chicken
- Grilled chicken Caesar salad wrap
- Assorted sliced pizza
- Rio Grande taco salad

*Heart healthy option

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, April 13

- Chili chicken skewers with cilantro pesto
- Chunky banana sweet-potato mash
- Key lime tequila pie

Friday, April 15
- Closed

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Special Announcement

Budget update

This morning the House Appropriations Committee unveiled details of the final budget legislation for Fiscal Year 2011. The legislation would reduce funding for the Office of Science by a total of $35 million from the enacted FY10 budget, and $252 million from the President’s request for FY11. These proposed reductions are far less than the $1.1 billion cut from the President’s FY11 budget proposed earlier this year. The legislation must still be passed by Congress, and then the DOE Office of Science will make allocations to its various programs. It may yet be some time before we know the specifics of Fermilab's final FY11 budget.


A potential energy application of Project X

View this animation to see how Fermilab's Project X would be integrated into the laboratory's Accelerator Complex.

According to the Nuclear Energy Institute, U.S. nuclear power plants have produced roughly 70,000 tons of radioactive waste over the last four decades. By 2025, scientists expect the amount of wa ste to be roughly 100,000 tons. The nuclear industry faces an ever-increasing waste problem, and Fermilab’s proposed Project X is developing the technologies that may contribute to a solution.

Last week at AccApp’11, an accelerator applications conference hosted by the American Nuclear Society and the International Atomic Energy Agency, Fermilab’s David Johnson explained how Project X could demonstrate the technologies required for accelerator-driven nuclear waste treatments.

“Fermilab has proposed the construction of a high-power proton linac for support of our high-energy physics program, and we are exploring the possibility to expand the application of the project to nuclear physics and energy applications,” Johnson said.

Project X is a proposed high-intensity proton accelerator complex that would support experiments in neutrino and rare processes physics. By using highly efficient superconducting radio frequency cavities, the technology of choice for next-generation accelerators, Project X would create a continuous-wave beam of protons. While the Project X mission is focused on particle physics, the beam that will be produced has uses that go beyond particle physics. The continuous-wave beam—as opposed to a pulsed one—makes it possible for Project X to also support experiments validating assumptions that underlie accelerator-driven waste treatment concepts. It would also demonstrate the associated accelerator and target technologies, Johnson said.

By hitting a lead-bismuth target with protons, a high-power, continuous-wave linac would create fast, or highly energetic neutrons. These fast neutrons would burn up the dangerous radioactive elements in nuclear waste, significantly reducing its half-life. In order to meet the requirements for treating nuclear waste on the industrial scale, the accelerator must operate reliably with virtually no downtime. Johnson explained that by advancing technologies and producing stable accelerator operations, Project X could serve as a proof of concept for the application.

“We would like to get the nuclear community excited about this potential facility,” Johnson said. “We welcome any and all participation.”

- Elizabeth Clements



Astute readers of the ES&H Tip in Monday's Fermilab Today pointed out that the 2010 Illinois Bicycle Rules of the Road instruct bicyclists to "Ride single file. Do not ride next to each other if possible." This is a clear and prudent statement.

The Illinois Vehicle Code covers this in more detail: "Sec. 11 1505.1. Persons riding bicycles or motorized pedal cycles upon a roadway shall not ride more than 2 abreast" and "shall not impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic."

Director's Corner


Fermilab Director Pier Oddone

In the midst of all the hurly-burly of the last few weeks, from the budget negotiations in Washington, to the fire in Soudan, to finding evidence for what could turn out to be a revolutionary discovery, other important events have gotten less attention.

Last Saturday we brought the NuMI beam to full operation, several weeks ahead of the originally conceived schedule. The graphite target that we use to produce neutrinos failed late in February during operations. A very careful autopsy - difficult to carry out - confirmed our suspicions regarding the cause of the failure. These targets are very delicate objects and are manufactured in Russia’s atomic energy industry, which has the ability to braze the target cooling tubes to the graphite slices that are at the core of the target. The first NuMI targets had long lifetimes, but more recent targets have developed leaks after short periods of operation. We suspected a specific set of welds had failed and this was confirmed by the autopsy. We observed that the replacement target had the same issues on this section of welds and redesigned the troublesome section. This modified target is now in the beam and we hope will achieve the long-term performance of the early targets. Last Wednesday I was able to see how technicians installed the new target in the NuMI beam line. This installation and the whole operation of understanding and modifying the target have been very impressive indeed. Kudos to Kris Anderson and all involved!

There have been two very successful audits that are worth mentioning. The first one was a surprise audit by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency looking at our environmental programs. There were six inspectors involved in the audit and it took two days. These surprise audits look at every aspect of our environmental program: air; water; waste management and other regulated aspects in the management of our environment. While the final report of this audit is not yet out, the closeout was extraordinarily positive and there were no findings. The inspectors had a few suggestions for improvements for us to consider.

Read more

Accelerator Update

April 4-11

- Five stores provided ~66.5 hours of luminosity
- NuMI personnel conducted target scans
- MI personnel conducted G minus 2 studies
- Pbar dump LCW system developed leak
- NuMI began taking beam
- Linac Klystron RF station's charging power supply repaired
- Linac RF station repaired

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


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Heartland Blood Drive - April 25-26

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Fermilab Lecture Series - The LHC - Maleika Meddahi, LHC - April 15

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ACU offers $1,000 scholarship deadline - April 25

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