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In this issue:
Heads or Tails? Both Win at B Factory Book Meeting
Preparing for Wildland Fire Season
Need Extra Help this Summer? HR has extended the requisition deadline for the Youth Opportunity Program!
Summer Project Management Training Starts This Week

SLAC Today

Tuesday - June 1, 2010

Heads or Tails?
Both Win at B Factory Book Meeting

(Photo - B factory book editors toss a coin at KEK)
KEK co-editor Bruce Yabsley (right) holds up the special German coin while BaBar co-editor Soeren Prell (left) stands ready to call "heads" or "tails." (Photo courtesy the editors of The Physics of B-Factories.)

The Physics of B-Factories, a first-of-its-kind anthology of the B factory particle physics done by SLAC's BaBar experiment and the Belle experiment at KEK in Japan, is well on its way to completion. Last year the book's editors held their first meeting at SLAC, and in late May they reunited for a second meeting at the KEK facility. The group discussed the progress and organization of the massive project, and used an unusual method to answer a long-standing question.

For more than a decade, Belle and BaBar raced alongside each other to explore the subatomic world of B meson physics. The experiments simultaneously uncovered experimental evidence to support a theory that could partly explain why the matter we are made of is still around today (matter/antimatter asymmetry). This discovery made it possible for the theorists Makoto Kobayashi and Toshihide Maskawa to share the 2008 Nobel Prize in physics (along with Yoichiro Nambu). Now that the BaBar detector has completed its experimental run, and Belle is set for a possible upgrade, the two collaborations have come together to put their collective knowledge into a comprehensive book, which they hope will benefit future generations of physicists.  Read more...

(Photo)
"Disking" uses a tractor to plow grass and brush into the ground, creating a bare strip that fire has difficulty crossing. (Photo by Julie Karceski.)

Preparing for Wildland Fire Season

Recent rains might give a different impression, but fire season is coming soon. The area around SLAC averages of about 16 inches of annual rainfall. This year, though, rainfall has surpassed 20 inches, resulting in a luxurious growth of grass and brush. Ironically, this extra rain and lush plant life can actually worsen fire risk. Once dried, this vegetation can present a severe fire threat.

SLAC guards against the threat of wildfire by having landscapers provide extensive weed cutting around heavily traveled areas, such as near roads and buildings, and by "disking" strips adjacent to SLAC boundaries. Disking uses a tractor to plow grass and brush into the ground, creating a bare strip that fire has difficulty crossing. These barriers are effective in preventing small fires from traveling onto or off of SLAC property. These vegetation control activities are conducted by SLAC Facilities Contractors in May and June, before the grass and brush get too dry to cut safely.  Read more...

Need extra help this summer?

HR has extended the requisition deadline for the Youth Opportunity Program!

If your department could use extra office help this summer, fill out a requisition today and send it to Christine Green in the Human Resources Department. We have students who are eager to work at SLAC. They are part of the SLAC Youth Opportunity Program, a 10-week work program (June 14 to August 20) for students between the ages of 18 and 22. This is a great program that provides summer help to SLAC while giving students from families in need added income and the opportunity to enhance their job skills. HR shares the cost!

For more information about YOP, see the Youth Opportunity Program Web site.

Summer Project Management Training Starts This Week

Project management requires the development of special technical skills to achieve all project goals and objectives within the constraints of scope, schedule and budget. SLAC's Project Management Office offers two quarterly course series designed to help develop these technical skills. The summer quarter is around the corner; project and control account managers are encouraged to register now to attend the June and July classes.

Project Management Training I, Session One covers the basics for projects budgeted under $20M. The first session covers the fundamentals of project scheduling and risk management, as well as an introduction to Microsoft Project and SLAC's P-Track database for tracking project performance. Project Management Training I, Session Two goes into more depth on establishing project baselines and tracking status, with hands-on training in MS Project and P-Track.

The Project Management II course prepares project and control account managers for the requirements of projects over $20M or funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The course introduces SLAC project teams to the processes, procedures, standards, objectives and policies associated with SLAC's certified earned value management system and provides detailed information about risk management, recording and analysis.

For specific dates and training locations, please see the PMO Training Calendar on the PMO SLACSpace site. For questions and course registration, please contact Ruth McDunn (x2014) or Liz Dahlen (x4776).

Fordern und Fördern (Challenge and Support)
—PMO motto

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