Today at Berkeley Lab

Beyond the Higgs Boson: A Detector Add-On Helps Scientists Look Deeper

ATLAS upgraded with new set of sensors to get closer to collisions. More>

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Surprisingly Strong Magnetic Fields Challenge Black Holes’ Pull

Analysis of radio waves from black holes shows long-neglected magnetic fields have an unexpected presence. More>

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DESI Collaboration Meeting Draws a Crowd

The goal is to map all of the northern extra-galactic sky to depths never before possible. More>

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Natalie Roe Recalls Early Career Boost in New ‘Panorama’ Diversity Series

A new series titled “Panorama: Many Voices, Many Perspectives” launches today as part of the Lab’s Diversity and Inclusion Initiative. The series will aim to highlight how issues around diversity and inclusion have played a role in people’s lives, as told by Lab employees. The inaugural piece features Natalie Roe, director of the Physics Division and a co-lead of the Initiative, recounting how a boost early on from two women physicists made all the difference in her career. Go here to read it. If you would like to tell your story for this series, e-mail Julie Chao.

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Lab Hosts Dark Matter Workshops

Earlier this month, Berkeley Lab hosted two gatherings of dark matter experts. More than 70 scientists attended the Institute for Nuclear and Particle Astrophysics Workshop on May 8, which featured talks on the latest in the hunt for dark matter, from theory to detector technology. The second workshop, May 9-10, hosted 26 members of the LUX collaboration, a group of scientists working on the Large Underground Xenon detector, the most advanced experiment yet in the search for dark matter. LUX is preparing for a new run this year, and the workshop set the tone for data processing and analysis to come. Here, members of the LUX collaboration gather outside Building 50C. (Photo by Carlo Faham)

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Lab Physicist Bob Jacobsen Named Interim Dean of Undergrad Studies

Berkeley Lab physicist and campus professor Bob Jacobsen has been named interim dean of Undergraduate Studies in the College of Letters and Science at UC Berkeley. His primary focus will be on improving the undergraduate education experience for L&S students. His current research is focused on a dark matter search detector located in the former Homestake Mine in South Dakota. More>

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Fung, Perlmutter Elected to American Philosophical Society

Berkeley Lab earth scientist Inez Fung, and physicist Saul Perlmutter were recently elected to be members of the American Philosophical Society. Founded in 1743, the society promotes “usefl knowledge in the sciences and humanities through excellence in scholarly research, professional meetings, publications, library resources, and community outreach. The group was founded by Benjamin Franklin and John Bartram.

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Birthday Symposium Honors Physicist David Nygren’s Research

Last week, more than 150 distinguished physicists from around the world gathered at Berkeley Lab’s ‘Art of Experiment’ symposium to honor the work of the Lab’s David Nygren on the occasion of his 75th birthday. Nygren (right, with retiree Bill Carithers) is known for many innovations in experimental physics, including his invention of the time projection chamber, a particle detector developed in the 1970s that enabled greater accuracy and 3-D analysis with unprecedented resolution of particle collisions. The symposium featured technical talks that ranged from rare-kaon decays and x-ray imaging for mammography to neutrino and dark matter detection.

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Checking the Prescription of Gravitational Lenses

Cosmologists are peering at the bright light from supernovae after it passes through the bending effects of massive galaxy clusters; and in so doing are able to measure the magnification— or prescription, so to speak — of these gravitational lenses. The independent findings of two teams were published in separate journals. One article is by the Supernova Cosmology Project, led by Berkeley Lab’s Saul Perlmutter; the other by the Cluster Lensing And Supernova survey with Hubble (CLASH), led by Marc Postman of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore. The teams measured the brightnesses of the lensed supernovae and compared them to the explosions’ intrinsic brightnesses to calculate how much they were magnified. One supernova appeared about twice as bright as would have been expected if not for the cosmic lens. More>

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Lab’s Carl Haber to Give “Future Fridays” Talk at Chabot Center on Saving Sound

image of carl haberListen to the earliest known sound recordings, learn how the process has changed throughout history, and what scientists are doing to restore our oldest relics. From the first sounds recorded by Thomas Edison in 1877 to the 1950s, when most recordings were made on wax, foil, shellac, lacquer and plastic, Berkeley Lab’s Carl Haber, experimental physicist, discusses the importance of preserving these treasures at Chabot Science Center’s Future Fridays talk on May 9 at 6:00 pm. For more information and tickets, go here.

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