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In this issue:
The Sound of Science
Profile Today: Mike Hughes Gives It His All
Discount Commuter Passes Available

SLAC Today

Wednesday - July 19, 2006

This klystron can be viewed in SLAC's Visitor Center.

The Sound of Science

Heard the buzz in the klystron gallery? The sound stems from synchronized pulses of electrons accelerating through 240 klystrons. Unlike the more famous electrons down below in the linac, these electrons will never see the beamline. Instead they spend their short career generating pulses of microwave power at 2856 MHz, tens of thousands times higher levels than in your microwave oven.

To accelerate electrons traveling through the linac to nearly the speed of light, accelerator physicists need specialized devices to produce this high frequency power. "To get to 2856 MHz, you can't rotate your typical motor-generator at the incredible speed that would be required," says accelerator physicist Greg Loew. "You have to build a different gadget."

Enter the klystron, which transforms electrical energy from the lab's power lines into microwave energy. This microwave energy pushes the electron beam along, with each klystron adding more energy to the beam.   Read more...

(Weekly Column - Profile)

Hughes Gives It His All

(Image - Mike Hughes)SLAC carpenter Mike Hughes loves lending a helping hand. But for his volunteer work with the Gilroy Police Department, he's supposed to provide "eyes and ears" to protect his city.

Hughes is a VIP, a Volunteer in Policing, which means he can be alerted any time, day or night (when he's not at SLAC), to help the P.D., most often with directing traffic and manning barricades at an accident scene. VIPs commit to helping at least eight hours a month.

In addition to his policing work, Hughes and his wife Marlene, who celebrate their 40th anniversary next month, have been active volunteers in their community, coaching Little League and staffing the garlic bread booth at the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival to raise money for a local basketball team. Their two grown daughters are now volunteers, as well.  Read more...

Discount Commuter Passes Available

Due to high temperatures and increased levels of smog, this week has already included one Spare the Air day and three consecutive Flex Alert days.

In addition to limiting the use of electricity, now is a good time to limit driving. To encourage employees to take public transportation to and from work, the lab offers a Pre-Tax Transit Pass Purchase Program. The program allows benefits-eligible employees to purchase Caltrain passes and commuter checks with pre-tax dollars, up to $105 each month.

To participate, employees must fill out an application and send it to Lauren Barbieri at Mail Stop 11. Passes can then be picked up from her office at the end of each month.

"The train is a great place to relax by reading or working on a crossword puzzle," says Barbieri. "Then, at the Caltrain station in Palo Alto, you can either hop on the Marguerite or on your bike for the final few miles to SLAC."
Learn more...

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