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In this issue:
A Microscopic Solution to an Enormous Problem
Science Today: Single Positron Damping Ring for ILC
Healthier Options Await in the Kavli Building

SLAC Today

Thursday - August 10, 2006

A Microscopic Solution to an Enormous Problem

The experimental device at beamline 5-2, where Schiros and colleagues conduct much of their research, contains a suite of instrumentation that scientists use to study chemical processes on the atomic scale. (Click on image for larger version.)

Hydrogen—the most plentiful element in the Universe—could potentially meet much of the world's demand for energy while reducing or eliminating our dependence on carbon-based fuels. The promise of carbon-free energy has researchers hunting for better ways of isolating this plentiful element, but for all its abundance, hydrogen has proved prohibitively tricky to produce. One answer may lie in sunlight. By directly applying the sun's energy to water within a special solar cell, scientists are inching closer to making usable hydrogen.

"It's a materials issue," said SSRL researcher Theanne Schiros. "Hydrogen doesn't exist freely in nature, but with the right materials we can isolate it from other compounds."  Read more...

(Daily Column - Science Today)

Single Positron
Damping Ring for ILC

Surrounded by the beautiful mountains and bay of Vancouver, Canada, the damping ring group made an important decision during the recent International Linear Collider (ILC) Workshop VLCW06.

In the ILC damping rings, bunches of positrons or electrons are stored for a fraction of a second prior to being injected in the main accelerator. The damping rings squeeze the emittances of the bunches to prepare them for the final collision. To maximize the bunch storing capacity and luminosity, the damping rings of the ILC are typically very long and thus... expensive.

Until the Vancouver meeting, the baseline configuration design specified that the damping ring complex should consist of three rings, each 6 km long: two positron rings in a single tunnel and one electron ring. When this baseline was adopted in 2005, electron-cloud effects were of sufficient concern to make a single positron ring unattractive. Read more...

Healthier Options Await in the Kavli Building

(Image - Vending machines)
Are you thirsty for a Gatorade or some juice? Do you want a healthier snack? If so, a visit to the Kavli Building may be in your future. Two new vending machines offering slightly different drink and snack options have just been delivered to the first floor of the building. In addition to the usual fare, the machines are stocked with juices, sports drinks, pretzels and Cliff Bars.

The vending machines are located behind the Kavli Auditorium. You may either enter the building via the north entrance (near Loop Road) or via the door by the Research Office Building (ROB). If you choose the latter option, walk down the stairs, go to your right down the hall, and turn right again. If you get lost, just think of all the extra calories you're burning as you wander through SLAC's newest building!

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