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In this issue:
symmetry: Free for All
Science Today: Twist and Shout!
From the Travel Office: Travelport is Now Orbitz for Business

SLAC Today

Thursday - January 3, 2008

Image courtesy of Sandbox Studios.

symmetry: Free for All

The next big experiment in particle physics won't need an accelerator, detector, or other big machine. It doesn't even involve subatomic particles—unless you count the electrons that flow through electronic circuits, carrying bits of information from one human brain to the next.

Instead, it will test a new way to circulate the theories, methods, and experimental results that are the lifeblood of science.

If it works, no one will have to pay to read most particle physics results. The journals that publish most of the research in the field will be available free online to anyone, anywhere and any time. Money to run the journals—including the cost of having experts review each article before it sees print—would instead come from funding agencies, laboratories and libraries through a consortium called scoap3, the Sponsoring Consortium for Open Access Publishing in Particle Physics. This would give journals a stable source of funding while reducing the total cost to libraries and readers.  Read more in symmetry...

(Daily Column - Science Today)

Twist and Shout!

To understand physics at the CERN Large Hadron Collider (LHC), we will need to work much harder to compute cross sections for quark and gluon scattering. Gluon-gluon scattering reactions with momentum transfers above 100 GeV are expected to occur at the LHC at the rate of thousands per second. Even reactions with four or five recognizable jets of particles originating from quarks or gluons will be produced at such a high rate that we cannot record every event to permanent storage. The ease with which quarks and gluons can be radiated makes it difficult not only to study the Standard Model but also to search for new physics. We might hope to find the supersymmetric partners of quarks and gluons, or other types of new exotic particles, at the LHC. But the expected rate for producing supersymmetric particles is not so different from the rate for producing a W or Z boson plus four high-energy gluons, or a top quark pair plus two high-energy gluons. We had better understand these complex Standard Model processes well if we wish to model them successfully, and we will need those models to claim any discovery of new physics.

From the Travel Office: Travelport is Now
Orbitz for Business

SLAC's online booking tool for travel has a new name, Orbitz for Business. Your previous records with Travelport will still be accessible and the site will look essentially the same. Orbitz for Business is a full service online agency that offers many features and conveniences for SLAC travelers and travel arrangers, including:

- Receive Stanford negotiated discounts with United Airlines.

- Set up personal profiles to store personal information and preferences.

- Receive Care Alerts sent to the traveler, travel arranger and family members via cell phone, e-mail address or PDA with notification of flight changes and departure gates.

- Access all trip information under traveler's profile, to retrieve information for reimbursement and reporting purposes.

Jet Blue is now included in Orbitz for Business' flight matrix and Southwest Airlines will be included sometime in the second quarter of this year.


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