Monday, June 11, 2012

Have a safe day!

Monday, June 11
1 to 6 p.m.
Tevatron Impact Symposium - Auditorium




Tuesday, June 12
8 a.m.
Users' Annual Meeting Registration - Auditorium Lobby
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Users' Annual Meeting
Undergraduate Lecture Series (NOTE LOCATION) - Curia II
Speaker: Maurice Ball, Fermilab
Tite: Mechanical Engineering
8 p.m.
Fermilab Lecture Series - Auditorium
Speaker: David Gross
Title: The Frontiers of Fundamental Physics



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Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, June 11


- Breakfast: Croissant sandwich
- French Quarter gumbo soup
- French dip w/ horseradish cream sauce
- Veal parmesan
- Smart cuisine: Country baked chicken
- Popcorn shrimp wrap
- Assorted sliced pizza
- Caesar salad

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, June 13
- Salad Niçoise
- Sponge cake w/ raspberry sauce

Friday, June 15

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Special Announcement

Tevatron Impact - today

Today from 1 to 6 p.m. CDT, the Tevatron Impact symposium will celebrate the Tevatron program's lasting impacts on science, technology and society. A reception will follow in the Wilson Hall atrium. If you are unable to attend in person, you can watch a live stream of the symposium here.

View the agenda for today's symposium.


With big data, Fermilab plays a big role

Fermilab has been dealing with tremendous amounts of data for years using systems like these at the Grid Computing Center. Photo: Reidar Hahn

With computing power and capabilities expanding and evolving at a rapid pace, the world has been producing exceedingly vast amounts of data. Annual worldwide computer use produces zettabytes of information – that’s a trillion gigabytes – and that figure is growing rapidly. The U.S. Office of Science and Technology Policy recently announced the Big Data Research and Development Initiative, aimed at making such enormous quantities of data more useful to researchers, businesses and policymakers.

“Data in and of itself isn’t very useful unless you have the tools to find it, read it, understand it, and make good use of it,” said Rob Roser, head of the Scientific Computing Division at Fermilab.

Since its founding, Fermilab has been working with large amounts of data. Over 30 petabytes of information, or 30 million gigabytes, are stored on robotic tape, and the laboratory is capable of transferring up to 100 gigabits per second over its network, said Ruth Pordes, associate head of the Computing Sector.

Dealing with that data is not an easy task.

“The one thing about big data is that it will kill you if you don’t handle it in a very automated fashion,” said Roser.

Most data is immediately useful to scientists in developing trends and determining patterns, but the exceptions to those trends are often the most important pieces. Those outliers have to be looked at on a case-by-case basis, difficult to achieve with the vast amounts of data involved Roser said.

Managing big data is nearly impossible without something known in computing circles as triggering, a process that helps determine what data is sufficiently valuable to keep. At the Tevatron, scientists developed sophisticated algorithms to decide in real time which few hundred of the two million proton-anti-proton collisions each second could safely be discarded without missing a discovery.

“One of our goals is to democratize the availability of the data,” said Lothar Bauerdick, U.S. Compact Muon Solenoid software and computing manager. “The data could be studied by everyone, not just scientists.” Roser added that one issue is to preserve data and analysis capability for the future.

Fermilab plans to expand its data capabilities by connecting this summer to advanced 100-gigabit network.

“When it comes to Big Data, Fermilab is already in, and will be continuing to grow, in this space,” said Fermilab CIO Vicky White. “We are definitely looking forward to continuing our contributions as part of this national priority.”

—Joseph Piergrossi

Video of the Day

Into the subatomic jungle

Peer into the subatomic jungle in Fermilab's first ever silent movie. There, you'll encounter the precessing charged leptons; the speedy (but not too speedy) neutrinos; the gregarious quarks; the mighty, force-carrying bosons; and the elusive Higgs boson.

Correction: Liquid-Argon Purity Demonstrator

In the June 7 issue of Fermilab Today, the article "LBNE builds a 35-ton prototype cryostat" incorrectly stated that Liquid-Argon Purity Demonstrator will finish its program this year in order for the 35-ton prototype to reuse components of its liquid-argon purification system. In fact, LAPD and the 35-ton prototype will share the system and LAPD will be able to continue its program during construction and operation of the prototype.

You can read the corrected article here.

In the News

Fermilab says goodbye to Lederman

From The Herald News, June 8, 2012

BATAVIA — Fermilab physicists said a fond farewell to one of their favorite and most famous colleagues, in a manner only physicists could dream up — a gong, a roast, hundreds of scientists gathering around for one last photo, and a Mother Goose rhyme.

"These are the thousands of people who watch the detectors that witness the protons that kill antiprotons that fly in the magnets that make the collider that Leon built," read Vladimir Shiltsev, addressing Leon Lederman and a crowd of current and former Fermilab staff who on Friday said goodbye to Lederman. The lab's Nobel-prize winning director emeritus is retiring to Driggs, Idaho.

Read more

Quality Assurance

Procuring quality work at Fermilab

The OQBP conducted interviews for this year's procurement assessment.

The Office of Quality and Best Practices is glad to report that Fermilab employees are following procurement policies and procedures.

OQBP, along with Division/Section/
Center quality assurance representatives, completed a series of laboratory-wide procurement assessments between October 2011 and March 2012. These assessments evaluated the implementation and effectiveness of quality assurance controls in each division, section and center. The assessments were conducted by interview and review of documents, databases and Individual Training Needs Assessments. Sixty-four people were interviewed and over 122 purchase requisitions or orders were examined.

The results show that Fermilab staff are meeting and effectively implementing both the procurement requirements found in the IQA, the Fermilab Procurement Manual and local policies and procedures. There were no lab-wide findings and only two local findings were made.

  1. Some employees had expired training for sustainable acquisition, which refers to environmentally preferred purchasing. This training is required for all employees.
  2. One organization did not have a written National Environmental Policy Act procurement review procedure, which is required by FESHM chapter 5010. Among other things, the procedure establishes procurement reviews to ensure that risks to safety, health and the environment are identified.

These are very good results given the large number of procurement actions at Fermilab.

A lab-wide roll-up report as well as individual D/S/C reports can be found on the OQBP website.

Fermilab’s procurement requirements can be found in Chapter 7 of the Integrated Quality Assurance document, the Fermilab Procurement Manual and the Procurement Card User’s Guide. Local D/S/C procurement policies and procedures may also be available. Contact your quality assurance representatives to obtain a copy of these documents.

OQBP would like to thank everyone who participated in these assessments, especially those who were interviewed.

—Mike Pakan


Latest Announcements

Bike to Work Week challenge - June 9-15

SharePoint end-user training - June 15

Tevatron symposium - today

Deadline for swim lessons - today

Cafeteria closes at 1 p.m. - June 11-12

Nobel laureate David Gross gives public lecture - June 12

Scottish country dancing cancelled - June 12; moves to Auditorium - June 19

Fermilab Users' Meeting - June 12-13

Identity theft webinar: Don't take the bait - June 13

International Folk Dancing moves to Auditorium - June 14

New Perspectives is coming - June 14

University of Chicago Tuition Remission Program deadline - June 15

Adult water aerobics - begins June 18

Video series on six different world religions - starts June 19

DreamWeaver CS5: Intro class - June 19-20

DASTOW - June 20

Intermediate/advanced Python programming class - June 20-22

Fermilab prairie quadrat study - begins June 26

After-hours shuttle trial extended through June

Project Management Introduction class - July 23-27

Fermilab Management Practices Seminar - begins Oct. 4

Interpersonal communication skills training - Nov. 14

Garden Club plots available

10,000 Steps weekly participant winner

10,000 Steps iPod Shuffle winner

Outdoor soccer - Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6 p.m.

Pool memberships available

Join Walk 10,000 Steps-A-Day

Employee discount for Father's Day at

Six Flags Great America discounts

Employee offer at Pockets

Dragon II restaurant employee discount

Changarro restaurant offers 15 percent discount to employees

Atrium construction updates