Friday, Aug. 10, 2012

Have a safe day!

Friday, Aug. 10
3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
Joint Experimental-Theoretical Physics Seminar (NOTE LOCATION) - Auditorium
Speaker: Mousumi Datta and Marco Verzocchi, Fermilab
Title: Review of Tevatron Summer 2012 Results (in conjunction with HCP Summer School)

Monday, Aug. 13

3:30 p.m.


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Wilson Hall Cafe

Friday, Aug. 10

- Breakfast: chorizo burrito
- Old-fashioned ham and bean soup
- Philly-style chicken
- Chicken pot pie
- Smart cuisine: baked fish over rice
- Roasted veggie and provolone panini
- Assorted sliced pizza
- Carved baked ham

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu
Chez Leon

Friday, Aug. 10
- Balsamic salad
- Porcini crusted fillet w/ tarragon butter
- Parmesan whipped potatoes
- Steamed broccoli
- Peach crepes w/ cajeta sauce

Wednesday, Aug. 15
- Spicy sausage- and cheese-stuffed portobello mushroom
- Spinach salad
- Strawberry mousse w/ cookies

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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In Brief

Fermilab-University investigators receive $375,000 in collaborative seed grants

Five teams of University of Chicago and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory researchers—one group that includes a researcher from Argonne National Laboratory—recently received $375,000, collectively, in Strategic Collaborative Initiative seed grants from the university following a rigorous competition managed by Fermilab and the university. Three out of five of the teams received second-year funding.

The FY 2012 recipients include:

  • Title: Simulating the Universe with Realistic Physics (Year 2)
    University of Chicago Investigator: Andrey Kravtsov, Associate Professor, Astronomy and Astrophysics
    Fermilab Investigator: Nickolay Gnedin, Scientist I, Theoretical Astrophysics Group
  • Title: Understanding Ultrahigh Quality Factor Accelerator Cavities in the Quantum Regime (Year 2)
    University of Chicago Investigator: David Schuster, Assistant Professor, Physics
    Fermilab Investigator: Lance Cooley, Scientist, Superconducting Materials Department
  • Title: A New Photodetection System for PET Imaging Using Silicon Photomultipliers (Year 2)
    University of Chicago Investigator: Chin-Tu Chen, Associate Professor, Radiology
    Fermilab Investigator: Erik Ramberg, Scientist II, Particle Physics Division
  • Title: Optical Modulation with Wavelength Division Multiplexing from HEP Data Readout
    University of Chicago Investigator: Mark Oreglia, Professor of Physics
    Argonne Investigator: Robert Stanek, Physicist, High Energy Physics Division
    Fermilab Investigator: Simon Kwan, Scientist II, Computing Division
  • Title: Development of Low Noise Electronics for the First Direct Dark Matter Search Using CCDs
    University of Chicago Investigator: Paolo Privitera, Professor of Physics
    Fermilab Investigators: Juan Estrada, Scientist II, Particle Physics Division and Gustavo Cancelo, Engineer IV, Computing Division

The Strategic Collaborative Initiatives Program began in 2005 when the university renewed its contract with the DOE to manage Argonne. The SCI program includes collaborative research projects, strategic joint appointments and joint institutes. The university extended the program to Fermilab when it became co-manager of the lab in 2006.

Photo of the Day

Korea-U.S. Collaboration Center opens at Fermilab

On Tuesday, members of Fermilab, the Korean Ministry of Education, Science & Technology and the Rare Isotope Science Project in Korea participated in the ceremonial opening of the Korea-U.S. Collaboration Center. Photo: Reidar Hahn
In the News

Young researchers win European grants worth €3m

From the University of Sussex, Aug. 9, 2012

Editor's note: The University of Sussex has joined Fermilab's NOvA experiment.

Dr Jeff Hartnell and Dr David Seery will each receive €1.5 million Starting Grants – for those in the early years of their research career - from the European Research Council (ERC).

Dr Hartnell, Lecturer in Experimental Particle Physics, plans to support scientific investigations into fundamental issues about the universe and our existence, such as why there is much more matter than antimatter.

Physicists theorise that the big bang created equal amounts of matter and antimatter. When corresponding particles of matter and antimatter meet, they annihilate one another. But somehow we're still here, and antimatter, for the most part, has vanished.

The best measurements to date show that matter and antimatter behave almost identically and so can't explain how we're all here. Scientists believe that neutrinos could hold the key to understanding this mystery.

Dr Hartnell will use the ERC grant to set up a new independent research group at Sussex on the NOvA experiment, which will fire beams of neutrinos and antineutrinos through Earth looking for differences in the way they behave.

Read more

Physics in a Nutshell

Breaking supersymmetry

Like supersymmetry, most snowflakes are nearly, but not exactly, symmetric. Image:

Read the expanded column on broken supersymmetry.

At its smallest scale, nature is highly symmetric. There are many different kinds of symmetries among particles— for instance, matter and antimatter are identical except for charge, like an image in a mirror that is the same as its object, but reversed. Photons of the electromagnetic force and Z bosons of the weak force differ only in mass. One could say that particle physics is really the study of nature's symmetries.

It should be no surprise, then, that physicists are seeking new symmetries to understand the universe at a deeper level. Supersymmetry is a hypothetical symmetry between matter and forces— if correct, matter and forces would be two sides of the same coin.

Exact supersymmetry would be very simple: Each particle of matter would have a corresponding particle of force with the same mass, such as quarks and "squarks" (supersymmetric quarks). However, no such thing has been observed. If it exists, supersymmetry must be inexact— quarks and squarks would have different masses, much like the inexact symmetry between massless photons and massive Z bosons. Supersymmetry's attractiveness is undimmed by this imperfection, however. In fact, broken supersymmetry could explain how our complex world unifies at exceedingly high energies, where the little mass differences between quarks and squarks disappear.

But like a shattered mirror, broken supersymmetry is a messy business. There are more than 100 free parameters— knobs to turn— when describing the way that supersymmetry might be inexact. Each of them predicts different particles and different decay patterns.

To control the chaos, physicists often focus their attention on simple models, in which many of the free parameters are chosen to be equal to each other. The simplest is known as the constrained Minimally Supersymmetric Standard Model, or cMSSM. In this model, there are only five free parameters. When physicists seek supersymmetry, they often cast an eye toward the cMSSM for guidance. At the very least, it provides a concrete way to track progress.

Of the supersymmetry search experiments conducted over the last 30 years, the Large Hadron Collider has done the most to rule out new combinations of the cMSSM parameter values: If the mass of cMSSM squarks were small enough to be within the LHC's energy range, it would have produced them by now. Deciding when to pronounce the model dead is subjective, but there is a great deal of discussion about it, and the prognosis is not good.

What if the cMSSM is truly and finally ruled out? That would be a major milestone, a disappointment perhaps, but the broader subject of supersymmetry would not be closed. Physicists are already rolling up their sleeves and considering more general models of supersymmetry breaking, as well as alternatives to supersymmetry that solve some of the same problems. However this turns out, the picture is not as simple as it might have been.

—Jim Pivarski

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Today's New Announcements

Budker Seminar - Aug. 13

Heartland Blood Drive - Aug. 13-14

Drawing to win palm tree - Aug. 15

University of Chicago Tuition Remission Program deadline - Aug. 17

Howard Levy & Chris Siebold - Aug. 18

URA Visiting Scholars Program deadline - Aug. 27

Scottish country dancing in Ramsey Auditorium - through Aug. 31

International Folk Dancing in Ramsey Auditorium - through August

Project Management Introduction class - Sept. 10-14

Fermilab Management Practices Seminar - begins Oct. 4

Interpersonal communication skills training - Nov. 14

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

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