Today at Berkeley Lab nameplate Berkeley Lab
Wednesday, December 8, 2004

10 a.m.
EHS 535
Hot Work Permit Training
Bldg. 51-201

11 a.m.
Nuclear Science
The Casimir Force: Background, Experiments, and Applications
Steve Lamoreaux, LANL
Bldg. 50 Auditorium

12:15 p.m.
Employee Activities Assoc.
Yoga Class with Chris Hoskins ($10/$12)
Bldg. 70A-3377

1 p.m.
EHS 135
Earthquake/Wildland Fire Safety
Bldg. 48-109

1:30 p.m.
EHS 260
Basic Electrical Hazard Awareness
Bldg. 51-201

3 p.m.
Probing and Developing Complex Oxides
Byron Freelon


9 a.m.
EHS 280
Laser Safety
Bldg. 51-201

9:30 a.m.
Football Physics
Timothy Gay, U. of Nebraska
Bldg. 6-2202

3 to 6 p.m.
Holiday Craft Fair


Morning Editions: Breakfast Bagel
Tomorrow's Breakfast: Chorizo Burrito
Market Carvery: Tamale Pie with Rice and Vegetables
The Fresh Grille: Grilled Sausage Sandwich with Peppers & Onions
Turkey Noodle Casserole

B'fast: 6:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Lunch: 11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Full menu

String Theory, at 20,
Explains It All (or Not)


They all laughed 20 years ago when physicist John Schwarz began babbling about a theory that could explain everything. And so emerged a new concept of nature, called string theory. For years physicists have looked for the origins of string theory in some sort of deep and esoteric symmetry, but string theory has turned out to be weirder than that. String theory suggests that in nature all the information about what is happening inside some volume of space is somehow encoded on its outer boundary, according to work by several theorists, including Berkeley Lab physicist Raphael Bousso. Full story.

EETD Helps Feds
Get Energy Efficient

Federal law requires that government facilities reduce their energy use by 30 percent relative to 1985 levels by the 2005 fiscal year. Researchers in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division (EETD) not only develop advanced efficient building technologies; they also work with federal facilities managers to help them meet their energy efficiency, and increasingly, their water-saving goals. Two articles in the fall 2004 issue of FEMP Focus describe EETD efforts to retrofit Camp Pendleton with more energy-efficient lights, and to reduce U.S. Postal Service costs with an energy information system. A third article by EETD authors describes how to save water with pre-rinse spray valves.


Student Jessica Blanton, left, and mentor Jill Fuss

Undergrads Discuss What They've Learned This Fall

Quality control of modules for the ATLAS Pixel Detector and methane-fueled dentrification in a bioreactor are among the topics that undergraduate students will be discussing during their end-of-semester talks, beginning at 9 a.m. on Thursday in Building 2-100.   This past fall, students were paired with mentors in the Life Sciences, Earth Sciences, Nuclear Science, and Physics Divisions. The program is sponsored by the Lab's Center for Science and Engineering Education. Go here to see a schedule of talks.


Is Your Technology

It is time to consider which technologies the Lab should nominate for R&D Magazine's 100 Top Technologies award. The awards are presented to the 100 most technologically significant new products each year. The judges evaluate both the societal impact and the scientific contribution the technology makes. To be eligible, the technology must have been promoted or licensed in 2004. Go here to learn more, or contact Pam Seidenman at x6461.


Jury Still Out On Cold Fusion, but Warrants More Research

In a new review of cold fusion — a theory that claims energy can be generated by running electrical current through water — the Department of Energy released a report yesterday that says the evidence remains inconclusive, echoing a similar report 15 years ago. Over the past several months, 18 scientists reviewed research in cold fusion, and two-thirds of them did not find the evidence for nuclear reactions in the experiments convincing. Almost all of them, however, said that aspects of cold fusion merited consideration for further research. Go here to read DOE's review, and here to read a New York Times story on the topic.

Rain, heavy at times.
Highs: upper 50s (14° C).

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