SLAC Today is available online at:
In this issue:
From the Director: SII Update
The School of New Science
Word of the Week: Linear Collider
Building the LCLS: Weekly Update

SLAC Today

Friday - March 28, 2008

(Photo - Persis Drell)

From the Director: SII Update

The SLAC Improvement Initiative is now six months old. Although the budgetary turmoil and the accompanying layoffs slowed our progress as we were distracted by the immediate crisis at hand, SII has continued to move forward and there are concrete improvement projects underway.

Recall that the SII is a process to improve the management structures and processes at SLAC to optimally support the scientific creativity and innovation that are the lifeblood of the lab. What we want is to be integrated as One Lab with coherent strategic and business planning for the lab as a whole. We want the processes by which we accomplish our mission to be consistent throughout the lab, we want to ensure that external and internal requirements are met, and we want Management Systems that will provide staff with the tools to do achieve the goals of the lab.  Read more...

The School of
New Science

The Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) will enable scientists to explore new chemical structures and processes. But before scientists grab the reins in this novel venture they'll have to go to school—Ultrafast X-Ray Summer School, that is.

The Ultrafast X-Ray Summer School, which is slated to run June 17–20, will hinge upon participant-oriented discussion and interaction focused on the state-of-the-art science that the LCLS will set in motion.

"There is a need to educate both senior scientists and younger scientists to generate a new class of researcher that will utilize this unique opportunity," Chairman Kelly Gaffney said. "And, for at least the next couple of years, this is the only place in the world it will be possible."

The LCLS has properties traditionally utilized in the laser community, but because it generates X-rays, it presents new opportunities. Techniques used in laser science and synchrotron X-ray science typically don't overlap—but the success of the LCLS will depend on the merging of these fields and the skill sets of each.

Word of the Week:
Linear Collider

A linear collider employs a linear accelerator to create two beams of accelerated particles that are smashed together, and the results of those collisions are measured by particle physics detectors. Unlike circular colliding-beam machines called storage rings—in which beams circulate repeatedly—a linear collider is a single-pass machine in which the beams collide only once. The world's only linear collider built so far, SLAC's Stanford Linear Collider (SLC) used the main linac to accelerate both electron and positron beams. It operated from 1989 until 1998 to study the Z-boson.

Building the LCLS: Weekly Update

Construction highlights from the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) this week include:

- The last truckload of support stands for the Undulator Hall from Argonne National Lab has been shipped, and will soon arrive at SLAC.

- Preparations are being made for the final concrete pour in the X-ray Tunnel and Far Experimental Hall.

- The Beam Transport Hall is receiving backfill around the exterior.


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