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In this issue:
SPEAR3 Annual Shutdown Begins
People Today: David Paneque in Free Fall
SSRL Delivers
Conservation Tip of the Week

SLAC Today

Wednesday - August 20, 2008

SPEAR3 Annual Shutdown Begins

View inside the SSRL accelerator tunnel. (Click for larger image.)

August 11 marked the beginning of the annual shutdown for SPEAR3, the Positron Electron Accelerating Ring at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory. For three months each year, the SPEAR storage ring is powered down to accommodate scheduled maintenance and upgrades. This year the schedule will be as busy as ever.

The primary accelerator activity will be the replacement of much of the booster-to-SPEAR transport line, or BTS, which carries new beam from the injector to the storage ring during current refills. The goal is to remove several vacuum windows that segregate the very rough vacuum in the majority of the BTS from the high vacuum in both the booster and in SPEAR. This BTS configuration dates back to the very beginning of SPEAR operations in the early 1970s, when SPEAR was filled using the SLAC linac. Removing the vacuum windows will increase the efficiency of the injector.

The main shutdown tasks for SPEAR also include installing a new Beamline 14; further work preparing for top-off injection (which will allow SSRL to maintain nearly constant current at 500 milliamps); and the seismic retrofitting of Building 120.

These maintenance and upgrade projects are slated for completion in early October, with users returning on November 10.

(Weekly Column - Profile)

David Paneque in Free Fall

(Photo by Calla Cofield. Click for larger image.)

On his days off, David Paneque enjoys a beautiful view, a cool breeze through his hair, and a free fall from 14,000 feet. Paneque is earning his group certification in skydiving. He has jumped more than 30 times this year.

Spinning, flipping and tracking as he falls, Paneque is improving his technique and learning to control his movements. "It's like driving," he says. "You get used to moving with the air. The goal is to be able move precisely without thinking." He is working toward his certification to jump with other skydivers, who together make formations and perform stunts. "In the beginning it's challenging," he continues. "When you approach the door of the plane, some part of you is saying 'Why the hell are you doing this? Get away from that door right now!' It's challenging learning to control your fears."

Paneque enrolled in a skydiving class in 2007, and began jumping regularly in 2008. He makes his jumps over some wide open spaces near Byron, a little more than an hour west of Menlo Park. But he made his first tandem jump over Girona, Spain, in 2001, much closer to his hometown of Barcelona. Since leaving home, Paneque has also lived in Munich, Germany, where he worked as a PhD student then as a post doctoral researcher with the Major Atmospheric Gamma-ray Imaging Cherenkov Telescope. He joined SLAC in 2006 as a research associate working on the Gamma Ray Large Area Space Telescope. After living in so many different places, Paneque is making a home for himself at SLAC. "Do the work you want to do, and be surrounded by people you feel comfortable with," he says. "The rest is just details."  Read more...

SSRL Delivers

(Photo - SSRL Beamline 13)
Light shines into Beamline 13.

In the 12 months preceding the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory's annual downtime, SSRL delivered 5027 of 5177 scheduled hours of beam. This 97.1 percent of beam time delivered is quite a feat considering all it takes to run the machine. In addition, the laboratory also generated first light at Beamline 13 and installed a new microprobe at Beamline 2-3. Congratulations to everyone involved in these accomplishments!

Conservation Tip of the Week

Before I left more than two weeks ago on personal travel, I was informed of the Department of Energy Review Board's approval for SLAC to begin a Detailed Energy Survey. The survey is part of the Super Energy Savings Performance Contracting process, or ESPC, administered by the Federal Energy Management Program. Simply put, ESPC is a way of paying for energy savings projects with the dollars they save.

This past year, SLAC Facilities, together with the Stanford Site Office, has been working toward identifying energy conservation measures to help achieve the energy and water reduction goals set forth by Secretary Bodman’s Transformative Energy Action Management Initiative, DOE Order 430.2B and Executive Order 13423. As part of the approved energy survey, SLAC will be studying nine areas of potential savings, including lighting systems and controls, hot water system boiler controls, chilled water distribution and pumping controls, low-conductivity water distribution and pumping, water efficient fixtures, as well as building-specific advanced metering. Other areas SLAC will study as we go through this process are: environmental control systems re-commissioning, HVAC duct sealing, and renewable energy systems such as photo-voltaic, solar thermal and daylighting controls.  Read more...

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