Monday, Oct. 27, 2014

Have a safe day!

Monday, Oct. 27

9:30 a.m.-4:45 p.m.
NuSTEC Training in Neutrino-Nucleus Scattering Physics - One West

2 p.m.
Particle Astrophysics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: Philipp Mertsch, KIPAC and Stanford University
Title: Cosmic Ray Anisotropies and Nearby Sources

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

4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II

Tuesday, Oct. 28

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

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


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Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, Oct. 28

- Breakfast: pancake sandwich
- Breakfast: sausage, egg and cheese croissant
- Philly chicken sandwich
- Pork tenderloin with raspberry sauce
- Filipino chicken adobo
- Spicy buffalo chicken wrap
- Szechuan-style green beans with chicken
- Minestrone
- Texas-style chili
- Assorted pizza by the slice

Wilson Hall Cafe menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Oct. 29
- Rouladen
- Spaetzle
- Dill baby carrots
- Baked apples

Friday, Oct. 31

Chez Leon menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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Scientists Roger Dixon and Erik Ramberg receive 2014 Director's Award

Accelerator Division scientists Roger Dixon and Erik Ramberg were recognized by Director Nigel Lockyer last week for their contributions to the Saturday Morning Physics program at Fermilab. Photo: Reidar Hahn

At the annual education volunteers reception on Oct. 20, Fermilab Director Nigel Lockyer presented Fermilab physicists Roger Dixon and Erik Ramberg with the Director's Award for their more than 15 years of running Fermilab's Saturday Morning Physics education program.

Lockyer praised Dixon and Ramberg's decades of commitment to teaching physics to thousands of high school students.

"Roger's love of educating the next generation and giving them his best enhances the lab's reputation in education and science research," Lockyer said. He added, "Erik's recent work with the sustainability initiative, resulting in the installation of a solar energy panel outside the Lederman Center, is an example of his focus on educating the next generation."

Dixon and Ramberg both said their love of volunteering has been unabated since assuming the Saturday Morning Physics leadership from the program's founders, former Fermilab director Leon Lederman and former Fermilab physicist Drasko Jovanovic, early advocates for education at the laboratory. They also said that similar programs all over the world have been modeled on Fermilab's Saturday Morning Physics.

"I was invited to give a lecture in Darmstadt, Germany, where they were celebrating their 10th anniversary of Saturday Morning Physics, which was inspired by our program," Dixon said. "This was an incredibly rewarding experience."

Ramberg expressed similar enthusiasm for science education.

"The Saturday Morning Physics caters to very dedicated students who use their Saturdays to come and study physics," Ramberg said. "Those kinds of dedicated students are exactly what we need in science. Science is a long haul, and it is important to be encouraged at the beginning to make that long haul."

Lockyer also recognized the work of eight other Fermilab volunteers who contribute to K-12 education programs at the lab, including the IMSA Student Research and Inquiry Program, visitor and student tours, and Saturday Morning Physics. They were Maurice Ball, AD: Brendan Kiburg, PPD; Jamieson Olsen, PPD; Bill Lee, ND; Mandy Rominsky, PPD; Jin-Yuan Wu, PPD; Jyotsna Osta, ND; Marc Weinberg, Florida State University.

Fermilab Education Program Leader Spencer Pasero said how much he appreciated all Fermilab's education volunteers.

"This year we had 264 people at Fermilab volunteer for programs in one way or another, which is just a great number," he told the crowd. "The teachers and kids tell us over and over again that what makes coming here special is meeting you guys."

This is the first time the selection committee chose two winners for the Director's Award, which is funded by Fermilab Friends for Science Education.

"You ask anybody at Fermilab to help with a tour with visitors or with Saturday Morning Physics or give a lecture, they always step forward," Lockyer said at the reception after handing out the awards. "I think that is just the desire of scientists in general to teach and to share what they are learning with everyone else. You see it in spades at Fermilab."

Rich Blaustein

In Brief

Open enrollment reminder, IRS increased 403(b) limits

Open enrollment for benefits takes place through Oct. 30. This is your opportunity to make changes to your medical, dental and flexible spending account elections for 2015. Changes made during open enrollment will be effective Jan. 1, 2015. For more information, refer to the all-hands email that was sent on Oct. 16.

IRS limits for 403(b) and catch-up contributions will increase in 2015. Effective Jan. 1, 2015, the annual 403(b) contribution will increase to $18,000. If you are over 50, you may contribute an additional $6,000 on a pre-tax basis to your 403(b). If you would like to make a change to your 403(b) contribution, go to FermiWorks to make your deferral change.

For more information, refer to the all-hands email that was sent on Thursday. The Benefits Office and your HR partner are available to answer your questions about open enrollment. Please email or call x3395 to make an appointment. You may also contact your division or section's assigned HR partner.

In the News

Physicists see potential dark matter from the Sun

From Nature, Oct. 17, 2014

An analysis of 12 years' worth of telescope data has found a signal that some physicists think could be the first detection of dark matter.

Astronomers have found variations in the stream of X-rays seen by a European Space Agency observatory that matches what would be expected if axions — a hypothetical dark-matter particle — were interacting with Earth's magnetic field.

Read more

Tip of the Week:
Ecology and Environment

Bringing discovery and ecology into accord

This high-quality wetland area south of Giese Road lies in the path of proposed LBNF construction, but it would be spared by diligent planning to avoid its destruction. Photo: Scott Kuykendahl, Planning Resources Inc.

Fermilab is known as a protector and friend of the environment. We have preserved and reconstructed more than 1,000 acres of tallgrass prairie over the last 40 years. But other communities must be protected as well to preserve the overall ecosystem. Another ecosystem that is just as endangered as prairies is wetlands.

When many people think of wetlands, they think of marshes, swamps and open water, but in fact, wetlands are more subtle than that. The legal definition of wetlands includes forested areas, shrub-scrub and wet meadows, which my be more or less dry at the surface, but support plant species that rely on saturated soils just below the surface.

As Fermilab moves into a new phase of constructing new experiments such as Muon g-2 and Mu2e and prepares for a future long-baseline neutrino facility (LBNF), it is more obvious than ever that construction often must be reconciled with various environmental protection issues. In many cases, that means conflict between building where we would like and protecting wetlands. We often perceive wetlands as thwarting our wishes to place a building, or even a parking lot, where we think (other things being equal) it makes the most sense.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers implements the Clean Water Act, which protects aquatic resources, including wetlands, from development where protection makes the most sense. How does this work? The standard way to evaluate wetland impacts is to require permit applicants first to do everything possible to avoid the impact, then to minimize any remaining unavoidable impacts before asking for a permit.

For example, in the case of LBNF, where there are compelling scientific reasons for placing the construction where it is planned, the Corps may agree that these impacts are unavoidable. In a case where another kind of development, such as an office building, hotel or a parking lot, is in question, they may say such impacts are not unavoidable, unless it can be argued that the proposed location is somehow necessary. For these kinds of development, the presumption is that an upland (non-wetland) area could be found for a construction site.

Even very small wetlands can be important in preserving biodiversity. Have you ever seen an egret or great blue heron hunting in a road ditch? These small, remnant wetlands, while they may not be impressive from our perspective, are important to preserving biodiversity, and the loss of hundreds of acres of small wetlands a tenth of an acre at a time, over time, have a profound effect on the ecosystem. It is important to keep these rare remnant communities in mind when planning the Fermilab of the future.

Rod Walton

Photos of the Day

Two perspectives on the praying mantis

A praying mantis pauses on its way across the pedestrian trail. Photo: Adam Bracero, TD
An up-close shot of a praying mantis shows its sinister side. Photo: Daniel Munger, AD

Today's New Announcements

Scottish country dance Halloween Party at Kuhn Barn - Oct. 28

Revamped Linux User Group meets Oct. 29

English country dancing - Nov. 9

Ask Me About FermiWorks booth in atrium - Oct. 27-29

Laboratory Directed R&D information sessions - Oct. 28

Muscle Toning by Bod Squad - register by Oct. 28

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

Managing Conflict - Nov. 5 (morning only)

Access 2010: Advanced - Nov. 12

Wilson Fellowship accepting applications through Nov. 14

University of Chicago Tuition Remission Program deadline - Nov. 24

Excel 2010: Advanced - Dec. 3

NALWO Playgroup meets Wednesdays at Users Center

OSX 10.10 Yosemite not yet certified

Pace Batavia Call-n-Ride service to Fermilab

English country dancing at Kuhn Barn

Indoor soccer

Hollywood Palms Employee Appreciation Day