Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2012

Have a safe day!

Wednesday, Aug. 15
3:30 p.m.

4 p.m.
Fermilab Colloquium (NOTE LOCATION) - Auditorium
Speaker: Rob Plunkett, Fermilab
Title: The Ghost that Wasn't: Neutrino Physics in the Twenty-first Century

Thursday, Aug. 16
2:30 p.m.
Theoretical Physics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: Luca Vecchi, Los Alamos National Laboratory
Title: On Partial Compositeness and the CP Asymmetry in Charm Decays

3:30 p.m.


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

Upcoming conferences


Take Five

Weather Slight chance of showers

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Current Security Status

Secon Level 3

Current Flag Status

Flags at full-staff

Wilson Hall Cafe

Wednesday, Aug. 15

- Breakfast: breakfast strata
- White-chicken chili
- Carolina chopped-pork sandwich
- Chicken curry
- Smart cuisine: turkey fresca fettucine
- Italian antipasto sandwich
- Pepperoni lover's calzone
- Mumbo jumbo baked pancakes

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

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

Friday, Aug. 17

Chez Leon Menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


Fermilab Today

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Klystron six-cavity test shows promise for lower-cost linacs

This high-powered klystron emits a large radio-frequency signal that can be split into several signals and managed through vector modulators for several accelerator cavities at once. Photo: Joseph Piergrossi

An accelerator test at Fermilab has shown that a proton beam could be accelerated with fewer radio-frequency power sources than previously used.

A cavity is one of the elements in an accelerator that helps bring a particle beam up to the desired energy. As a particle beam travels down the axis of a cavity, the changing electric fields inside help kick the beam down the line. Klystrons power the cavities, sending them radio-frequency pulses to help propel the particles.

A typical accelerator has multiple cavities, each one of which is hooked up to its own klystron. With the High-Intensity Neutrino Source accelerator at the Meson Detector Hall, one klystron drives six room-temperature cavities at once. (Despite its name, the HINS accelerator does not directly involve neutrinos. It accelerates protons.)

"The point was to see if we could find a more cost-effective way of running an accelerator," said Jim Steimel, an engineer for the project.

A klystron is one of the more expensive devices on a linear accelerator. The purpose of having one klystron per cavity is to allow fine control of each cavity's power and keep the particles accelerating at the correct rate. The HINS experiment showed that a single high-powered signal could be split among several cavities to the same effect.

"Imagine you have a barrel with six taps," said Sergei Nagaitsev, AD physicist. "Through each one you want to run water at a certain rate at a certain time. That's what this accelerator does for RF power."

Each of the "taps" on the experimental accelerator has a vector modulator, which allows an operator to regulate how much power is flowing into a particular cavity. Steimel said programming the VMs was the most difficult part of building this type of linac.

"One of the big issues was that because the VMs are high-power, they are not as fast," he said. "Bandwidth becomes an issue." A team led by Brian Chase, who leads the low-level radio-frequency group in the Accelerator Division, figured out how best to program the VMs to mitigate the bandwidth problem.

The test not only demonstrated that the single klystron could power six cavities at once, but more importantly that the vector modulators could properly distribute the power to each cavity. This approach is best applied in linacs that accelerate pulsed beams, as contrasted with so-called continuous-wave beams. Continuous-wave linacs will still require multiple radio-frequency power sources.

Steimel anticipates that other accelerator projects will consider using this technology and is keeping the experimental setup open for others to continue research and development.

"This is a very important demonstration because of the potential cost-saving benefit to future pulsed linacs," said Associate Director for Accelerators Stuart Henderson. "Achieving this successful demonstration was the result of a lot of hard work by the HINS team."

Nagaitsev agreed.

"It was important for us to do this because others in the world were asking us how it would work," Nagaitsev said.

Physicist and Project X Project Manager Steve Holmes said he is looking at the technology for possible use in the future downstream pulsed linac section of Project X.

"It seems like such a natural approach to saving money," Holmes said.

Joseph Piergrossi

University Profile

Texas Tech University

Texas Tech University

Lubbock, Texas

Red Raider

Scarlet and black

Mid 1990s


Four faculty, five postdocs, two support staff members and three graduate students

For the last few years, the TTU high-energy physics group has focused on data analyses from the CMS detector. The group members are active participants in the Higgs boson searches, Beyond the Standard Model physics and precision studies in electroweak physics. We conduct ongoing studies of jet structures and missing transverse-energy objects. Our group has an established calorimetry R&D effort, which had a significant impact in CMS, in particular on the forward calorimeters.

We have played leading roles in the CMS HCAL (hadron calorimeter) group and designed and helped construct the CMS forward calorimeters. We established a generic calorimetry R&D project in the last decade that aims to improve the performance of hadronic calorimeters to their ultimate limits in future experiments. Also, we have actively participated in the QuarkNet program every year since 2001. We are dedicated to working with teachers and students in our area at all levels and to increasing public awareness of physics research.


View all university profiles.


Upcoming retirement plan fee disclosures

The Department of Labor's Benefits Security Administration recently issued regulations requiring employer-sponsored retirement plans to provide greater transparency for plan participants by disclosing the fees associated with retirement plans and investments. These new disclosure requirements cover Fermilab's 401(a) and 403(b) plans.

The purpose of the disclosure is to ensure that you, as a participant in the plan, understand the costs associated with your retirement plans, the costs of the investments that you choose and the impact these costs can have on your account over time. These disclosures are intended to help you make more informed decisions when evaluating and selecting investment managers, investments and the services you choose.

Fermilab is required to provide an initial fee disclosure by Aug. 30, 2012, to active employees and those retirees or other former employees who still maintain a balance with one of our retirement plan vendors. An updated disclosure will be issued annually. We have partnered with TIAA-CREF to provide the fee disclosure information for both the 401(a) and the 403(b) retirement plans. These disclosures include information on all plan services, fees and investments.

One fee disclosure will be issued for each plan. The fee disclosures are organized in two sections:

  • Summary of Plan Services and Costs
  • Investment Options Comparative Chart

These documents will help you to evaluate the services you receive and make it easier to understand the associated fees and expenses for those services.

TIAA-CREF will send to your Fermilab e-mail address a notification e-mail by Aug. 30, 2012. This e-mail will provide a link to TIAA-CREF's website, where you can review the fee disclosure documents electronically. On the TIAA-CREF disclosure website, you will need to select either:

  • 101300 for the 401(a) Fermilab Retirement Plan with TIAA-CREF
  • 101301 for the 403(b) tax deferred accounts with TIAA-CREF, Fidelity, Dreyfus and T. Rowe Price

The information provided in the fee disclosures is not new to the plans. Fees have always been a part of your retirement plans. Each pension vendor provides this information in its prospectus and on its website. The only thing that has changed is that this information must now be provided to you annually in a single document, for all plan service providers and investments. The fees associated with the plan and your investments are one of the factors you should consider when you make an investment decision, along with investment performance, contribution amount and asset allocation.

For more information, contact Wilma Cardona in the Benefits Office.

Safety Update

ES&H weekly report, Aug. 14

This week's safety report, compiled by the Fermilab ES&H section, contains two incidents.

A day-care teacher strained her shoulder while handling a baby. She received first-aid treatment.

An employee noticed a tick on her neck while working at her computer. She received first-aid treatment.

Find the full report here.
In the News

Hot stuff: CERN physicists create record-breaking subatomic soup

From Nature News Blog, August 13, 2012

Get Guinness. Physicists at CERN's Large Hadron Collider near Geneva, Switzerland, have achieved the hottest manmade temperatures ever, by colliding lead ions to momentarily create a quark–gluon plasma, a subatomic soup and unique state of matter that is thought to have existed just moments after the Big Bang.

The results come from the ALICE heavy-ion experiment — a lesser-known sibling to ATLAS and the Compact Muon Solenoid, which produced the data that led to the announcement in July that the Higgs boson had been discovered.

Read more
In the News

The first public data release from BOSS, the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey

From Berkeley Lab News Center, August 8, 2012

The Third Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS-III) has issued Data Release 9 (DR9), the first public release of data from the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS). In this release BOSS, the largest of SDSS-III's four surveys, provides spectra for 535,995 newly observed galaxies, 102,100 quasars, and 116,474 stars, plus new information about objects in previous Sloan surveys (SDSS-I and II).

"This is just the first of three data releases from BOSS," says David Schlegel of the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), an astrophysicist in the Lab's Physics Division and BOSS's principal investigator.

Read more

Today's New Announcements

Butts & Guts offered twice a week - begins Aug. 21

Zumba offered twice a week - begins Aug. 22

Drawing to win palm tree - today

University of Chicago Tuition Remission Program deadline - Aug. 17

Fermilab Triathlon - Aug. 18

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

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

Fermilab employee discounts

Atrium work updates