Emphasizing the Administration's commitment to strengthening the nation's investment in science, technology, and energy, Secretary of Energy Federico Peña announced on Monday that the Department of Energy is asking Congress for a nine percent increase in its fiscal year 1999 budget for a total of $18 billion--that's up $1.5 billion from last year's approved budget.
The bulk of the proposed budget is targeted toward four areas: environmental quality ($6.7 billion), national security ($6.1 billion), science and technology ($2.7 billion), and energy resources ($2.3 billion), the latter of which will see the largest increase (30 percent).
The proposed budget, Peña said during a press conference in Washing-ton, D.C., "strengthens investments in science, technology and energy to help America remain the world's economic and scientific leader for the next century."
The $2.7 billion budget request for the Office of Energy Research would represent an 11 percent increase from last year's figure, if approved by Congress. ER programs include research conducted at DOE national laboratories in the areas of basic energy science, high energy and nuclear physics, biological and environmental science, computing, and fusion. Of these, basic energy sciences gets the largest increase--25 percent--for a total of $836.1 million, up from $667.3 million for FY98.
DOE's science and technology budget includes large funding allotments for two major programs in which Berkeley Lab plays a major role. Its centerpiece is $157 million for the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS), to be built at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. Berkeley Lab's Accelerator and Fusion Research (AFRD) Division is building the front end of the facility, which will be the most powerful pulsed neutron source in the world. Also included in the budget is $65 million for FY99 for U.S. participation in the Large Hadron Collider, an international collaboration at CERN in which the Lab's Physics and AFRD Divisions are involved.
Other science R&D programs highlighted by Peña include the Human Genome program, the Climate Change Technology Initiative, the Next Generation Internet Initiative and the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider.
Despite the overall positive numbers for the DOE budget, Reid Edwards, Berkeley Lab's government relations manager, cautioned against being overly optimistic about the Laboratory's FY99 budget.
"We'll realize the benefits of support for the SNS," Edwards said, with reference to Berkeley Lab's $43 million portion of the project. "And energy efficiency programs may be increased over the current year's budget. There are a number of other targeted opportunities for additional laboratory contributions. But overall, the numbers for most programs that support the Laboratory's research are even with inflation at best. We won't know for sure exactly what funding will be heading our way until Congress deals with the Administration's budget request. But our expectation is that our overall budget will be roughly similar to what we're receiving this year."
Edwards also noted that, considering the scenarios of two or three years ago, which projected budget cuts of 20 to 30 percent in scientific research programs, the FY99 proposal is welcome relief and an encouraging sign for future federal support of science.
In his speech on Monday Peña highlighted some of the more noteworthy accomplishments of DOE research over the past fiscal year. Among them: the new energy-efficient fluorescent lamp developed by scientists at Berkeley Lab's Environmental Energy Technologies (EET) Division.
The $4.5 billion national security budget announced on Monday focuses on ensuring the safety of the country's nuclear weapons stockpile and replacing nuclear testing with a science-based stockpile stewardship program. Projects include continued construction of the National Ignition Facility ($291 million) and completing installation of a three-teraflop supercomputer at Livermore.
The energy resources budget is aimed at developing energy efficient technologies and renewable energy sources and meeting greenhouse gas reduction goals. These efforts were boosted by the results of a five-lab study on carbon reduction strategies led by Mark Levine, director of Berkeley Lab's EET Division, and presented at the recent Kyoto conference on global climate change.
Finally, DOE's environmental quality program focuses on cleaning up "the legacy of the Cold War." The $6.7 billion budget is targeted toward accelerating the cleanup at some 80 sites around the country.
"The budget will maintain a strong national security, spur development of clean and efficient energy sources, and pioneer science and technology that will improve nearly every facet of American life," Peña said.
Photo:DOE's FY 1999 budget proposal for programs of the Office of Energy Research. (bar.chart.jpeg)
The appointment reflects an effort to balance differing approaches to science teaching. Last November Seaborg, a back-to-basics advocate, along with a group of other scientists, offered to write the state's science standards--for free. Their offer was rejected by the Commission in favor of a bid from another group that emphasizes teaching methods over nuts-and-bolts fundamentals. Last month the Commission revisited its decision, and encouraged the two groups to work together.
The commission is charged with developing standards for what the state's students need to accomplish in math, science, history, reading and writing. The standards developed by the commission are not mandatory, but are expected to influence what is taught in schools, and will become the basis for textbooks and statewide exams.
An ardent advocate of science education for many years, Seaborg has stressed the importance of scientific literacy and its importance to national competitiveness in the global economy. In 1983 he was a co-author of the report "A Nation at Risk," which warned of "a rising tide of mediocrity" in U.S. schools and which ultimately led to educational reforms nationwide.
Seaborg was also a driving force behind CHEMStudy, a post-sputnik era curriculum for chemistry education that was used in schools for many years. He continues to serve nationwide on many committees charged with developing and maintaining science education standards. He also makes frequent appearances in classrooms, college lecture halls, and science fairs, sharing anecdotes from his long and varied scientific career.
Seaborg promotes scientific literacy not only for future scientists, but for the general public, who must to be able to make informed decisions about public policy and the issues that affect their daily lives.
"The success of our scientific research and development efforts depends in no small part on the support of the public and its confidence in the value of the work," Seaborg says. Such support requires an understanding of basic scientific principles.
As one of his first functions as chair of the Science Subcommittee, Seaborg will address the commission on Tuesday, Feb. 10, on the topic of "Education for the 21st Century."
Photo: Glenn Seaborg (XBD9607-03289.jpeg)
The elusive goal of harnessing the vast potential of one of the earth's most plentiful materials is another step closer to realization. Using ultrafast spectroscopic techniques that provide "stop-action" images within a trillionth of a second, scientists at Berkeley Lab have obtained the first detailed picture of an alkane-activation reaction at room temperature.
Alkanes are compounds of carbon and hydrogen atoms held together by single bonds. The simplest and most abundant of these is methane, the primary constituent of natural gas. Chemists have long coveted the use of alkanes as environmentally benign feedstock for clean-burning fuels and a host of petrochemicals, including plastics, solvents, synthetic fibers, and pharmaceutical drugs. The problem has been that the bonds between an alkane's carbon and hydrogen atoms are strong enough to render alkanes generally unreactive.
In the early 1980s, Robert Bergman, a chemist in Berkeley Lab's Chemical Sciences Division (CSD) and at UC Berkeley, led the discovery of a group of organometallic complexes--compounds of metal atoms, such as iridium or rhodium, sandwiched between organic molecules with a unique property. Upon irradiation with ultraviolet light, these organometallics were shown to generate a reaction that is able to break the carbon-hydrogen bonds in alkanes and insert metal atoms into the mix, creating new, much more reactive carbon-metal-hydrogen compounds.
Since discovering this alkane-activating reaction, Bergman has been working to better understand it with the ultimate aim of designing a catalytic process that could be used in commercial operations. An obstacle has been that the reaction takes place within 230 nanoseconds (billionths of a second). To slow it down for detailed study, Bergman and Bradley Moore, another chemist who holds a joint Berkeley Lab-UC Berkeley appointment, conducted experiments in liquefied noble gas solvents under extremely low temperatures.
Since these conditions are far removed from those that might be used in a commercial process, Bergman sought a means of studying the alkane-activating reaction under more realistic conditions.
A new collaboration was established with Charles Harris and Heinz Frei of the Physical Biosciences Division. Harris provided a special time-resolved infra-red flash kinetics spectrometer that operates on a femtosecond (millionths of a billionth) time-scale. This enabled the researchers to irradiate alkanes and the organometallic complexes with ultraviolet light and measure the kinetics at room temperature with the compounds dissolved in a hydrocarbon solvent. Frei supplied a Fourier transform infrared spectrometer (FTIR) that allowed the researchers to monitor the carbon-hydrogen activation reaction in the nanosecond regime. These powerful tools made it possible for the scientists to directly establish the time-scale for alkane bond-activation in a room-temperature solution.
"We now have a detailed picture of the activation reaction," Bergman says. "Structures of all the intermediates involved have been identified and assigned, and energy barriers for each reaction step, from solvation to formation of the final alkyl hydride product, have been estimated."
Says Harris, an expert in femtosecond studies, "The femtosecond technique used in this alkane reaction study in combination with step-scan infra-red spectroscopy should be applicable to many other problems associated with the reactions of complex molecules."
While the results of this study do not represent a quantum leap toward the goal of converting alkanes into chemically useful products, a good "mechanistic understanding" of the alkane activation reaction brings science closer to that goal.
Collaborating with Bergman, Harris, and Frei on this project were Matthew Asplund, Steven Bromberg, Tianquan Lian, Kenneth Kotz, Bruce McNamara, Haw Yang, Jake Yeston, and M. Wilkens.
Photo:Enigmatic alkane-activation reactions that take place over billionths of a second have been recorded, as depicted here on the cover of Science magazine. (XBD9801-00009.jpeg)
News from Washington
Scheduled to be completed in 2005, the SNS will be the world's most powerful accelerator-driven source of neutrons. Its pulsed beams will be used to probe the structure of liquids and solids, providing detailed information that other particles cannot.
Applications run from chemistry to biology to solid state physics and materials sciences. The SNS project is a collaboration between five national laboratories including Berkeley Lab, which is responsible for building the "front end" of the facility--its ion-source, radiofrequency quadrupole, and beam transport system. Jose Alonso of the Lab's Accelerator and Fusion Research Division is coordinating all the accelerator and target elements for the project.
The project involves Berkeley Lab plus Lawrence Livermore and Sandia national laboratories, which are electronically linked so that researchers in one facility can tap into work at another. Energy Secretary Federico Peña called the three facilities' participation in the CRADA a "virtual lab," and said he hoped more such ventures will be established at DOE. Krebs now says that DOE officials hope to eventually develop a networking system that would allow researchers around the nation remote access to the department's accelerators.
The first part of NGI calls for developing a network consisting of 100 sites around the nation capable of operating at speeds 100 times faster than the current Internet. The second part of the program, in which DOE expects to participate, calls for 10 other sites that would operate 1,000 times faster than current technology by the year 2000. Nelson said DOE should be able to use its expertise in managing production and research networks, skills integration and specific applications to make a major contribution in this area. DOE did not receive any funding in its FY98 budget to participate in NGI, but Nelson said he is optimistic that DOE will be part of the initiative in FY99.
Both logos were designed by Niza Hanany of the Public Information Department. The blue and yellow NERSC logo has been in use since last fall.
The head of the sponsoring organization commented that the selection standards for the 1997 competition were especially high given the large increase in the number of entries and the quality of work submitted.
The fourteenth annual edition of Annual Corporate Identity, with the two Lab logos, is scheduled for publication in October 1998.
Last Friday Levine was also a featured guest on "Science Friday," a National Public Radio program. He was interviewed by Ira Flatow during an hour-long discussion on the topic of global warming and carbon emission reductions.
The interview is available in real audio format on the program's website at http://www.sciencefriday.com
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Low maintenance and high reliability helped the 88-Inch Cyclotron produce an on-target beam for 6,243 research hours last fiscal year--up a thousand hours from previous years. A vital component of this success was the upgraded Advanced Electron-Cyclotron Resonance ion source (AECR-U), which has set records for producing highly-charged massive ions, including the uniquely heavy high-charge-state ion, plus-60 uranium.
An even more powerful and flexible Third Generation ion source is nearing completion; in preliminary tests its superconducting sextupole magnets have already produced the strongest radial fields of any such source.
Peggy McMahan, research coordinator at the 88-Inch Cyclotron--a national user facility--says that the ability to go to higher masses is essential to studies of nuclear structure. "Certain experiments require heavy projectiles, and to accelerate them, you need higher charge. With the AECR-U we can produce energetic dysprosium, atomic mass 162.5, heavy enough for nuclear reactions." And when the Berkeley Gas-filled Spectrometer experiment comes on-line in the spring, there will be a need for high intensity beams of middle-mass particles, as well heavy elements and elements far from stability. "We expect lots of proposals from scientists all over the world," says McMahan.
Cyclotron ion sources were not always powerful or versatile. In the prehistoric era (the early 1930s) Ernest Lawrence twisted a stopcock on a flask and let hydrogen gas flow through a narrow tube to a hot filament at the center of his cyclotron. Leaks were his worst problem--the Radiation Laboratory reeked of red wax, which was kept constantly bubbling on the stove for painting cracks in the cyclotron seals.
In the middle ages (the early 1980s) the way to get ions into a cyclotron was to use a Penning ion gauge, or PIG--a device about as elegant as its acronym. A PIG was a long pole that had to be manually shoved up into a cyclotron's middle; it functioned erratically and produced few high-charge-state ions.
"The operation of these old sources had a lot of 'people-component,'" says Claude Lyneis, the 88-Inch Cyclotron's director. "One crew would set up the PIG, and by the time they got it working it would be time for another crew to come on. And some operators just had a better feel for tweaking the knobs."
Modern times began in France with the invention of the electron-cyclotron resonance ion source. "ECRs are basically magnetic bottles," Lyneis explains. "They evolved from research into fusion devices, where the goal was to confine a pure plasma of hydrogen ions and electrons. The fusion researchers didn't want to see these high-charge-state heavy ions because they sucked the energy out of the plasma; but Richard Geller, the father of this technology, said, 'let's use this, let's get those ions out.'"
The first ECR in the United States started operating at Berkeley Lab's 88-Inch Cyclotron in Jan. 1985 and almost immediately revitalized nuclear research at the Lab. Compared to PIGs, the ECR doubled the maximum energy of many less massive ions and accelerated elements as heavy as krypton to 5 MeV per nucleon. At the same time it was precise enough not to waste minute amounts of expensive rare isotopes such as argon 36. And because the ECR is external to the cyclotron itself, it's simpler to adjust from the control room--"much like a video game," as Lyneis puts it.
A typical ECR is roughly the size and shape of an oil drum lying on its side. Two or three donut-shaped solenoid magnets surround a cylindrical chamber with six long magnets fitted like barrel staves around it. These sextupole magnets repel charged particles from the inner walls of the chamber; the solenoid magnets provide "mirrors" of high field strength at the ends of the chamber. Because the field strength is lower between the mirrors, charged particles tend to stay in the middle of the barrel. "Any way the plasma looks, it sees an increasing magnetic field," says Lyneis.
An ECR produces ions by first accelerating electrons. Being 1800 times less massive than protons, electrons are readily trapped by the plasma chamber's magnetic fields. Their spiral "cyclotron" motion in the fields, plus the heating mechanism, gives the electron-cyclotron resonance source its name.
In the AECR-U, the electrons are accelerated by two microwave frequencies. They bounce between the magnetic mirrors, some in short patterns in the center of the field, where they pick up energy (heat) by resonating with the lower microwave frequency, while more energetic electrons move in longer spirals, resonant with both frequencies.
Meanwhile, massive positive ions careen back and forth inside the plasma chamber, passing through the dense cloud of cycling electrons. Collisions strip more electrons away from the ions and increase their charge states. Eventually they diffuse through a relatively weak "hole" in the mirror field at the downstream end of the chamber, where they are attracted by lower-voltage extraction electrodes.
The plasma--electrons and positive ions together--must remain in equilibrium, which requires a constant source of cold electrons. One source is the wall of the chamber itself; one of the AECR-U's major upgrades was a new chamber machined from solid aluminum instead of copper. When the plasma reacts with the aluminum, electrons are freed from the chamber walls, reducing the need for an additional source.
The upgraded AECR-U is the workhorse at the 88-Inch; with powerful sextupole magnets delivering a field strength at the chamber wall of 0.85 Tesla--some 47,000 times the strength of the Earth's magnetic field--not only has it produced record currents of less massive ions, it has also produced multiply charged massive ions, such as plus-38 xenon, plus-47 gold, plus-50 bismuth, and low currents of plus-60 uranium.
"It's of interest to the ECR community that you can produce any of these ions," says Lyneis, and while he refuses to boast, in the case of plus-60 uranium no one else has done it. Lyneis credits Z.Q. "Dan" Xie with the AECR-U's success. "Dan has set the records. Now we're off to build the Third Generation."
The Third Generation ECR has a plasma chamber with ten times the volume of the AECR-U, and will use three frequencies of microwaves to heat the plasma instead of two. Its superconducting magnets are wound with 28 miles of copper-jacketed niobium-tin wire left over when the Superconduct-ing Super Collider was canceled.
The sextupole magnets are of a novel design, using 1600 turns of superconducting wire around iron cores; all six performed better than their design goals. Tested separately, two of the three solenoid magnets which shape the mirror field also exceeded their goals (the central magnet achieved half again its designed strength) but one of the solenoids achieved only 70 percent. Even so, in a combined test the magnetic field at the wall of the chamber was more than two and a half times as strong as the radial field of the AECR-U.
"We have good news and bad news," Lyneis says. "We have the strongest sextupoles ever built for an ECR, but they're showing some movement; they may not be clamped enough to reach their full field strength." The fields of the Third Generation's superconducting magnets are so strong that, when assembled, the sextupoles literally try to blow themselves apart. "Right now the technical challenge is to build a magnet structure that will run at the designed fields."
Dan Xie, along with Clyde Taylor and Ron Scanlan of the Accelerator and Fusion Research Division, who built the superconducting magnets, are at work on a new clamping scheme. With its superconducting sextupoles firmly clamped, the Third Generation ECR will soon become the world's strongest ion source for cyclotrons, likely to expand the universe of nuclear science beyond anything that could have been imagined in the "middle ages" just fifteen years ago.
Photo: Claude Lyneis, director of the 88-Inch Cyclotron, with the record-setting AECR-U ion source. (XBD9802-00158.jpeg)Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt
Said NSF director Neal Lane, "Two years ago, we were worried about projected major cuts in R&D. Today, we celebrate recognition of the critical role of science and technology in society's future. This turnabout owes much to the research community's effort to build public awareness."
President Clinton's budget proposals contained a significant increase for virtually every federal R&D agency with the exception of NASA. The Administration expects overall civilian R&D funding to continue to grow through FY 2003.
Todd Hansen calls them "eclipse chasers," and he and his wife, Lonny Baker, serve as their Pied Pipers.
The chasers are amateur astronomy buffs who will go anywhere in the world to witness the rare solar/lunar dance resulting in a total eclipse of the sun. Hansen, an analyst in the Planning and Communications Office at Berkeley Lab, and his wife organize the tours that get the chasers to their destination, providing expert commentary along the way.
"Eclipses are among the most spectacular natural phenomena we can ever see," said Hansen, himself an amateur astronomer who built his own telescope when he was a teenager. "And they're all different," he added, pointing to the variation in the size of fiery solar eruptions (called prominences) and the drama of the corona, a majestic ring of light that encircles the blackened sphere when "totality" is reached.
The next eclipse happens on Thursday, Feb. 26, and ground zero--that geographic point which optimizes seeing the total eclipse--is in the Caribbean Sea, about 35 miles off the coast of Aruba. Hansen and 600 other sun-gazers, including 80 in the Baker-Hansen entourage, will be on the deck of the appropriately named ship "Stella Solaris" to record the moment on film or through binoculars.
Hansen says the time lapse from "first contact," when the moon first begins to block out the sun, until total eclipse is about 90 minutes. That's when the fun begins. For the next three minutes and 43 seconds, an eerie darkness descends, tongues of flame burst from the sun's glowing rim, and the corona--where temperatures can reach four million degrees--becomes visible to the unaided eye. It is a precious moment of majesty and awe for all who witness it.
More than half of the chasers this year have been on one of the previous Baker-Hansen tours. The others, like Berkeley Lab nuclear scientist Janis Dairiki and her husband Ned, are tour first-timers, although it will be their second eclipse.
"It's really spectacular," Dairiki said, reflecting her experience at the Punta Colorado fishing resort in Baja, Calif., in 1991. "The whole sense of it, the darkness in the daytime. Watching the sun is one piece of it. But the peripheral effects can be just as fascinating. At the fishing village (when darkness descended), birds came in and settled down for the night."
The event turned her into an "eclipse junkie," she said. "Once you've seen it, you're hooked." She said two of her nuclear science colleagues, Peggy McMahan and Gordon Wozniak, have scheduled their vacations around this month's eclipse.
Hansen has been fascinated by eclipses since he saw his first total eclipse in 1972 in Nova Scotia, when he was 22 years old. Again in 1979, on the Hanford reservation in Washington state, he experienced the thrill of an eclipse, and his fate was set.
Lonny Baker, then education coordinator at Morrison Planetarium for the California Academy of Sciences, developed her first solar eclipse excursion in 1991, and 100 hardy souls signed up for the event. She and Hansen led the group to Oaxaca, Mexico, where the eclipse was brilliant, and the side trips to places like the ruins at Monte Alban were fascinating.
Since total eclipses only repeat roughly every 18 months or so, and then not always in an accessible location, the next viable trip came in 1994. This time, 60 explorers witnessed the splendor over one of the world's spectacular scenic wonders: Iguazu Falls in Brazil. When they were not sun-chasing, they were traversing the lake country in the Andes.
A prospective trip to India in 1995 was canceled due to minimal interest, and the 1997 opportunity in Siberia was, well, unattractive. However, this year's ports-of-call--Curacao, Aruba, Jamaica, Grand Cayman--were an easy sell. And August 1999 has total eclipse ground zero in the Black Sea, with Istanbul and Yalta close at hand. The Baker-Hansen team is already making preliminary plans for that one.
Hansen admits that the peripheral attractions are sometimes as alluring as the astronomy, although he says they cannot compete with "the drama of those last 30 seconds before totality. People shriek and yell. And you never know exactly what you'll see." He and Baker prepare their followers for the moment by giving talks on the stars, eye safety, and use of equipment.
Star-gazers hoping to experience the total solar eclipse closer to home have a long wait. The next one scheduled for the continental United States is in 2017. In the meantime, they will have to put up with the challenges of global excursions to exotic destinations. Chances are good that Hansen and Baker will lead the way.
Photo:This collage of photos of the 1994 solar eclipse, taken in Iguazu Falls, Brazil, depicts (left to right) the solar chromosphere, the corona, and the "diamond ring." (ZBD9801-00121.jpeg) Photo by Andy Streitwieser
Latimer started his career at the Lab in 1958 as a nuclear chemist. By 1964 he became group leader of Nuclear Chemistry, where he was in charge of the heavy element production facility and worked with Albert Ghiorso on the research team that discovered element 103 (lawrencium). In the late 1960s Latimer moved from research to the administration of safety operations, and eventually headed EH&S for more than a decade.
"He was a natural leader," said Jim Haley, a former deputy director of EH&S who has known Latimer since the 1960s, when they worked together at the HILAC. "He was very organized, very purposeful, and very fair to everyone. He had an open door policy and talked with everyone. We were like a big family at the time."
After a long career at Berkeley Lab, Latimer joined the Hazards Control department at Livermore.
In his spare time, Latimer enjoyed carpentry, mechanics, and refurbishing old cars. He also loved to ski and owned a cabin at Alpine Meadows.
Latimer is survived by his wife Ann, son Craig Wendell Latimer, and daughter Rachelle Latimer. Memorial contributions may be sent to VNA & Hospice Foundation in Emeryville.
Photo:Robert M. Latimer (XBD9801-00048.jpeg)
David Littlejohn, who studies atmospheric chemistry in the Environmental Energy Technologies division, spent a month last fall flying back and forth across the North Atlantic in a NASA jet. Littlejohn's graduate-school classmate in the UC Berkeley chemistry department was Jim Podolske, now of NASA and principal investigator on the OPTIMA experiment of NASA's SONEX Mission. Podolske asked Littlejohn to join the team to write data-acquisition and analysis software for the OPTIMA team.
SONEX stands for Subsonic Assessment, Ozone and Nitrogen Oxide Experiment (NASA loves acronyms, even this side of outer space) and constitutes the first full-scale attempt to make direct measurements of pollutants emitted by aircraft in flight along the world's busiest air corridor. OPTIMA, which stands for Open Path Tunable Infrared Monitor of the Atmosphere, was one of 16 experiments whose equipment and personnel were crammed into the cabin of the DC-8 airborne laboratory.
While the SST supersonic jet has been the focus of concern about emissions in the stratosphere, subsonic jets at lower altitudes make many more trips across the Atlantic--some 400 to 700 times a day, depending on the season. Along with soot, water vapor, and sulfur oxides being studied by other NASA missions, oxides of nitrogen are a major cause of concern. Ozone is another concern addressed by SONEX: in addition to greenhouse effects caused by too little ozone in the upper atmosphere, too much in the lower atmosphere could promote global warming.
"Until recently most emissions tests were done by measuring what came out of airplane engines on the ground, then extrapolating," Littlejohn says. "We wanted to find out what was actually being emitted aloft. In some cases we were flying in the path of planes that had just passed by."
The OPTIMA experiment was designed to monitor gas-phase nitric acid and nitrogen dioxide in undisturbed air, rather than collecting these compounds through narrow tubes or other probes. "Chemical changes can result just from the air going four or five hundred miles an hour, hitting the collecting tube, and heating up," Littlejohn explains, so OPTIMA detection takes place in the "free stream region" over the wing.
A laser beam is directed out a window and bounced back and forth between a mirror on top of the left inboard engine pylon and another mirror on the fuselage. Ideally the beam makes 64 trips before absorption measurements are made. (Nitric acid and nitrogen dioxide have easily-identifiable absorption features.)
Because the pylon-mounted mirror moves constantly in relation to the fuselage, the system is actively adjusted by means of guide lasers, position sensors, and servo-actuators controlled by computer. These serve to make sure the beam length stays constant. The set-up is monitored by a computer in the cabin, while another computer stores the fast-accumulating data.
"Typically we'd be in the air one day, spend a day going over the data we'd collected, and then spend another day prepping the next flight," Littlejohn says. The main bases for the mission were Bangor, Maine, on this side of the Atlantic, Shannon, Ireland on the other, and the Azores in midocean, with side trips that took the researchers south to the Canary Islands and north to Norway.
Although the work was interesting, there was little time off, says Littlejohn--except when the aircraft was on the ground six days after sucking a seagull into one of its four engines. "The pilot didn't abort the flight, but when we were back on the ground he thought it would be good to make sure there was no damage."
Except for some erosion of the mirror surfaces, OPTIMA performed well. "We weren't sure it would work at all," says Littlejohn. "Not only did it work, we got lots of good data."
Since the flights ended, the teams have been crunching numbers. The results of most of the SONEX experiments will be announced in March and will be available on the SONEX website (http://telsci.arc.nasa.gov/~sonex/).
Jim Podolske and Dave Littlejohn, as co-investigators, have proposed a second series of tests for the NASA airborne mission planned for 1999 in the Central and South Pacific. Instead of Bangor, Maine, the plane will stop at places like Tahiti, Hawaii, and Costa Rica. Not bad places to be stuck on the ground, should an unfortunate encounter with a seagull occur.
Photos:NASA's DC-8 SONEX flying laboratory holds researchers and equipment for 16 different atmospheric experiments. At left, OPTIMA's pylon-mounted mirror reflects a laser beam back and forth through the airstream to detect nitrogen oxides. (XBD9802-00138.jpeg & XBD9802-00139.jpeg)
Photo:Principal investigator Jim Podolske of NASA lounges in the spacious cabin area reserved for the OPTIMA experiment. (XBD9802-00137.jpeg)
If so, please send your suggestions to [email protected] lbl.gov. We cannot publish every item submitted, but we will consider all your suggestions. We look forward to hearing from you!
To set up your computer to access the Web, call the Mac and PC Support Group at X6858.
The hearings, held at various locations around the country, will offer an overview of the CNES and give participants an opportunity to comment. A registry for participants wishing to speak will open half an hour prior to the hearing.
The UC Davis hearing will be held in Club Room I from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
A copy of the draft CNES is available online at http://www.eren.doe.gov/nes.html. Written comments are encouraged and must be submitted by Feb. 27. You may fax your comments to (202) 737-0219, e-mail them to [email protected]om, or mail them to U.S. Department of Energy, Attn: CNES-Hearings, 1000 Independence Ave. S.W., Room 7B-044, Washington, DC 20585.
In recognition of Black History Month, LHS will offer an array of special programs on all Saturdays and Sundays in February. These include "African Skies" planetarium shows, a "living museum" honoring notable black scientists, a theater presentation, activities recognizing scientist Lewis Lattimer, and a demonstration of rhythmic art developed in West Africa.
For more information on these and other activities, call the LHS at 642-5132.
The next tournament will be held at the Delta View Golf Course in Pittsburg on Feb. 21. For questions concerning upcoming tournaments or club membership contact Denny Parra at X4598.
The Berkeley Lab Calendar is published biweekly here on the World Wide Web and in Currents by the Public Information Department. Employees can list a meeting, class, or event in the Calendar by using this submission form. The deadline for submissions is 5 p.m. on Monday in the week that Currents is published.
In addition to the events listed below, Berkeley Lab's Washington, D.C. Projects office is hosting a Science and Technology Seminars series.Scientific Conferences
WED., FEB. 11 MUSIC CLUB
General meeting, noon, lower cafeteria
AFRICAN AMERICAN EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION
General Meeting, noon, Bldg. 90-1099
7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Bldg. 54, parking lot
UCB PHYSICS DEPARTMENT COLLOQUIUM
"The Laser Cooling and Trapping of Atoms and Biomolecules" will be presented by Steven Chu, 1997 Nobel Laureate in Physics of Stanford University.
4:30 p.m., 1 LeConte. Tea at 4 p.m., 375 LeConte
NERSC TRAINING SEMINAR
"Cray T3E Supercomputer Training for New Users" will be presented by the NERSC User Services Group. 1-5 p.m., Perseverance Hall, Bldg. 54 (cafeteria)
NERSC DIVISION SEMINAR
"An Overview of NERSC's User Services and Computer Operations Network Support Groups" will be presented by Francesca Verdier and William Harris. 2-3:30 p.m., Persever-ance Hall, Bldg. 54 (cafeteria)
CENTER FOR ENVIRONMENTAL BIOTECHNOLOGY SEMINARS
"Patterns of Microbial Diversity in Arid Ecosystem" will be presented by John Zak of Texas Technology University.
Noon, 338 Koshland Hall
BIOSCIENCES LECTURE SERIES
"The Kenetochore and the Golgi: What EM Tomography Can Tell Us About Cell Biological Mechanisms" will be presented by J. Richard Mcintosh of the American Cancer Society. 4 p.m., Bldg. 66 auditorium. Wine and cheese buffet will follow presentation
Items for the calendars may be sent via e-mail to [email protected] lbl.gov, faxed to X6641 or mailed to Bldg. 65B. The deadline for the Feb. 20 issue is 5 p.m. Monday, Feb. 16.
`81 HONDA Civic hatchback, 5 spd, 100K mi, original owner, new timing belt, regularly serviced at local Honda dealer, good commute car, fun to drive, $900, Chuck, X4461, 521-6368
`83 HONDA Accord, single owner, 4 dr, a/t, a/c, 4 spkr stereo, garaged day/night, all records, super cond, 138K mi, $3500, David, X7803, 233-6007
`86 CHEVROLET Spectrum, 2 dr, 5 spd, radio + cassette, red, new clutch & brakes, runs great, 145K mi, $900/b.o., Paola, 524-9370, 655-2016
`90 GEO Storm, 5 spd, 2 dr, spoiler, a/c, p/s, p/w, 110K mi, gd cond, $2500, Zhou, X7633, 895-6867
`91 ACURA Legend L, 4 dr sedan, 5 spd, loaded, 57K mi, all records, exc inside & out, $13,900, Bill, X7271, 376-3419
`92 CHEVROLET Silverado, 1/2 ton, 4x4 sportside pickup, fully loaded, a/t, a/c, p/s, p/b abs, p/w, p/dl, tinted windows, duraliner, alum alloy wheels, full size spare, 5.7L eng, metallic blue, rear sliding windows, $13,000/b.o., Ken, 462-2010 eve, aft 6 pm
`92 MAZDA MPV minivan, exc cond, loaded, $11,000, Dick, X6466
`95 TOYOTA Pickup, extra cab, 5 spd, 4 cyl, a/c, 58K mi, $10,500/b.o., Margo, X6280, (415) 871-4450
`95 KIA Sephia, exc cond, 5 spd manual, a/c, am/fm stereo, cassette, 31K mi, warranty till 9/98, $7700, Ron, X5453, 204-9332
CJ7 parts: roll bar, $75; hard doors, $500; gas tank, $50; soft top, $150/b.o., Gisela, X5862, 841-2066
CAMPER top, pickup, like new, snug-top model, dark blue, Dave, X4171, 930-7130
CAR SEAT, for infant to toddler, only three yrs old, sturdy, very good cond, $30, Jacki, X4762
CD/RECORDER, detachable speakers, digital radio, auto reverse, w/equalizer, programmable CD, rarely used, $90, 845-5154
CRIB Pali, exc cond, natural maple finish, converts to youth bed, w/three stacked drawers at one end, + two under crib, complete w/mattress & matching set of bed linens, incl bumpers, $300, Miguel, X6443, 526-5291
DRAWING BOARD, white artist's, portable, 31"x42" w/attached movable straight edge handle, good cond, hardly used, $50, Kurt, X4061, 528-7747
GOLF CLUBS, left handed, #1,3,4,5 woods; #2-9 irons; 1-pitching iron, 1-wedge, 2 putters, + bag, clubs are Wilson Blue Ridge, Power Bilt and Sam Snead, $225/b.o., Jan, X6653
LOVE BIRDS, 2 mo old, one bird is lt blue, the other is dark blue, cannot be sold separately, $75, Alicia, 758-0705
MATTRESS, full, exc cond, $40; twin, exc cond, $20; pine futon wood frame, new, full size, $40/b.o., Grazyna, X7128, 524-8373
REFRIGERATOR, dorm, 33"h18"d18"w, Nancy, X5102
SAXOPHONE, `96 Yanagisawa T990 Tenor, exc cond, $2500, Guy, X5901
SEARAY Cruiser, `82, 221/2 ft, SRV225, 260 Merc outdrive, sleeps 4, head, galley, lots of teak, 310 hrs, delta canvas, vhf, depth sounder, trim tabs, very good cond, incl trailrite tandem axle trailer, b.o., 376-2211
TAPE RECORDER/CD, Panasonic, detachable spkrs, digital, radio, auto reverse, rarely used, $90, 845-5154
TOWEL rack, brass tubing, 7 ft high, made to fit over toilet in bth, like new, spacious, $30/b.o., Marlene, X6005
TREE, coat/hat, walnut bentwood, $15; Stainless steel restaurant-style teapots (2), $6 ea, Sherry, X6972, 799-8414
TV, Sony color, 27", decent picture, $60/b.o., Ali, 644-2940
WEDDING GOWN, ivory satin & lace, full skirt, no train, size 10, $200; Mahogany highboy, 5 drawers, made by Bassett, $150/b.o., Allen or Alisa, 644-2706
BERKELEY, 3 bdrms, 2 bth, house, avail 5/1/98, $2500/mo, David, X4337, 548-8180
BERKELEY, northside, furn rm in 4 bdrm house, 5 blks from UCB, nr LBNL shuttle stop, 2 other visiting scholars live here, $550/mo + util, 548-1287
EL CERRITO, furn studio in house avail for grads, scholars, visitors, private entry, off st parking, no smoking, no pets, 15.8x15, close to bus, BART, shopping center, new carpet, new refrig, microwave, full kitchen equip, $485/mo, Ming, 524-3780
EL SOBRANTE, Appian Way, 4 bdrm, 2.5 bth house unfurn, w/fireplace, fam rm & 2 car garage, nr shopping & transportation, avail mid-to late Feb, $1200/mo, Renee, 532-1935
KENSINGTON, 3 bdrm, 1.5 bth, one level home, avail 3/16-4/22, dates & rent negotiable, Golden Gate view, Dick, 524-1641
KENSINGTON, 5 bdrm house to share w/1 person, private bth, great privacy, view of bay & Golden Gate Bridge, lg bdrm, garden w/trees, nr shopping/ buses, $500/mo + 1/3 utils, 524-7086
NORTH BERKELEY, share furn, 2 bdrm apt, nr BART, produce market, cafe, shops, 1 person only, must enjoy music & fitness, share bth & kitchen, $500/mo, util incl, Harold, 528-8135
OAKDALE, 4 bdrm house, 3 bth, 3 car attached garage, 2500 sq ft, 3 yrs old, pool/hot tub, fireplace, a/c, quiet neighborhood, no pets, $1350/mo, avail now, Shelley, X6123, 820-3172
OAKLAND, 1 bdrm apt, Lake Merritt area, $575/mo, avail 3/1, Jin, X7531
ROCKRIDGE, 2 rms avail 3/1 in lg comfortable house sharing w/one male, one female; walk to BART, bus; 1st rm lg w/private bath, $475/mo + shared utils; 2nd rm med size w/shared bath, $360/mo + shared utils, prefer clean, quiet, friendly, non-smoking, long term people, Rebecca, X6168, 658-7664
WALNUT CREEK, townhouse, 2 bdrm, 2.5 bth, 2 car attached garage, fireplace, aec, central air, nr Lafayette on Cannon Dr, avail mid Feb, $1200/mo, 376-2211
HAWAII, unfurn, 2 bdrm, 2 bth house, 20 mi below Hilo on rainy side of Big Island, convenient to Univ of Hawaii campus & orchid plantations, $450/mo; possible lease-option to buy for $58,000, nr schools, shopping, 1 mi to ocean bluff, Marlene, X6005
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE Keys, 3 bdrm house, 2.5 bth, on water, fenced yard, quiet area, close to skiing & other attractions, great views of water & mountains, $125/night, 2 night min, 376-2211
APT, studio, clean, safe, starting mid March to early April, $500, Rebecca, X4329
APT, 1 bdrm, furn, for visitor to LBNL, 4/1-6/30, quiet area w/i 2-3 blks from LBNL shuttle/BART, Ray (517) 333-6427, [email protected]
APT, or house, Berkeley, 1-2 bdrm, furn, 4/1 for 1-5 mos for visiting German scientist & wife; non smokers, Reinhard Doerner, e-mail: [email protected] or Mike, X7838, 654-0928
APT, furn, 1-2 bdrm, for Dutch scholar couple, non smoker, access to UCB from March 1, 524-4654
CARPOOL, rider/driver from Dublin (San Ramon & Pleasanton area) to LBNL, Mon-Fri, work hrs 7 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Calvin, X5562, 828-0306
EASEL, French Julian sketch box, good cond w/foldable legs or similar in other brand name, Tennessee, X5013
HOUSING, for visiting scientist, through April, 559-7838 after 2/8, email [email protected]
ROCKING chair, all wood, w/dark brown stain, Jenny, X6445
ROOM in house or apt, young Asian professional, clean, responsible, considerate and quiet, looking for house or apt in Berkeley/Albany/El Cerrito, easy parking, kitchen & living rm privileges, (415) 258-9400, X13
ROOMMATE, beautiful 2 bdrm apt w/view in Twin Peaks (SF), bus across the street, $600/mo, Barbara, (415) 648-0895
SADDLE, light weight, low, good beginner motorcycle in exc running cond, prefer ~500 cc "standard" motorcycle (not sports bike), Jenny, X6445
Adam P. Arkin, STRB
James Bishop, ESD
Barbara A. Brown, EH&S
Michelle S. Chew, LSD
Deborah Davis, ASD
Bernadette Dixon, ASD
Steven Humble, EH&S
Satkartar Khalsa, EET
Alex Lekov, EET
Frank McCormack, PHYS
Wayne G. Mitchell, ASD
Karen Nelson, ICSD
Jeffrey G. Philliber, FACIL
LaKema B Sam, ASD
Jane Tanamachi, HR
Published once a month by the Communications Department for the employees and retirees of Berkeley Lab.
Reid Edwards, Public Affairs Department head
Ron Kolb, Communications Department head
Pamela Patterson, 486-4045, [email protected]
Lyn Hunter, 486-4698, [email protected]
Dan Krotz, 486-4019
Paul Preuss, 486-6249
Lynn Yarris, 486-5375
Ucilia Wang, 495-2402
Allan Chen, 486-4210
David Gilbert, (925) 296-5643
Caitlin Youngquist, 486-4020
Creative Services Office
MS 65, One Cyclotron Road, Berkeley CA 94720
Fax: (510) 486-6641
Berkeley Lab is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy.
Flea Market is now online at www.lbl.gov/fleamarket