Benefits, Training, Employment & More
Lab Delights Users with Polarized Beam
Sec. Richardson Names Senior Policy Advisor
- Crosswalk, Speed Bumps Join Stop Signs on Accelerator Site
- Website Adds Lab In-house Events Page
- Tang Accepts New R&D Position at Brookhaven
RadCon Programs Earn "Excellent"
Round the Clock
Program deputies work 2-week shifts; keep accelerator running, monitor experiments
by James Schultz
Grass goes uncut. Dirty dishes accumulate. Weekends blur into workweeks. Then there's a large, cumbersome cell phone to lug around, one with electronic innards powerful enough to muscle through the Lab's incessant electromagnetic noise.
For two weeks, 24 hours a day, JLab Program Deputies, or PDs, have little in the way of a personal life. The deputies, members of the Accelerator Division, are on call to oversee and troubleshoot the accelerator and the experiments in all three halls. Among the two-week job requirements are establishment of accelerator goals and priorities, publication of the detailed accelerator program, schedule preparation for each shift and review and approval of test plans conducted when beam isn't delivered to one or more halls due to maintenance or repair.
"It's a 24-hour-a-day job," says Paul Rutt, a staff scientist with the Injector Group who in the last 12 months has twice worked as a PD. "That's not to say you don't get six hours or so of sleep a night."
The toll can be taken as early as 6 a.m., with the PD's phone call to the owl shift crew chiefs to determine accelerator and research status. When the program deputy arrives at the Lab, sometime after 7, in-person meetings with users (visiting experiment teams) usually occur. By 8 a.m., the PD runs a 50-person briefing that reviews the previous 24 hours, with details provided from each shift. A list is presented of what's scheduled in each hall for the next 24 hours. If necessary, task groups are also set up to solve technical or equipment problems. The rest of the morning can be spent attending to the details associated with accelerator operation.
Experiments may require different energy levels, for example, which can require beam recalibration. At other times, the machine must be taken off-line for scheduled maintenance, or to repair malfunctioning parts or subsystems. It is during such times that PDs turn to test plans.
Test plans are opportunities to check non-beam components of the accelerator apparatus, including the power supply of the steering magnets, examination of optical systems and certain measurements of the beam injector. Because improvements and upgrades are constantly being made, either to accelerator hardware or to the software that controls it, the test plans are a means to acquire valuable information about equipment function.
"The program deputy's job is to make sure that whatever the machine's capabilities, they are efficiently used at all times," Rutt points out. "Ideally, we get beam to the users all the time. If not, and with the exception of a widespread power outage, there's always something useful we can do."
Come afternoon, it's time to devise shift plans for each of the control-room operator groups for the next day's shifts. It is then, says Rutt with a smile, that the PD's famed ability to provide tasty treats for the hard-working operators comes to the fore. "We have great operators, professional and attentive. They're a real pleasure to work with," he says. "They really like program deputies who feed them well. The operators are even more charming when they're well fed."
A Pre-emptive Strike
If there's a secret to surviving the two weeks of PD duty, it may be in one's ability to anticipate difficulties. As afternoon gives way to evening and then to night, Rutt says program deputies typically check in with users and operators several times before going to bed. While there's no guarantee that a deep sleep won't be interrupted by a phone call, a potential problem can be nonetheless pre-empted.
Helping the program deputies stay in touch is a relatively large cell phone known to habitués as the Brick. A beefed-up version of its smaller cell-phone cousins, the Brick has the requisite power to deal with the electronic interference that otherwise plagues smaller models.
"You have this cumbersome appendage for two weeks," Rutt observes. "You go to the bathroom - it's with you. You go to a dinner - it's with you. You take your kids to the movies - it's with you. At the end of two weeks you're ready to hand it to somebody else."
Rutt originally came to the Lab in 1989 shortly after completing his Masters in physics from Michigan State University. He remained at the Lab through his doctoral studies at William & Mary. Then it was on to Rutgers University in 1993, where he remained until he returned here in 1995, this time as a user overseeing construction of a key piece of Hall A equipment. In 1996, he was co-spokesman for the Lab's first polarized beam experiment. He joined the Lab as a staff scientist in November 1997.
"It's been a delightful transition," Rutt says. "I've gone from being a beam user to actually helping to provide beam. It's given me a chance to work on things from another perspective. It's really very satisfying."
Benefits, Training, Employment & More
Check out the new HR&S information center near you
Human Resources & Services has assembled information centers throughout the Lab for the convenience of staff.
These information centers are located in CEBAF Center (2nd floor, outside the computer center), the MCC conference room, and the ARC Library. Human Resources staff check the centers weekly, keeping them up-to-date and fully stocked. These centers are designed to be user friendly and should be particularly convenient during periods such as benefits open enrollment and performance appraisal time, according to Ruben Pedroza, HR Special Projects Administrator.
Types of information located at the HR&S information center near you include: employment information and forms, benefits information, employee relations material, and staff development and training information and forms. A reference copy of the Jefferson Lab Employee Handbook and the Benefits Reference Book are at each center.
"Every effort has been made to include all of the forms and information most often requested," Pedroza said. "But, we need your input to help us make these resource centers most useful to you. Please let us know what other information or forms you would like us to add." Send your electronic mail to Pedroza (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your thoughts and suggestions.
Lab Delights Users With Polarized Beam
Attend seminars: Find out what it is, why it's important!
Jefferson Lab's polarized electron beam has been delighting users since April with high levels of beam polarization and current, and with exceptionally high polarized source operational "up" time.
The Lab has excelled at improving the operational life of its polarization source, according to Charles Sinclair, Injector Group Leader. "And, we've got good current and polarization - performance is getting better and better," he said. Increasing the life of the polarized source helps experiments run more quickly and reduces maintenance time and costs.
The Lab's polarized beam began operation in April with the highly-successful parity violation and GEp experiments in Hall A, Sinclair explained. These two experiments used high average currents and ~ 40% polarization. More recently, the Lab has been delivering polarization above 70% with lower beam currents. Polarization as high as 78% has been delivered. The polarized source operational lifetime is above 1,000 hours at these high polarizations.
Users have been very happy with the polarized beam; and with the feedback they've given the Lab, staff members have identified ways to make it even better - higher polarization at higher current and with even longer operational lifetime. "We've gotten great feedback from our users on the nature of the beam," explained Injector scientist, Paul Rutt. "Working together, we've been able to use this information to improve the beam quality so the experiments can run more efficiently."
The Lab is working to further improve its polarized beam capabilities on several fronts. The Injector Group is developing new photocathodes with the goal of boosting polarization above 80%, and on a new polarized beam injector designed to increase beam lifetime at higher current levels.
Polarized beam is an area of increased importance in the user community and the Lab is committed to developing and expanding its polarized beam capabilities. To address this technology and its importance at the Lab, Staff Development & Training has scheduled a series of seminars on polarized beam, geared for the non-scientist. The first one was Dec. 18 with Sinclair tackling the question, "What's a Polarized Beam, Anyway?"
Seminars scheduled for January include: Jan. 15, Chris Keith "Hitting a Solid Target;" Feb. 5, Joe Mitchell "Polarized Targets;" and on Feb. 19, Allison Lung explaining why polarized beam is critical to the science we do here. Each of these seminars will begin at 3 p.m. in the ARC auditorium.
Helms Announces Retirement
Career culminates with JLab, 32 years of federal service
Dean Helms, the DOE Site Office Manager for Jefferson Lab is retiring after 32 years of federal service.
Helms leaves behind a distinguished career marked by recognition and many special awards and a project he nurtured from construction to successful operation - Jefferson Lab.
Since 1988, Helms has been responsible for the Department of Energy's oversight of Jefferson Lab. In the early stages of construction, he was there to help Jefferson Lab over the rough spots with DOE - paving the way for a DOE/laboratory relationship that is the envy of many.
Prior to his assignment at Jefferson Lab, Helms held a number of positions in DOE Headquarters including Chief of Staff to the Undersecretary of Energy (1987-1988). In that role, he provided management support to the Under Secretary who was the Chief Operating Officer of the Department. Earlier DOE Headquarters assignments include Deputy Director of Administration and Director of Organization and Management Systems. During his career, Helms also held positions in the Savannah River and Albuquerque DOE Operations Offices.
One of Helm's toughest challenges was his recent assignment at DOE's Brookhaven National Laboratory where he served as Executive Manager for the DOE Office from May 1997 to July 1998. In that role, Helms successfully led the transition efforts to replace the management and operating contractor at the lab and implemented broadly-scoped management improvements, including enhanced environmental, health and safety systems and community involvement programs.
Helms has been recognized by the Department of Energy for his many contributions with the Presidential Meritorious Executive award, the Vice President's Hammer award he shares with Jefferson Lab, two Secretary of Energy Gold Medals and numerous Special Service awards.
When asked what he will miss most about his work, Helms replied, "There is no question that the thing I will miss most will be the professional and personal relationships with my friends and colleagues within the DOE family including many long-term associates in the Department and in our laboratories. Obviously, I will also greatly miss the excitement of Jefferson Lab where so many great things are happening as well as the challenge of helping the Laboratory be the best it can be."
Sec. Richardson Names Senior Policy Advisor
At the beginning of December, Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson designated Dr. Robin Staffin as his Senior Policy Advisor for Science and Technology.
Currently, Dr. Staffin is serving as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Development in the Department of Energy's Office of Defense Programs. The new position follows through on Secretary Richardson's desire to build on the department's position as one of the world's premier science and technology organizations.
"Maintaining the Department of Energy's world leadership as a catalyst of scientific discovery and technological innovation is one of my top priorities," said Secretary Richardson. "Robin Staffin is a highly respected physicist who combines unusually broad scientific expertise with an outstanding record of public service. And he is committed to the Clinton administration's policy of 'science in service to society.' Robin's counsel and vision are ideally suited to helping the department focus its research and development efforts on the scientific challenges to be met in the new millennium."
At DOE, Staffin has had principal responsibility for the science program and research and development base of the Stockpile Stewardship program - the department's comprehensive effort to use cutting-edge, science-based methods to ensure the safety, security and reliability of the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile without underground testing.
Prior to his tenure at DOE, Staffin served as special assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy, providing counsel on U.S. technology infrastructure, international science and technology programs and nonproliferation issues.
While at DOE's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory from 1981-1993, Staffin's many contributions ranged from innovative scientific investigation in laser physics, optics and fusion, to laboratory-wide strategic planning, following his work on the staff of the congressional Office of Technology Assessment.
Staffin earned his bachelor of science degree in physics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and his doctoral degree in theoretical particle physics from Stanford University. While at Stanford, Staffin worked at the DOE's Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. He was also a postdoctoral research fellow at the Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.
Open Letter to Jefferson Lab
As many of you are aware, I will be retiring from the Department of Energy (DOE) on January 2, 1999. It has been my great pleasure to work with you over the last ten and a half years to build and operate this extraordinary research facility that we call Jefferson Lab.
Jefferson Lab is the product of a unique partnership of many organizations and people who have had a common vision and will to succeed. As a member of the DOE Site Office team that participated in this partnership, I am extremely proud of what has been accomplished through our cooperative efforts. Jefferson Lab is now prominently featured on the world's scientific map while being recognized as a "good neighbor" in our local and regional communities. As our users begin to uncover many of the secrets of nature's most fundamental building blocks and we look forward to initial operations of the Free Electron Laser in the very near future, the outlook for the future is extremely bright.
As with any successful venture of this size and complexity, there is no substitute for strong leadership, commitment, and a highly talented and motivated team. Jefferson Lab has had the benefit of these qualities and more. The Department of Energy has provided policy guidance and funding while the Commonwealth of Virginia, the City of Newport News, the Department of Navy, industry and many others have contributed valuable resources and other forms of support. SURA has rendered the corporate sponsorship and vision that have enabled the Laboratory to meet its objectives. Within the Lab, special recognition must be directed to Hermann Grunder and the Director's Council for their unparalleled levels of leadership, inspiration, and energy that have guided and sustained the collective efforts of so many for so long. Finally, the magnificently gifted Jefferson Lab scientific, technical, and support staff has established an extraordinary reputation by consistently delivering on challenging commitments and often performing miracles when the chips were down. To see all of these individuals and organizations blend their efforts in such a harmonious manner to achieve a common goal has been one of the true highlights of my career.
In closing, I salute the DOE community including my many colleagues at DOE Headquarters and the DOE Oak Ridge Operations Office who have played such a vital role in the Jefferson Lab success story. My warmest expressions of admiration and appreciation are reserved for the local Jefferson Lab Site Office staff for their enormous support to me and their many valuable contributions, unwavering dedication, and incredible sense of humor over the years. They are a terrific group!
With pride, I look forward to many, many more Jefferson Lab successes in the future.
"Beamingly" and with best regards,
K. Dean Helms, Manager Jefferson Lab Site Office
Costpoint Addresses Lab Needs
Gives account managers more flexibility, quicker access to data
Jefferson Lab successfully converted to a new project-based, financial tracking system in November.
The new system, called Costpoint, is used by Business Services to take care of the Lab's accounting and procurement functions such as accounts payable, billing, travel, procurements, etc.
Costpoint also gives Cost Account managers a more timely and efficient tool for managing their budgets, according to Sharon Parkinson, Costpoint Transition Team chair.
This was the first change made to the Lab's nearly 15-year-old financial tracking program. The need for a better system was identified during the 1996 Administrative Peer Review. The Costpoint Transition Team was formed in January 1997. One of the team's charges was to ensure the new account structure used with Costpoint met Cost Account manager needs.
The team spent the first year performing that task, studying the Costpoint modules, and identifying programming changes. Once the Transition Team completed the preliminary work, they continued to work closely with the Business Services Team chaired by Mark Waite as they began setting up the Costpoint modules and screens for the Business Services functions.
For the last several months, Costpoint has been running parallel to the older Deltek accounting program. This allowed Business Services and the Computer Center staff to test, identify, and fix potential problem areas while preparing to implement Costpoint throughout the Lab.
To help Lab staff with the transition, two training sessions held early in December, covered the new accounting structure, and reviewed the purchase requisitions system (REQ) and the employee time sheets system (ETR).
The move to Costpoint will be nearly invisible to much of the staff; we will continue to enter and access data through various local area network 'db1' programs: REQS, ETR, STOCK, etc. as we have in the past, Parkinson explained. The most noticeable difference between Deltek and Costpoint is the accounting structure.
Tracking is no longer through an account number and transaction code, but through a Project, Organization, and Account (POA). If you are filling out an electronic form and need a listing of valid projects, organizations or accounts, you can access them by using the "more" key (the period key on most keyboard keypads).
"Use the system; let us know about problems you encounter so we can work them. Tell us what your needs are," Lyn Wells said during staff training.
Contact points for the Accelerator Division are Wells and Chris Holdzkom; Administration: Elizabeth Lawson; Physics: Mike Syptak; Computer Center: Mark Davis; and for the Director's Office: Sharon Parkinson.
Crosswalk, speed bumps join Stop signs on accelerator site
Speed bumps and a crosswalk will be installed on the Accelerator site at the request of Accelerator Division Associate Director, Christoph Leemann.
The speed bumps will be installed and a crosswalk will be painted on CEBAF Blvd., in the vicinity of building 89 and the Central Helium Liquifier (CHL). Leemann feels these additions will enhance safety in that area.
The work is scheduled to begin after the holidays, according to Tom Briggs, Plant Engineering's chief of Structural Maintenance and Service.
The stop signs will stay at the intersection of CEBAF Blvd. and the Machine Control Center (MCC) access road. The speed bumps will be removable, like the speed bump at the Guard Shack, so they won't interfere with moving cryomodules on CEBAF Blvd.
Website adds Lab in-house events page
Catch up on in-house Jefferson Lab social and staff events by visiting a new spot on the Lab's news web page at www.jlab.org/news/.
Go to the lower left corner of the news web page (On Site Only) and select Lab Events. Or you may go to it directly at: www.jlab.org/news/labevents/.
At your convenience, browse through the photos and stories of in-house Laboratory events and social activities placed there. The site currently includes photos and highlights from the November 17 Service Awards Ceremony and the December 5 Children's Holiday Festival.
Due to limited space in the Lab's monthly newsletter, it isn't always possible to cover these events in ON TARGET. Public Affairs can now use the web page to share this information with Lab staff and users. If there's an event or activity you would like to see on the Lab Events web page, call Linda Ware, ext. 7689.
Tang accepts new R&D position at Brookhaven
Johnny Tang, Accelerator Division computer scientist, recently accepted a new job at Brookhaven National Lab.
He started work at Brookhaven, November 25, as an advanced computer analyst - working Research & Development for the control system of the next-generation neutron scattering facility. The Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) is a Department of Energy multi-laboratory project. Argonne, Brookhaven, Lawrence Berkeley, Los Alamos and Oak Ridge National Laboratories are involved in the design and construction of the SNS, which is scheduled for completion in 2005.
While Tang is very excited about the new challenges facing him, he recently said, "It was very hard for me to leave Jefferson Lab and Williamsburg, where I was living. I miss all the friendships I enjoyed in Virginia. After working for Jefferson Lab for almost 10 years, I needed a new project - a new challenge. I will return to Virginia someday."
Tang's new e-mail address is email@example.com and his phone number is (516)344-5175. Good luck Johnny!
The CEBAF Center lobby boasts a new display cabinet that was delivered December 1. The Public Affairs Office is slowly upgrading the exhibits in the lobby and the display case was the next step. The current display features antique instruments used in the quest to understand electrons and electricity. The instruments are on loan from Vanderbilt University's extensive collection of old instruments. Here Fred Dylla, FEL Program Manager, places an antique prism in the new display case.
RadCon Programs Earn "Excellent"
Review team commends Lab's radiation protection program
The Radiation Control Group recently earned high marks during a review of the Lab's Radiation Protection Program.
The external review was conducted by experts in the management and practice of radiation control from Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and Battelle, Pacific Northwest Labs.
The purpose of the biennial review was to evaluate how well the Lab's radiation control (RadCon) program is meeting federal, state and local regulations and requirements. A short list of the areas evaluated included radiation worker training, dosimetry, work controls and workplace monitoring, environmental monitoring, record keeping and reporting, and radioanalytical services and quality assurance.
The review team rated the Lab's RadCon program as "excellent." Their report indicated no discrepancies or Findings - meaning they found nothing that could cause noncompliance with Federal regulations (specifically Code of Federal Regulation 10CFR835). In addition, they cited 11 Noteworthy Practices - "referring to activities that are exemplary in their effectiveness in sustaining radiation protection for the employees, the public or the environment."
The review team heard presentations on the organization and operational practices of the RadCon Group (RCG), toured the accelerator and experimental facilities and spent time reviewing documentation and discussing field operations with Lab staff.
The review team described the RCG as a "high quality, organized, skilled, and dedicated team of professionals...recognized by the Lab as providing a valuable service and often going beyond the scope of work required for radiation protection."
Further, they reported that the Lab's radiation control program not only meets all federal, state and local requirements, but meets best industry practices as applicable to the Lab and contributes to overall worker safety.
Bob May, Radiation Control Group Head, said, "We are pleased with the outcome of the review. It was a thorough review by radiological control and program management experts. It allowed us to determine both how effective we are at protecting the workers, public and the environment, and where we stand among our peers. Of course it's always rough when you go through the ringer, but it's nice coming out clean!"