SLAC Today is available online at:

In this issue:
Earth Day Celebration April 22
Dark Energy Camera Ready for Shipping to Chile

SLAC Today

Thursday - April 14, 2011

(Image -
The website provides tips for energy efficiency in everything from lightbulbs to automobiles, in addition to information on rebates and tax credits.

Earth Day Celebration April 22

April 22, 2011, marks the 41st anniversary of Earth Day. The Department of Energy's theme for this year's Earth Day is "Act Now: Together we can create a greener future." The theme recognizes that "awareness is good, but action is better."

Please join us to celebrate Earth Day in the Panofsky Auditorium Breezeway between 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. next Friday, April 22. Representatives from various industries and organizations will be on hand to promote green products and provide information on topics from native plants to LED lighting. You will also have the opportunity to check out the 2011 Motor Trend Car of the Year, the Chevrolet Volt.

In addition, at 12 p.m. in Panofsky Auditorium, there will be a special presentation by General Electric on energy-efficient lighting, and a representative from PG&E will be on hand to discuss PG&E's rebate programs.

Don't forget to put your name in for the raffle of a new Diamondback hybrid bicycle on your way out!

See Environmental Tips and Energy Savers for other actions you can take now to celebrate Earth Day every day.

A replica ring of the top-end of the Blanco telescope built at Fermilab to test assembly and operation of the dark energy camera before shipment to Chile. (Photo: Cindy Arnold, Fermilab.)

Dark Energy Camera Ready for Shipping to Chile

Building and installing one of the world' s largest digital cameras to solve the mystery of dark energy requires the collaboration of scientists and industry from across the globe. The Dark Energy Survey' s combination of survey area and depth will far surpass the scope of previous projects and provide researchers for the first time with four search techniques in one powerful instrument. More than 120 scientists are collaborating to determine the true nature of dark energy, the mysterious force that accelerates the expansion of the universe. Taking images of galaxies from the time the universe was only a few billion years old, the DES will trace the history of the expanding universe roughly three-quarters of the way back to the time of the Big Bang.

But first researchers needed to build the 570-megapixel camera at DOE's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory and make sure it works. Nearly all of the camera' s parts made their way to Fermilab for assembly and testing during the last 12 months. The components were assembled and operated on a full-size replica of the front end of the 4-meter Blanco telescope in Chile, built by Fermilab and Argonne National Laboratory. Testing finished successfully in February. During the next few months, physicists will be putting the finishing touches on pieces of the camera and shipping them to the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile where they will receive another round of tests before installation.

The high-tech supply chain tapped the expertise at four DOE Office of Science national laboratories and more than two dozen institutions and universities in the United States and abroad. More than 120 companies in the United States contributed know-how and parts. Fermilab took the lead in the assembly and testing of the camera and building a cryogenics system several times larger than those used in previous ground-based sky surveys, while Berkeley and Argonne national laboratories played key roles in the camera development. SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory took the lead in constructing a separate, small telescope with an infrared camera that will sit on a mountain near the Blanco telescope in a separate enclosure.

Read more from DOE Pulse...




 Lab Announcements

Community Bulletin Board


Lab Training

Upcoming Workshops & Classes


dividing line
(Office of Science/U.S. DOE Logo)

View online at