Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014

Have a safe day!

Tuesday, Oct. 21

9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
NuSTEC Training in Neutrino-Nucleus Scattering Physics - One West

3:30 p.m.
Theoretical Physics Seminar (NOTE DATE, TIME, LOCATION) - WH3NE
Speaker: Junko Shigemitsu
Title: Precision Flavor Physics and Lattice QCD

3:30 p.m.
Director's Coffee Break - 2nd Flr X-Over


Wednesday, Oct. 22

9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
NuSTEC Training in Neutrino-Nucleus Scattering Physics - One West

3:30 p.m.
Director's Coffee Break - WH2XO

4 p.m.
Fermilab Colloquium - One West
Speaker: Jean Paul Allain, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Title: Advanced Adaptive Nanomaterials Under Extreme Conditions: Current Progress and Challenges

Visit the labwide calendar to view Fermilab events

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Wilson Hall Cafe

Tuesday, Oct. 21

- Breakfast: All-American breakfast
- Breakfast: bacon, egg and cheese bagel
- Cajun chicken sandwich
- Portobello and peppers over soft polenta
- Kielbasa and kraut
- Grilled chicken Caesar jazz salad wrap
- Pork carnitas soft tacos
- Chef's choice soup
- Chicken and sausage gumbo
- Assorted pizza by the slice

Wilson Hall Cafe menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Oct. 22
Vegetarian special
- Sweet potato and chickpea cakes with avocado salsa
- Sauteed lemony broccolini
- Rustic fruit tart

Friday, Oct. 24
- Potato, bacon and gruyere souffle
- Medallions of beef with wild mushroom sauce
- Parsnip puree
- Sauteed Brussels sprouts
- Pear tart

Chez Leon menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Simulation in the 21st century

This CMS simulated event was created using Geant4 simulation software. Image: CMS Collaboration

Simulation is not magic, but it can certainly produce the feeling. Although it can't miraculously replace particle physics experiments, revealing new physics phenomena at the touch of a key, it can help scientists to design detectors for best physics at the minimum cost in time and money.

Geant4 is a detector simulation software toolkit originally created at CERN and currently developed by about 100 physicists and computer scientists from all around the world to model the passage of particles through matter and electromagnetic fields. For example, physicists use simulation to optimize detectors and software algorithms with the goal to measure, with utmost efficiency, marks that previously unobserved particles predicted by new theories would leave in their experimental devices.

Particle physics detectors are typically large and complex. Think of them as a set of hundreds of different shapes and materials. Particles coming from accelerator beams or high-energy collisions traverse the detectors, lose energy and transform themselves into showers of more particles as they interact with the detector material. The marks they leave behind are read by detector electronics and reconstructed by software into the original incident particles with their associated energies and trajectories.

We wouldn't even dream of starting detector construction, much less asking for the funding to do it, without simulating the detector geometry and magnetic fields, as well as the physics of the interactions of particles with detector material, in exquisite detail. One of the goals of simulation is to demonstrate that the proposed detector would do the job.

Geant4 includes tools to represent the detector geometry by assembling elements of different shapes, sizes and material, as well as the mathematical expressions to propagate particles and calculate the details of the electromagnetic and nuclear interactions of particles with matter.

Geant4 is the current incarnation of Geant (Geometry and Tracking, or "giant" in French). It has become extremely popular for physics, medical and space science applications and is the tool of choice for high-energy physics, including CERN's LHC experiments and Fermilab's neutrino and muon programs.

The Fermilab Scientific Computing Simulation Department (SCS) has grown a team of Geant4 experts that participate actively in its core development and maintenance, offering detector simulation support to experiments and projects within Fermilab's scientific program. The focus of our team is on improving physics and testing tools, as well as time and memory performance. The SCS team also spearheads an exciting R&D program to re-engineer the toolkit to run on modern computer architectures.

New-generation machines containing chips called coprocessors, or graphics processing units such as those used in game consoles or smart phones, may be used to speed execution times significantly. Software engineers do this by exploiting the benefits of the novel circuit design of the chips, as well as by using parallel programming. For example, a program execution mode called "multi-threading" would allow us to simulate particles from showers of different physics collisions simultaneously by submitting these threads to the hundreds or thousands of processor cores contained within these novel computer systems.

As the high-energy community builds, commissions and runs the experiments of the first half of the 21st century, a world of exciting and promising possibilities is opening in the field of simulation and detector modeling. Our Fermilab SCS team is at the forefront of this effort.

V. Daniel Elvira, Scientific Computing Simulation Department head


In memoriam: Chivas Makaroplos

Longtime Fermilab friend and perhaps the most familiar face at the Users Center, Chivas Makaroplos passed away on Saturday, Oct. 18, after her long battle with cancer. Makaroplos, who tended bar at the Users Center and cooked for Chez Leon, enjoyed being a part of Fermilab and considered everyone at the lab as her family.

Visiting hours for Makaroplos will be held at Moss Family Funeral Home, 209 South Batavia Avenue in Batavia, on Thursday, Oct. 23, from 4-8 p.m. An after-service gathering will be held at the Fermilab Users Center. All are invited to attend to honor Chivas' life.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the American Cancer Society.

Read Makaroplos' obituary.

Photo of the Day

Wilson Hall surrounded by fall

Fall's many red and golden hues take over the Fermilab landscape. Photo: Marty Murphy, AD
In the News

New exotic particle could help explain what holds matter together

From Live Science, Oct. 14, 2014

A new exotic particle has been hiding out amidst the gobs of data collected by the world's largest atom smasher, physicists have discovered.

The new particle, called Ds3*, is a meson — a type of unstable particle made of one quark and one antiquark. Quarks are subatomic particles and are the most basic building blocks of matter that make up protons and neutrons. They're held together by the strong interaction, or strong force, that is one of the four fundamental forces in nature. (Electromagnetism, weak interaction and gravity are the other three.) No stable form of matter would exist without the strong interaction holding it together.

Read more

From the Chief Operating Officer

Planning to plan

Tim Meyer

I often use a list to keep track of what I've promised to do each day. To boost my confidence in the morning, the first item on every to-do list is "Make a list," so that each day starts with at least one accomplishment.

Similarly, but on a much larger scale, we are "planning to plan" here at Fermilab. Few things happen without a plan, so we're focusing on enhancing our planning.

But first, what is a plan? According to BusinessDictionary.com, a plan is "a written account of [an] intended future course of action aimed at achieving specific goal(s) within a specific time frame." When you read a plan, you should get a clear set of expectations about what will happen by when.

A number of efforts are launching this season to enhance how Fermilab plans. The goal, however, is not to produce larger and more complex to-do lists! We want to improve how we combine to-do lists to form larger and more complex plans that guide and shape the entire laboratory. Ultimately, we believe that an improved plan and an improved planning process will (a) enhance our credibility with stakeholders, (b) strengthen our arguments for resources and (c) increase our success.

One of the most important drivers of these planning efforts is the May 2014 report of the Particle Physics Project Prioritization Panel (P5). This report outlined a vision for the United States in particle physics and identified specific roles for Fermilab. As discussed by our laboratory director Nigel Lockyer, Fermilab is aligned with and in support of the P5 plan. To stay aligned with and fulfill the P5 vision, Fermilab needs a strategic plan that identifies the actions, resources (people, places and purchases) and timelines: the right people focused on the right things at the right time.

Erik Gottschalk, inaugural head of integrated planning and performance management, is leading a group effort to improve how Fermilab can quickly, easily and reliably develop and maintain its strategic plan. As resources change from year to year, as outside partners join efforts or as new discoveries are made, the laboratory needs to modify its overall strategic plan to stay focused on the P5 vision. Erik's team will redesign how the laboratory develops the Annual Lab Plan by taking advantage of new efforts around the laboratory, including the Budget and Planning System and critical-skills management tools in FermiWorks. Without irony, the first step of this effort is developing a plan!

Elsewhere, Randy Ortgiesen is leading an effort to improve planning through the new Campus and Facility Planning Board. The goal is to bring together the people and ideas for changing our campus and to prioritize and advise the lab on what to do where, when and how. For instance, the new board will provide guidance on the long list of proposed General Plant Projects as well as proposals to the DOE Science Laboratory Infrastructure program. This group will be formed and hold its first meeting soon, so stay tuned.

In closing, a dose of humility is always in order. Dwight D. Eisenhower once noted, "Plans are worthless, but planning is indispensable." Enough talking, enough planning: time to take action!

In Brief

Submit your questions and concerns to the Fermilab Employee Advisory Group

The Fermilab Employee Advisory Group wants to hear your suggestions about laboratory work life. Front row, from left: Al Dhimar, Stephen Brice, John Kent, Nigel Lockyer, Vicky White, Farah Fahim, Martin Bentivengo, Jody Federwitz, Sandra Efstathiou. Back row, from left: Bob O'Sullivan, Cheryl Bentham, Dave Harding, Karen Seifrid, Mike Pfaff, Andrew Dalesandro, Amber Kenney, Charlie Cooper. Not pictured: Sabina Aponte, Keith Coiley, Terry Cross, Cindy Joe, Tim Messer, Juliana Whitmore, Karl Williams

Do you have a question, concern or suggestion about work life at Fermilab? Submit it online to Fermilab's Employee Advisory Group.

The EAG provides laboratory senior management with employee perspectives, insights and suggestions about the development and implementation of new and revised policies that affect our workplace. Topics of discussion include:

  • Fair application of flexible work schedules and telecommuting policies
  • Improving the employee orientation process
  • Improving procedures for addressing and resolving employee concerns
  • Identifying ways to create and maintain a positive culture throughout the laboratory

The Employee Advisory Group is here to assist you and looks forward to hearing from you.


Today's New Announcements

Laboratory Directed Research and Development information sessions - Oct. 22, 28

Halloween party for Fermilab families in Kuhn Barn - Oct. 29

NALWO Playgroup meets Wednesdays at Users Center

Ask Me About FermiWorks booth in atrium - Oct. 21-22, 27-30

Main site ICW flush through Oct. 24

Lecture Series: Success and Failure in Engineering - Oct. 24

Muscle Toning by Bod Squad - register by Oct. 28

Excel 2010: Intermediate - Oct. 29

Managing Conflict - Nov. 5 (morning only)

Access 2010: Advanced - Nov. 12

Wilson Fellowship accepting applications through Nov. 14

Excel 2010: Advanced - Dec. 3

New ebook on beam dynamics available

OSX 10.10 Yosemite not yet certified

Pace Batavia Call-n-Ride service to Fermilab

International folk dancing Thursday evenings at Kuhn Barn

Scottish country dancing Tuesday evenings at Kuhn Barn

English country dancing at Kuhn Barn

Indoor soccer

Hollywood Palms Employee Appreciation Day