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In this issue:
From the Operations Director: SLAC Subcouncils Team with Operations to Support SLAC Science
Calling All Softball Players
Word of the Week: Fermi Surface
The LHC Stars on Sunday's 60 Minutes

SLAC Today

Friday - September 26, 2008

From the Operations Director: SLAC Subcouncils Team with Operations to Support SLAC Science

(Photo - Alexander Merola)

It is only fitting that I begin my first Friday column by stating that the principle motivator of the Operations Directorate is to ensure the scientific competitiveness of SLAC in a safe and environmentally sound manner. Thus, it is imperative that priorities of the Operations Directorate be strongly coupled to the scientific priorities of the lab. The SLAC subcouncils are key to this alignment.

There are a number of ways in which Operations ensures a strong coupling to SLAC science. First, we participate in the creation of the SLAC/Department of Energy 10-year business plan. From that, the SLAC agenda is derived, reflecting senior management agreement as to how Operations can best serve SLAC's scientific mission. Where the rubber hits the road, SLAC subcouncils representing each of the directorates interface with Operations to align specific activities with the needs of SLAC scientists.

Subcouncils are a formal part of the SLAC Executive Council and will provide Operations leadership with user input about current and future activities—serving as a key source of user requirements and performance feedback. All major changes in service, infrastructure, policy and user procedures will be made in consultation with the subcouncils. Subcouncil members are expected to provide broad and thorough communication between members of their directorates and Operations.  Read more...

Calling All Softball Players


The Drell-Richter Trophy.

Last year at the annual SLAC softball game, the Accelerators clobbered the Researchers 38–10. Will they do it again? Come help decide this year's outcome at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 5. Everyone—accelerator physicists, researchers and anyone in between—is invited to play or cheer.

As always, the victorious team will receive the Drell-Richter Trophy, which honors the founding fathers of SLAC softball. Although the trophy has a decidedly particle physics history, everyone at SLAC is invited to battle to call it his or her own—until next year's game, that is.

Both teams welcome new players from all areas of the lab. Anyone interested in participating is encouraged to contact Mike Woods. Warm-ups start at 1:00 p.m. and the game begins at 2:00 p.m. at Roble Field on Stanford's main campus, with refreshments following the game.

More information is available at the SLAC Annual Softball Game Web site.

Word of the Week:
Fermi Surface

The Fermi surface is a theoretical concept used by physicists to predict the magnetic, electrical and optical properties of metals, semiconductors and other materials. It is an abstract concept, not representing a physical "surface." Rather, it is a uniquely shaped plane on a graph corresponding to specific properties of a material's electronic structure, such as the regularity of atomic arrangement and the occupation of energy bands.

The LHC Stars on Sunday's 60 Minutes


Panorama of CERN.
(Image courtesy of CERN.
Click for larger image.)

The 41st season premier of 60 Minutes will feature the Large Hadron Collider this Sunday, September 28, in a segment called "The Collider." The show, with 60 Minutes correspondent Steve Kroft, includes interviews with four U.S. scientists: Bob Stanek from Argonne, Monica Dunford from the University of Chicago, Steven Goldfarb from the University of Michigan and Steve Nahn from MIT, as well as James Gillies and Austin Ball from CERN.

60 Minutes airs on CBS at 7:00 p.m. PDT.

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