Today at Berkeley Lab

Recent Appointments Position ATAP to Pursue New Scientific Opportunities

David Robin has been named Advanced Light Source Upgrade Project Director, and Fernando Sannibale will head ALS Accelerator Physics. An Accelerator Modeling Program has been created, headed by Jean-Luc Vay. Soren Prestemon takes over the Berkeley Center for Magnet Technology as Steve Gourlay becomes Program Director for the new U.S. Magnet Development Program. More>

Lab Assists Kazakhstan With Construction of Particle Accelerator

Joe Kwan with the Accelerator & Fusion Research Division will assist with design and technology transfer for the machine, which will begin construction in 2015. More>

André Anders Named Editor-in-Chief for Journal of Applied Physics

Appointment for physicist in the Accelerator and Fusion Research Division who leads the Plasma Applications Group is effective July 1. More>

A Path Toward More Powerful Tabletop Accelerators

Laser light needn’t be as precise as previously thought to drive new breed of miniature particle accelerators.

Four Lab Scientists Receive DOE Early Career Awards

Four Berkeley Lab scientists are among the 35 researchers selected by the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Science to receive significant funding for research as part of DOE’s Early Career Research Program. Lab awardees include (clockwise) the Chemical Sciences Division’s Rebecca Abergel, the Accelerator and Fusion Research Division’s Daniele Filippetto, the Material Sciences Division’s Alexander Weber‐Bargioni, and the Life Sciences Division’s Trent Northen. The effort, now in its fifth year, is designed to bolster the nation’s scientific workforce by providing support to exceptional researchers during the crucial early career years, when many scientists do their most formative work. More>

BELLA Wins Secretary of Energy’s Achievement Award

BELLA, the Berkeley Laboratory Laser Accelerator Project, the world-record-setting laser system and state-of-the-art scientific facility for the advancement of laser plasma acceleration research, has won a DOE Secretary’s Achievement Award. The project team behind BELLA, which in 2012 delivered a petawatt of power in a pulse just 40 femtoseconds long at a pulse rate of one hertz – one pulse every second, was commended by Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz for “for outstanding ingenuity and exceptional project performance.” On hand to receive the award at the recent DOE Project Management Workshop were Wim Leemans of AFRD, who is BELLA’s Project Director, and Sergio Zimmermann of Engineering, who is the Project Manager (second and first from left, respectively). Also pictured are Suzanne Suskind, FPD; David Klaus, Deputy Under Secretary for Management and Performance; and Ted Lavine, SC Program Manager.

AFRD’s Schenkel Participates in Kavli Roundtable on Future of Silicon

Thomas Schenkel imageThomas Schenkel of the Accelerator and Fusion Research Division was among several experts who participated in a roundtable discussion on “The Next Life of Silicon,” hosted by the Kavli Foundation. The panelists looked at such topics as other electrical properties that could be exploited in silicon, its role in quantum computing, how silicon compares to other materials, and possible breakthroughs in the coming years. Schenkel’s research group is developing technologies to build quantum computers, in which silicon would play a role. More>

Talk on Using Windows Azure as Technical Computing Platform

Wenming Ye of Microsoft will give a talk on Windows Azure: Microscoft’s Cloud Platform on Monday, March 31, from 3 to 5 p.m. in Building 2-100B. While enterprises have enjoyed the benefits of Windows Azure, the general research and scientific computing communities are just getting familiar with the platform. With the availability of IAAS Linux, Hadoop, IPython Notebooks, F#, Microsoft’s cloud platform offers researchers the convenience to collaborate and share their research online. In this talk, Ye will demonstrate the readiness of the crucial Big Compute and Big Data enabler technologies on Windows Azure for researchers, and the availability of Windows Azure for research grant programs.

AFRD’s Andre Anders Wins Dyke Award

Andre Anders, who leads the plasma applications group for the Accelerator and Fusion Research Division, has won the 2014 Dyke Award from the International Symposia on Discharge and Electrical Insulation in Vacuum (ISDEIV), the highest honor that organization bestows. Anders is receiving a lifetime achievement award. Anders conducts research in plasma physics and material science, including coatings and thin film synthesis, high power impulse magnetron sputtering, cathodic vacuum arc plasma and ion sources, gas plasma sources, ion implantation, and plasma immersion ion implantation, transparent conducting oxides, and electrochromic materials. He will receive his award and cash prize at the next ISDEIV, which will be held this fall in Mumbai, India.

Does Antimatter Fall Up? Lab’s Fajan Provides an Answer

[Slate Magazine] A response to the question, “If you drop antimatter, which way does it fall?” quotes Joel Fajans of the Lab’s Accelerator and Fusion Research Division. If one could conduct with antimatter an experiment such as Galileo did when he dropped balls off Italian towers, Fajans says: “That would be the greatest revolution in physics in the past 20 to 30 years.” Bigger than the discovery of the Higgs boson? “Oh yeah, no question. There’s a very low probability but an enormous reward if antimatter were to gravitate differently than we expect.” More>