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In this issue:
New Issue of symmetry Released
Science Today: Supersymmetry at Work for QCD
Photo of the Day: Guest House Celebration
International Science Grid This Week Releases First Issue

SLAC Today

Thursday - November 16, 2006

(Image - symmetry cover)

New Issue of symmetry Released Today

The most recent issue of symmetry hits virtual newsstands today. This month's issue highlights dorm life at physics labs around the world, the CERN Council Strategy Group's recent recommendations, International Linear Collider cryogenics and the Daya Bay neutrino experiment. The issue also includes photos from SLAC's Family Day.

You can read the magazine online, pick up a print copy at various locations around SLAC, or subscribe to the mailing list by filling out an online form.

(Daily Column - Science Today)

Supersymmetry at
Work for Quantum

Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) is the theory describing the interactions of quarks and gluons. One of the continuing mysteries of QCD is that quarks and gluons never appear in isolation. Instead, they are always confined into protons, pions, and other strongly interacting particles. Experiments here at SLAC and elsewhere have shown conclusively that particles with the properties of quarks are found inside the proton. We know this because we can compute the interactions of quarks at short distances using Feynman diagrams. But we do not have good mathematical tools to understand the long-distance forces that keep quarks confined.

There are other theories in which we can compute some aspects of the strong interaction responsible for quark confinement. These are theories with a special property called supersymmetry. Supersymmetry has been proposed as a part of the ultimate theory of nature. But even if it is not found in the real world, this symmetry has amazing properties that make some quantities of strongly coupled models with supersymmetry exactly calculable. It would be wonderful if we were able to benefit from this knowledge and translate some part of it to an improved understanding of QCD.

To realize this goal, many theorists are trying to construct precise paths that lead from QCD to a supersymmetric theory. Mikhail Shifman of the University of Minnesota and his collaborators gave a remarkable example: An important property of QCD in the real world is that quarks come in three colors and change their color by emission or absorption of a gluon. So, take QCD with gluons only, make the theory supersymmetric, and let the number of colors in the theory become large. Take QCD, without supersymmetry, with one flavor of quark, and let the number of colors become large. When this is done in a certain way, Shifman suggested, the two theories should be equivalent.

Photo of the Day: Guest House Celebration

(Image - Guest House celebration)
(Courtesy of Diana Rogers. Click on image to see more photos.)

Amidst sunny skies and red and white balloons, the former SLAC Guest House opened its doors on Wednesday with a new name: the Stanford Guest House. More than 200 visitors attended a re-christening open house that featured facility tours, complimentary lunch, and a prize raffle.

International Science Grid This Week Releases First Issue

(Photo - iSGTW debut)
International Science Grid This Week debuts today.

This morning, the worldwide science grid community launched International Science Grid This Week, a weekly publication reporting news and information about grid computing projects and collaborations, and the scientific research that uses grid computing technology.

The publication is the result of a collaboration between the Open Science Grid and Enabling Grids for E-sciencE projects.

"Scientists use grid computing today to fight disease, develop new semiconductors and study the origins of the universe," said Open Science Grid Executive Director Ruth Pordes. "We're proud to support a newsletter that will tell the story of the people and projects building grids around the world, and the scientists using them for discovery."

International Science Grid This Week builds on the success of its predecessor, Science Grid This Week, which focused on grid projects in the United States and their use in scientific research. The new publication will use articles, images, links and multimedia content to tell the story of scientific grid computing around the world.

Read the first issue of International Science Grid This Week and subscribe online.

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