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Argonne Open House

  1. Jul 25, 2006 #1

    ZapperZ

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    This is a very early notice of something that hasn't been officially announced yet. Argonne National Lab, the oldest US national laboratory, will be having its first Open House since Sept. 11. The Open House will be held on Sat. Oct. 7th.

    This promises to be a very important and exciting event. Several dignitaries, including political representatives, government officials, and community leaders, are expected to attend the open house.

    Yours truly is the representative for the High Energy Physics division in the Open House organizing committee. I'm very excited with the planned exhibits that we will have this year for our division. This will include a tour of the accelerator facility that I'm working in. I don't mean just looking through a glass window, I mean that you will get to go into the accelerator tunnel and get to within 4 feet of an actual, working, experimental accelerator (just ask Tom if you don't believe me). We are also planning on exhibiting the TrICE telescope for looking at high energy cosmic rays, and a whole slew of other activities.

    All the divisions at Argonne will be doing similar exhibits. So if you happen to be in the neighbhorhood during that time, or can come for the weekend, why not stop by? Please make sure you bring a valid picture ID with you for security purposes. If you think you can make it, drop me a note so that I can keep an eye out for you and take you into other parts of the accelerator complex that are not open to the public.

    Zz.
     
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  3. Jul 25, 2006 #2

    Gokul43201

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    This is a very early notice that I'll be there. And I'm also interested in talking to the MSD folks, naturally.
     
  4. Jul 28, 2006 #3

    ZapperZ

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  5. Jul 28, 2006 #4
    Zap, is this the only chance to see anl in forecoming 5-year period?
     
  6. Jul 28, 2006 #5

    ZapperZ

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    Probably not. The current plan is to have this once a year.

    Zz.
     
  7. Jul 28, 2006 #6

    Gokul43201

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    Zz, do you think it would make sense to reserve a room at the Argonne Guest House rather than find a hotel nearby?
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2006
  8. Jul 28, 2006 #7

    ZapperZ

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    You can only do that if you have a gate pass to get into Argonne, and get into Argonne off hours. You will not be able to get the regular gate pass for the Open House, since I think they are putting in special security procedures just for this occassion.

    Zz.
     
  9. Jul 28, 2006 #8

    Gokul43201

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    Okay, got it.
     
  10. Jul 28, 2006 #9

    ZapperZ

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    I can suggest nearby hotels if you are thinking of finding one around Argonne. There's a Holiday Inn, LaQuinta Inn, etc. about 10 mins away.

    Zz.
     
  11. Jul 28, 2006 #10

    Gokul43201

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    I'll take a look and if I can't find what you're suggesting, I'll PM you.
     
  12. Sep 17, 2006 #11

    ZapperZ

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    This is just a reminder the first Argonne Open House in 6 years is coming up in about 3 weeks. From what I have seen, this might just be the biggest one yet, and it coincides with Argonne's 60th anniversary.

    There are exhibits all over the lab, but try to make your way to the High Energy Physics division exhibits in Bldg. 366. We have everything from a real, working particle accelerator to high energy cosmic ray telescope to neutrino/muon detectors for the MINOS/NOvA projects! I'll be there. If you can make it and haven't contacted me, please do so and I'll look out for you. You might just get an extra tour of our accelerator facility beyond what is being opened to the public on that day.

    Zz.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2006
  13. Sep 27, 2006 #12

    ZapperZ

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  14. Oct 19, 2006 #13

    ZapperZ

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    If you missed our open house 2 weeks ago, you missed a terrific time. Although I didn't get to see any of the other exhibits around the lab (since I was stuck with our exhibits), I've been told that it was a tremendous showing by all the various divisions here. The Advanced Photon Source were just innundated with visitors none stop from the get go. And the Intense Pulsed Neutron Source facility had to start their open house tour 15 minutes BEFORE the official opening because there were people already waiting in line! At the end of the day, it was estimated that more than 18,000 visitors showed up for Argonne's first Open House in 6 years!

    Our Division's effort for the Open House was a major success, even though we were in a very remote location of the lab (some people had to take 2 different shuttle busses to get to us). Still, it was the largest attendence ever that we had in this particular location. I was very satisfied with the whole event, and many of our visitors were very impressed that they got to see (i) live data coming in from the radar that can detect everything from airplanes, meteors, to high energy cosmic showers in the atmosphere (ii) a real, working, research accelerator just barely 4 feet away from them.

    Since I was working non-stop during the Open House, I didn't get to take as many pictures as I wanted, but I did get some early on before we opened, and before it became crowded.

    This is part of the MINOS display on their neutrino experiment. MINOS is the study of neutrino oscillation using neutrinos created at Fermilab. They are then detected at two locations - the near detector that is a few meters away within Fermilab grounds, and the far detector in an underground mine in Soudan, Minnesota. The neutrinos essentially travelled through the earth to get to the Soudan mine.
    [​IMG]

    We also had a large cloud chamber that people can either look directly, or watch a video projection of it on a huge screen. This was actually quite a hit, because many who showed up had never seen a cloud chamber. So it was a revelation to many when they finally realize that they are being bombared by all kinds of radiation from cosmic and terrestrial origins.
    [​IMG]

    This, of course, is my baby. The Argonne Wakefield Accelerator is an a research accelerator studying advanced acceleration mechanism. The visitors on that day got briefed on what we do, and the physics involved in achieving our goals. They are then given safety glasses and then escorted into our "bunker" that housed our accelerator beamline.
    [​IMG]

    One of the idea that I came up for our Open House is to have a table where anyone can some up and ask a high energy physicists a physics question. In fact, anyone who ask a question got a free gift for the whole group that came with him/her. I managed to persuade a couple of our high energy theorists to staff it! :) I was told that the table was a hit. I even asked a few kids if they have asked the physicsts a question and if they want something to ask (why don't you ask "What if we don't find the Higgs?"). Both of the theorists got wind as the day progressed that I was giving people questions for them to ask! :)
    [​IMG]

    Some of the attendees asking one of our staff members a number of questions.
    [​IMG]

    One of the biggest hit and the most unique thing that we had was FREE POPCORN!
    [​IMG]

    Some of the visitors getting onto the hydrogen-powered shuttle bus that took them back to the less-remote areas of Argonne.
    [​IMG]

    All in all, I was glad I volunteered to do it. I was a lot of work, and I had a few nighmares leading up to it, but in the end, it turned out very well. As a bonus, yours truly picture appeared on one of the local suburban newspaper the following Monday in the report about the Argonne Open House. The public affairs people here graciously sent me the link, and a hard copy of the newspaper. :)

    .. and thanks to Gokul for coming to the Open House. It was very nice to finally meet him!

    Zz.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2006
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