By Monica Friedlander
It was 20 years ago that Lab physicist Morris Pripstein and his late colleague, Denis Keefe, sat down in a little office on the Hill and decided to almost single-handedly take on the Soviet Union on behalf of fellow scientists incarcerated behind what was then the impregnable Iron Curtain. Motivated by a strong sense of moral conviction but with no funding, staff, or even a concrete strategy, Pripstein engaged the efforts of other Lab scientists--including then-director Andy Sessler and Nobel laureate Owen Chamberlain--and founded a movement that in two years would swell into a world-wide wave of protest.
At its height the group included more than 8,000 scientists from 44 different countries and eventually played a major role in the release of three of the Soviet Union's most celebrated political dissidents--Andrei Sakharov, Natan Sharansky and Yuri Orlov--as well as lesser known dissidents and refuseniks.
Last week, the New York Academy of Sciences recognized Pripstein's efforts with its Heinz Pagels Human Rights Award for his role in SOS--Scientists for Orlov and Sharansky (later renamed Scientists for Sakharov, Orlov and Sharansky).
Pripstein is a joint winner of the award with Boris Altschuler of Moscow. The award ceremony will be held on Sept. 15 in New York. Previous recipients include Andrei Sakharov himself and Wang Dan, a leader of the 1989 Tiananmen Democracy movement.
"The main thing for me is that this is a tribute to everybody who worked in SOS," said Pripstein, stunned by the news. "Many people here deserve that recognition, including Denis Keefe, who was one of the founders of SOS and died before he could see the fruits of his labor." Other Lab scientists Pripstein noted include Bob Cahn, Michael Chanowitz, Owen Chamberlain, Erwin Friedlander, George Gidal, Gerson Goldhaber, Dave Jackson, Andy Sessler, and Bill Wenzel.
Fellow activists, however, insist that Pripstein does indeed deserve special credit for starting SOS and for his unrelenting work, more often than not in the wee hours of the morning--writing letters, organizing press conferences, raising funds, even placing major expenses on his personal credit card.
"I am delighted that the New York Academy has bestowed this honor on Moishe," said former Lab Director Andy Sessler. "Although many people helped, he was the primary force in developing the organization. He was the one, almost always, who had the ideas about what to do. It may have been something as simple as opening a post office box or an inspired idea such as inviting Sharansky's wife, Avital, to the United States; and of course, conceiving the moratorium concept."
It was this moratorium that set the SOS apart from other efforts. The idea behind it was to exert pressure on the Soviet government by asking members of the international scientific community to pledge themselves to a moratorium on scientific exchanges with scientists of the former Soviet Union. It was an unprecedented, powerful action, as well as one morally troubling at first.
"Scientists always operate with the notion that we must have scientific exchange, that knowledge recognizes no national borders, and that we consider ourselves part of an international community," Pripstein said. "But because of the outrageous behavior of the Soviet authorities and because of the perversion of the scientific exchange process --because they would send over who they wanted, who were not always bona fide scientists but people very loyal to the regime--we felt we had to make a protest."
The conditions Pripstein referred to consisted of a complex web of political repression, violations of human rights accords, international aggression, and most poignantly to the mission of the organization, the imprisonment of dissident scientists.
The first dissident whose imprisonment in 1977 sparked the outrage of the American scientific community was physicist Yuri Orlov, head of the Moscow-Helsinki Watch Group--an organization monitoring compliance with the Helsinki Accords signed by the Soviet Union in 1975. A year later, Anatoly (now known as Natan) Sharansky was tried for treason for his work on behalf of Jewish immigration and imprisoned for nine years. By 1980, human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Andrei Sakharov was exiled to Gorky and the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. A trend of infamy was developing that SOS was determined to turn around.
Unlike other organizations, SOS did not work by collective but individual action. Pripstein, the group's chairman, would suggest a course of action, such as the non-cooperation moratorium, and ask other scientists to pledge themselves to it.
"We felt it was absolutely essential that each individual scientist stand up and commit himself to a particular course of action," Pripstein said. "We were astonished at the outpouring of support."
Within days of announcing the moratorium, 500 scientists signed on. After Sharansky's trial, SOS held a press conference in Washington and 2400 scientists joined the bandwagon. After Sakharov was sent to Gorky the campaign went international and SOS added Sakharov's name to its name. By October of 1980, some 8,000 scientists had cut off their ties with their Soviet counterparts.
Throughout the campaign, Pripstein and his colleagues had one major worry to contend with. Might their efforts not backfire?
"Sometimes when you focus attention on people it brings the fury of the totalitarian state more on the heads of these individuals," Pripstein said. "So we were often accused that we were making matters worse. But in fact we got consistent feedback through unofficial channels, from people like Sakharov and other major dissidents who felt what we were doing was just right."
As it would turn out, letters in support of Pripstein's nomination for the Heinz Pagels Human Rights Award were signed by none other than Yuri Orlov, now at Cornell University; Elena Bonner, Sakharov's wife, still living in Moscow; and by Natan Sharansky, today a minister in the Israeli government.
Membership in the SOS spanned the entire political spectrum. Even French communists, Pripstein remembers, joined their cause. For once, right and left alike were united by what Pripstein described as a "sense of revulsion" against violation of the most basic human rights in the Soviet Union.
By 1986 their efforts, combined with those of various governments and other organizations, paid off when Yuri Orlov was released. Pripstein and other SOS members met him in New York and were invited by President Reagan to the White House. Sharansky and Sakharov (who died in 1989) followed soon thereafter.
"The greatest thing that amazed me about these people was their sense of humanity and compassion," Pripstein says. "Each of them had suffered terribly, each in his own way--either by long incarceration or actual torture. After all they went through I figured they'd come out with deep psychological scars and be really embittered. Instead they were filled with compassion for their fellow men and totally lacking in bitterness."
Two decades after launching SOS, Pripstein is determined that the tide of change in the world not obliterate the records of SOS' efforts, which are testimony to a time he wants preserved for history. To that end, most of the SOS' papers have been transferred to the Hoover Institution Archives at Stanford.
"It's so important for everyone to recognize what the truth is so we don't repeat the mistakes of the past, or they'll come back to haunt us," Pripstein said. "That's why I'm so happy that my papers are going to the Hoover Institution where they'll be accessible to scholars who want to be reminded of what happened in the past."
Pripstein, a Canadian-born scientist who has worked at Berkeley Lab for the past 31 years, is especially proud that this historic movement got started here at Berkeley Lab. That, he says, is no mere accident.
"The fact that it started here reflects something about the Lab," he said. "This was not just a random collection of individuals. There's a certain spirit that's fostered here, which is not just a spirit of free inquiry in science, but something that indicates that we care about the impact of what we do. In the sense that we're deeply concerned about human rights, it was only natural that a group of us got together and reached a critical mass."
Photo: Morris Pripstein (left) met with Nobel laureate Andrei Sakharov soon after the Soviet dissident's release in 1988. Pripstein was the founder of the international human rights organization known as SOS--Scientists for Sakharov, Orlov and Sharansky.
Photo: A group of SOS activists gathered in 1988 at the home of Andrei Sakharov's daughter in Newton, MA. Left to right are Bob Cahn and Morris Pripstein of Berkeley Lab, Andrei Sakharov, Phil Siegelman of San Francisco State University, and Bill Wenzel, also of Berkeley Lab. Kurt Gottfried of Cornell University is in the front.
Photo: Morris Pripstein greets Andrei Sakharov at the New York Academy of Sciences in November of 1988. This month the Academy awarded Pripstein the Heinz Pagels Human Rights Award for his campaign on behalf of Sakharov and other Soviet dissidents. Photo by Bertram Schwarzschild
By Jon Bashor
As the days tick down to the start of the Year 2000, the looming issue having to do with the ability of various computer systems to deal with a year ending in double zeroes has become regular media fare.
The expected problems would result from older computer designs which allocated only two spaces for recording the year in any date-sensitive application. For instance, the year 1998 shows up as 98, and 2000 will be 00, which some computers could equate with the year 1900. Adding to the confusion is the fact that the year 2000 is also a leap year, which gives it an extra day to contend with.
In some applications, such as automated security and safety systems, the results could be catastrophic. For most desktop systems, however, the problem is more likely to be irritating than debilitating. As a result of the possible implications, the U.S. Government has required all of its agencies and facilities to ensure that computer systems are "Year 2000 compliant."
An earlier Currents article explained that most of the Laboratory's computer systems are either already in compliance with Year 2000 (Y2K) requirements, or in the case of older systems, will be replaced with compliant systems before Jan. 1, 2000. That article prompted several inquiries, which will be periodically addressed in Currents.
Here's the first question: Are payroll/direct deposit systems Y2K compliant? How about the banks the checks are being deposited to?
Daisy Guerrero, head of the HR/Payroll Systems Group in the Lab's Information Systems and Services Department, says the Lab's systems are ready. The Lab uses PeopleSoft software for various administrative functions, including the payroll. PeopleSoft products are Y2K compliant, so checks and automatic deposit notices will be generated as usual on Jan. 1, 2000.
To make automatic deposits in employees' bank accounts, the Lab directs its bank to send payment information to the Automated Clearing House (ACH) Network, which then sends the appropriate information to each employee's financial institution. According to Guerrero, this data transmission is valid only for a specific, current date, such as Aug. 1, 1998, and is not automatically triggered by a date, something people fear could be affected by the Y2K problem.
According to the National Auto-mated Clearing House Association (NACHA), which represents more than 13,000 financial institutions through its 35 regional Automated Clearing House associations, all four ACH Operators (American, New York, VISA, and the Federal Reserve) will test and implement Year 2000 compliant systems by the end of 1998. All have indicated that they are ahead of schedule.
A NACHA work group, which included financial institutions, companies, ACH associations, and the federal government, also conducted a comprehensive survey of ACH software vendors and the four ACH Operators, all of whom indicated that Year 2000 solutions were in progress or were already implemented, according to a NACHA news release. Now, it is up to financial institutions to make sure their systems are ready.
"The ACH Operators are ready, ACH software is being reprogrammed and financial institutions are starting to look at all of their systems," said Holly Merrill, president and CEO of the American Clearing House Association, an ACH Operator. For their part, NACHA and ACH associations are educating financial institutions, software providers and third-party processors on the importance of planning and resolving the two-digit date dilemma. Concerned employees may want to check with their own banks or credit unions.
Guerrero, for one, says she's confident her paycheck will show up on schedule when the Year 2000 arrives.
Future issues of Currents will address other Y2K-related topics. For more information about Y2K issues, visit the Lab's web site at: http://www.lbl.gov/ICSD/CIS/y2k.html.
Photo: Year 2000 symbol.
By Paul Preuss
Microbiology as a modern scientific discipline may be said to have begun in 1859, when Louis Pasteur performed a set of elegant experiments that finally laid to rest the "theory" of spontaneous generation. For almost a century and a half, most of what we know about microbes comes from studying them in the laboratory.
"Yet fewer than one to five percent of the microbes we find in nature will grow in the lab," says Tamas Torok of the Life Sciences Division. "The first challenge is to find out who's out there." Torok is a member of the Center for Environmental Biotechnology, a group of scientists from different divisions and disciplines headed by Jennie Hunter-Cevera of Earth Sciences.
The probable reason why so few microbes can be grown artificially, says Torok, has to do with the difficulty of simulating natural conditions. In nature, a gram of soil may contain as many as 10 billion individual single-celled organisms, representing some 10,000 different species. "For a culture growing on nutrient in a dish, metabolism is simple and food is plentiful," Torok says. "In nature, microbial metabolism is complex and lean."
As a result of Mother Nature's leanness, it may take a population of microbes in the deep subsurface of the Earth as long as a thousand years to produce a new generation; in the lab scientists are used to seeing new generations in anywhere from a few weeks to a few minutes.
"Microbes need the right mix of nutrients and the right surfaces to grow on," adds Stanley Goldman, Torok's colleague. "In nature they're usually interdependent with other types, and they can be sensitive to change. Some microbes have been found as deep as three kilometers, using hydrogen as a source of energy. In the laboratory we can only grow them as a consortium."
Goldman and Torok have been working to survey and characterize the complex microbial communities found in damaged environments, including closed military bases contaminated by spilled fuel and other chemicals, watersheds polluted by agricultural run-off, and sites used for high-level radioactive waste. Their goal is to understand how these intricate, invisible communities behave and whether some of the microbes in them can help remediate their toxic surroundings.
The potential uses of such information are manifold. Through oxidation or reduction, some microbes can change metals from toxic to less toxic, or from mobile to less mobile. Others can metabolize toxics such as toluene and trichloroethylene.
A vast majority of the genomes in the world are microbial, and probably most of the world's actual biomass too. Many useful new enzymes and new antibiotics are waiting to be discovered in nature, a goal that is already being pursued by commercial companies such as Roche, Novo Nordisk, and the Diversa Corporation of San Diego, which has offered to return royalties to the owner of the place where useful microorganisms are found--for example, to the National Park Service for interesting creatures recovered from the hot springs and geysers of Yellowstone National Park.
Goldman and Torok use several methods of identifying microbes found in nature, including gene sequencing and biomarker analysis. To secure large numbers of organisms, the researchers, joined by Jennie Hunter-Cevera, have also developed techniques for imitating nature in the lab--among them, growing cultures with highly restricted nutrients in cool darkness and on samples of rock or soil from the collection site.
In gene sequencing, very mixed natural populations are first "lysed," or broken open. Genes called ssrRNAs are amplified, cloned, and then automatically sequenced. These genes code for the nucleic acid component of the ribosome's small subunit. (Ribosomes are tiny two-part functional units in the cells of all living creatures which read messenger-RNA sequences and assemble proteins.) Although DNA from many different kinds of bacteria (prokaryotes) and fungi, algae, and protozoa (eukaryotes) may be present together in the broken cell mixture, their ssrRNA sequences, which are highly conserved, can be readily distinguished by small differences--differences which can also reveal something of the evolutionary relationships among the organisms.
"It's important to remember that we're identifying phylotypes here, not species," Torok says, emphasizing that "we can answer the question, `Who's out there?' in terms of phylogenetic trees--evolutionary relationships--not in terms of specific genetic identities."
"For identifying natural populations, ssrRNA sequencing is not a panacea," says Torok. "We miss some organisms because they don't all respond to our methods of extraction from the soil. The cell walls of some are a lot tougher than others--they don't break--so their DNA isn't well represented after extraction. And amplification with PCR depends on using primers based on known organisms; we may be missing some that are completely unrelated."
"Nevertheless," Goldman says, "we've already got a much better real-world view of who's out there."
Goldman and Torok also perform biomarker analysis of fatty acids from the cell membranes of the creatures in the same environmental samples and compare the results with those from gene sequencing. The goal is to devise a range of identification methods, a net with a finer mesh.
Says Goldman, "We're developing isolation techniques and novel probes, such as fluorescent tags, to rapidly identify organisms in unexplored settings. We're also working on microarray techniques to survey the relative abundance of different individual DNA sequences in complex samples from entire communities."
Torok and Goldman's study of communities of microorganisms is a prime example of the Center for Environmental Biotechnology's determination to build bridges among many different scientists, disciplines, and institutions. It is a key research program that promises to produce benefits for the Department of Energy and other federal agencies, both within the state of California and across the nation, in both the public and private sectors.
The Center for Environmental Biotechnology's web page can be found at at http://www-esd.lbl.gov/CEB/ceb.html.
Photo: Stanley Goldman and Tamas Torok of the Center for Environmental Biotechnology survey communities of microbes living in contaminated environments. Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt (XBD9709-03710)
By Eli Kintisch
A team of Berkeley Lab programmers and experts in building technology and 3-D imaging are taking the science of building design into the twenty-first century with a new tool: the Virtual Building Laboratory (VBL).
"We want to create a simulation-based tool that lets one explore the complex energy interactions of a building," said Steve Selkowitz, co-leader of the project and head of the Lab's Building Technologies Department. The project combines the efforts of the Environmental Energy Technologies Division (EETD), the Information and Computing Sciences Division (ICSD), and the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC).
The aim of the VBL project is to use energy simulations and 3-D visualization technology to allow scientists to test building performance and to explore, analyze and alter materials and designs in virtual real-time, bypassing expensive laboratory experiments. As the project progresses, better tools will be developed to allow more architects and engineers to test building designs on personal computers.
The first step in this collaboration is to upgrade RADIANCE, a desktop lighting simulation program, in order to create an interactive simulation of actual lighting effects in virtual buildings. Unlike other virtual 3-D environments, such as video games, in which lighting is not accurate or realistic, RADIANCE takes into account a room's geometry, its actual lighting sources, the visual properties of surfaces, and weather to simulate the light the human eye would see at each point in a room. Even glare can be simulated and quantified.
"It's a what-you-see-is-what-you-get tool," says Selkowitz. "If you can't see it in the simulation, you shouldn't see it in the real space."
To accomplish all this in a single frame, a computer must calculate the path of millions of light rays bouncing off each surface of the room, something which demands massive computational firepower. Developers in ICDC's Visualization Group face a difficult task: they must use the RADIANCE simulation to capture detailed lighting images while delivering pictures quickly enough to allow users to explore the virtual building in real time. Given the millions of light interactions in a room, a typical PC can take up to 10 hours to compute a single image. To simulate motion, the new program must create 10 to 30 detailed pictures per second.
The task requires the deployment of the Lab's most powerful computer--NERSC's Cray T3E. Even so, calculating the path of every ray is a computational nightmare.
"You never have enough computer power--even with the Cray--so you limit the number of rays you're calculating," said Nancy Johnston, head of the Visualization Group. A classic solution is called ray tracking--calculating only the rays that reach the human eye instead of every light beam in the room. Another trick, known as eye tracking, assigns less detail to the areas of the room on which the eye does not focus as much. Even with these methods, over 24 million rays must be calculated per picture.
Currently programmers can run a small image at 10 frames per second, although a full-screen picture at 20 frames per second is expected to be available in the fall, said Stephen Lau, project manager for RADIANCE. Other goals are to control simulations over the Internet, so that they can be viewed at remote locations, and to adapt the program to work on office computer networks, allowing architects in small offices to use it. In the future, as VBL is further developed, Selkowitz's team will try to display non-visible aspects of buildings, such as heat movement, pollutant flows and comfort levels. As the program begins to simulate more aspects of buildings, the results will be verified with laboratory tests.
By using computer simulations to devise creative efficiency solutions, engineers can often surpass energy requirements without following specific building code guidelines. Better building models can help improve indoor air quality and prevent the "sick building" syndrome, in which design flaws require costly post-construction changes. Energy experts estimate that over half of the $200 billion spent annually in building energy consumption could be saved with more efficient materials and building schemes.
As a leader in the building energy performance field, Selkowitz coordinates a variety of projects to improve building efficiency. Under his direction, researchers in the Building Technologies Department study and design better light bulbs, window glazings and building control systems. Computer programs that Selkowitz's department has developed, such as DOE-2, RADIANCE and WINDOW 4.0, have become industry benchmarks, used by architects and engineers worldwide to increase building energy efficiency.
These tools may be seen on the web at http://eetd.lbl.gov/CBS/ EEsoftware.html.
Selkowitz believes that the EETD and ICSD partnership will help maintain Berkeley Lab's leadership in the energy simulation field in the years to come.
Eli Kintisch is a summer intern from Yale University currently working for the Public Information Department.
Photo: Using RADIANCE to create realistic images of future buildings, engineers will be able to design more energy efficient environments and avoid flaws in lighting designs.
The FY99 energy and water bill (H.R. 4060) passed by the House contains a provision that would end DOE regulation of environment, health and safety at Berkeley Lab by March 31, 1999, and transfer the responsibility to "appropriate" federal, state and local agencies. Since the Senate version of this funding bill contained no such provision, the two chambers will have to resolve their differences.
Last December DOE chose Berkeley Lab to pilot a program intended to test the feasibility of external EH&S regulation. However, the department was not planning to conduct this test until after the year 2000. In a story reported by Inside Energy this week, David McGraw, Berkeley Lab's EH&S division director, is quoted as saying that the Lab is comfortable with the moved-up schedule.
"We're certainly prepared to live with it," McGraw said. "We think it's doable."
Although the House bill did not spell out which regulatory authorities would assume responsibility, it is presumed that the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would be involved.
"We think we're a good model to start this process with," McGraw told Inside Energy. "If we get it right at a lab like ours, we think we can provide guidance and vision for how to proceed in incremental fashion in the rest of the department."
In response to the House bill, DOE officials say that numerous legal, financial, technical, and procedural questions should be answered before a change to external EH&S regulations is made.
Among the unanswered questions are which authorities would regulate specific activities at the Lab and whether DOE or the University of California, which manages the Lab for the department, would hold the licenses.
McGraw told Inside Energy that the Lab is a good early candidate for external regulation because, unlike other DOE facilities, it does not operate nuclear reactors and other facilities that normally raise EH&S concerns.
"It makes sense from a number of perspectives, including the credibility it would provide our environment, safety and health program, by measuring it against the same standards industry is measured against," he said. "We have excellent programs, and we're willing to be measured against that standard." -- Lynn Yarris
Photo: Uli Dahmen, director of the National Center for Electron Microscopy, chats with David Howitt of UC Davis and Daniel Chemla, head of Material Sciences and the ALS, during an NCEM symposium held at Berkeley Lab on June 25.
Entitled "Electron Microscopy in Science and Technology," the event featured talks on recent forefront applications of electron optical characterization to problems in fundamental and applied science. Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt (XBD9806-01681)
On June 30 outgoing Energy Secre-tary Federico Peña bid farewell to Department of Energy employees as he concluded his five-and-a-half years as a member of the Clinton Administra-tion and year-and-a-half as head of the DOE.
Peña overviewed the department's top priorities during that time, such as ensuring the nation's energy security, cleaning up the environmental legacy of the Cold War, safeguarding the national security, and promoting science and technology.
He highlighted some of the department's major initiatives and praised the research being conducted at DOE facilities. "We continue to boast the most amazing scientific facilities in the world," he said, "and our scientists continue to garner top honors from the highest echelons of the scientific community. From Nobel prizes to Discover awards, the Department is continually recognized as one of the nation's leading scientific enterprises."
DOE achievements Peña referred to include development of a Comprehen-sive National Energy Strategy, the closure and cleaning up of contaminated sites throughout the country, certifying the safety of the country's nuclear weapons stockpile without underground nuclear testing, addressing the issue of global climate change, and developing educational initiatives linking schools with vast technological resources over the Internet.
Peña especially stressed the importance of making "a lasting contribution to world peace by providing the scientific tools that make the Compre-hensive Test Ban Treaty possible."
The Secretary thanked his staff and all employees of the DOE for their efforts and expressed his confidence that he is leaving the department in very good hands. "Under the leadership of Secretary-Designate Bill Richardson, whom I have known for years, I have every confidence that this team will continue to serve our nation with dedication, innovation, and most of all, energy."
As if to give proof to Leon Leder-man's "We don't know nothing!" proclamation, an advisory panel to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) last week announced that electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are a potential human carcinogen. This announcement may or may not breathe new life into the debate over whether electrical power lines cause cancer. Even some panelists quickly sought to downplay their own report.
"I don't think you could conclude there's a real problem with EMFs," said vice chair Arnold Brown, dean emeritus of the University of Wiscon-sin Medical School in Madison.
Many thought the debate had been settled once and for all after first a National Academy of Sciences panel in 1996 found "no conclusive and consistent evidence" for harm from residential exposure to EMFs generated by power lines, appliances and other sources. Then, last year, a major National Cancer Institute (NCI) epidemiological study found no evidence of childhood leukemia from EMF exposure.
The NIH panel's conclusions are not based on new data but on a new analysis of data pooled from earlier studies.
The panel voted 19 to 9 to classify low-frequency EMFs as a "possible human carcinogen" and called their vote "a conservative, public health decision based on limited evidence."
The panel did urge that more research be done on the issue. "If there is a link between EMFs and cancer," says panelist Jerry Williams of Johns Hopkins University, "it's very small, very subtle, and very complex, and something we don't understand at any level."
Jean Lawther of the Procurement Department received the "1997 Buyer of the Year" award from the Northern California Supplier Development Council for outstanding efforts and personal innovations toward the development of minority business with Berkeley Lab.
ublished twice a month by the Public Information Department for the employees
and retirees of Ernest Orlando Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Ron Kolb, PID department head.
EDITOR: Monica Friedlander, X2248 (495-2248 from outside),
STAFF WRITERS: Paul Preuss, X6249; Lynn Yarris, X5375
CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Jon Bashor, X5849; Allan Chen, X4210; Jeffery Kahn X4019
FLEA MARKET / CALENDAR: Jacqueline Noble, X5771
firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
Public Information Department, Berkeley Lab, One Cyclotron Road, Berkeley CA
Tel: (510) 486-5771 Fax: (510) 486-6641
Berkeley Lab is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy.
By Paul Preuss
Eric Norman of the Nuclear Science Division launched the Public Informa-tion Department's Summer Lecture Series last Wednesday, July 1, with a talk on neutrino astronomy.
When Japan's Super-Kamiokande experiment reported this spring that it had found evidence for neutrino oscillation, and that muon neutrinos differ in mass from other flavors--and therefore must have some mass, as yet undetermined--the news was hardly a surprise to researchers who for a third of a century have known that much is lacking in our knowledge of neutrinos.
Norman's interesting review of the experiments that have been done over the years, including what they measure and how they measure it, was a suitable lead-in to his introduction to the Sud-bury Neutrino Experiment (SNO) in Canada, in which the Lab is a major participant, and which may serve to resolve many of the questions that remain about neutrinos and the cosmic objects that are still producing them.
Norman's audience seemed to be an equal mix of students, interested non-experts, and neutrino specialists.
Norman was unaware that the first of the Summer Lecture Series would begin with a "sneak preview" of "The Joy of Discovery," the new 10-minute video that will be used to introduce the Lab to visitors and newcomers (copies of which are now available in the library). Norman is one of the people interviewed for the video whose face did not end up on the cutting-room floor. Indeed, he said, "If you take away from this talk what I said in the video--that we are trying to weigh the neutrino to determine the fate of the universe--you will have gotten the main point I want to make."
The lecture series continued on July 8 with a fascinating tour of the nanoworld conducted by Uli Dahmen, director of the National Center for Electron Microscopy (NCEM). Dahmen illustrated his talk by controlling NCEM's High-Voltage Microscope directly from the Bldg. 50 auditorium: images of tiny crystals of lead melting and recrystallizing on demand were projected on the big screen, demonstrating the Internet "collaboratory" that links NCEM with other research centers around the country.
The Summer Lecture Series continues this month with talks by Horst Simon, division director for the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) and Eva Nogales, a researcher in the Life Sciences Division.
Simon will speak on July 15 about "Parallel Supercomputing's Golden Age: 1992-2002." NERSC is the principal supplier of production high-performance computing services to the national energy research community. Simon's research focuses on the development of high performance algorithms for vector and parallel machines.
On July 22 Eva Nogales will discuss "A Family Portrait of Tubulin: The Protein that Built the Tubes that Built the Cell." Nogales recently earned national recognition for her three-dimensional images of the atomic model of tubulin, the first highly-detailed look at one of nature's most essential proteins. Understanding the structure of tubulin could prove valuable in anti-cancer treatments in the future.
The lectures are held on Wednes-days from noon to 1 p.m. in the Bldg. 50 auditorium. Bring your lunch and join in the discussion.
Photos: Horst Simon of NERSC and Eva Nogales of Life Sciences will be the speakers for the next two Summer Lectures on July 15 and July 22. (XBD9712-05056-03 and XBD9801-00102-02)
The final lecture in the Summer Lecture Series--Ronald Krauss' talk on diet, genes and heat disease--will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 4, instead of Wednesday, Aug. 5, as originally scheduled. The time and place remain the same--noon in the Bldg. 50 auditorium.
he recent announcement of the proposed merger of communication goliaths AT&T and Tele-Commu-nications, Inc (TCI) may prove to be a watershed moment in the ongoing rollout of the Information Age. Although the technology is ripe, thus far cost has slowed the march of high-speed digital services to homes across America.
Writing in the July 2 New York Times, correspondent John Markoff reports that this corporate match should hasten the long awaited convergence of residential telephone, cable television, and Internet access. According to Markoff, AT&T-TCI plans to accelerate events by upgrading TCI's one-way cable network to a two-way service, one capable of carrying digital video and sound both in and out of homes.
The San Francisco Bay Area is TCI's largest service region, with 1.5 million customers. TCI owns a fiber optic ring that encircles the Bay Area, which it now uses to distribute television programming. The company has already upgraded about 10 percent of these customers to two-way cables, and hopes that figure will go up to 50 percent by the end of the year and 90 percent by the end of the century. Once two-way cable is installed, the merged company will be able to offer old-fashioned "circuit switched" telephone service over the cable system.
By the fall of 1999, a new generation of cable boxes that use "packet switching" should be available through retail stores. These boxes will permit the complete integration of voice, data and video. Markoff says AT&T-TCI's ability to exploit these developments will significantly reduce the cost of providing combined communication services. He does not hazard a guess as to what the service will cost consumers.
The Lab's Public Information Department has created an upgraded Visitor Information website at http://www.lbl.gov/visitor-info.html. Linked directly to the Lab's home page, the site provides maps of the Lab, directions, local accommodations, restaurants, general information about the Lab, an organization chart, a phone book, and a calendar of events.
The Department of Energy has published a significantly enhanced website at http://www.doe.gov, with buttons that take users to recent news releases, speeches, congressional testimony, upcoming events as well as offices and programs within DOE. The department also has begun publishing DOE Pulse (http://www.ornl.gov/news/pulse/pulse_home.htm), which highlights research developments at the national laboratories. -- Jeffery Kahn
A symposium will be held at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center on Friday, July 31, on the occasion of Sid Drell's retirement as professor and deputy director of SLAC. The day-long event will review topics in high-energy physics and public policy to which he has made important contributions.
Speakers will include Richard Garwin, Robert Jaffe, T. D. Lee, Chris Llewellyn Smith, Theodore Postol, Joan Rohlfing, and Tung-Mow Yan. The meeting will be followed by a dinner with speaker James Bjorken.
Additional information can be found on the symposium website at http://www.slac.stanford.edu/ conf/drell98/.
Participants are asked to register online at that website. No fee will be charged for the meeting, although there will be a cost for the dinner.
For further information contact Nancy Hendry at (650) 926-3989, fax (650) 926-2395.
The Division Office of General Sciences--comprised of AFRD, Nuclear Science and Physics Divisions--is holding an open house on Thursday, July 9, from 3 to 5 p.m. to let people know of their new location. This is the first time that all three divisions are located together. The open house will be held in Bldg. 50, rooms 4049 and 4037.
The Procurement Department invites everyone to learn more about the latest online systems for obtaining supplies and services. The event will be held in the cafeteria lobby on Thursday, July 16, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Procurement representatives will demonstrate the new electronic systems for ordering and tracking purchases, including NetREQ, Procard, System Contracts, and IRIS. Literature and application materials will be on hand. For more information, visit the Procurement website at http://purch. lbl.gov or call John Speros at X4569.
The fifth and final workshop of the Effective Communication and Career Series, co-organized by LBNL Postdoc-toral Society and the UCB Graduate Division, will be held on July 23 in the Bldg. 66 auditorium from 4 to 7:30 p.m. The sessions are free and open to all Lab personnel. Speakers will address the basics of giving a good talk, teaching and speaking to lay audiences, and giving a good scientific talk.
To register for the workshop, send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Indicate in your message the subject "public speaking," and include your name, extension, mailstop, and e-mail. You can also register online through the website listed below. Enrollment is limited, so make sure to register by July 18. Confirma-tion of your registration will be sent around that time. For more information visit the Postdoctoral Society website at http://white.lbl.gov/~postdoc/.
The full text and photographs of Currents are also published on the World Wide Web. You can find a link to Currents on the Lab's home page (http:// www.lbl.gov) under the heading "Publications." The site allows users to do searches of past articles. To set up your computer to access the web, call the Mac and PC Support Group at X6858.
Photo: A herd of goats, photographed here on the slope behind Bldg. 47, munch their way from Orinda to Berkeley, acting as one of Mother Nature's more effective fire control systems. By cleaning out the dry brush and undergrowth they reduce the fire hazards while making for an interesting change of scenery on the Hill. Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt (XBD9806-01675-03)
Work began on Monday on upgrades to the north elevator of the Bldg. 50 complex (50A) and will continue through Aug. 17. The project will modernize the 35-year-old traction elevator and eliminate the frequent breakdowns. The elevator will remain out of service for the duration of the project.
The upgrade will provide new elevator car doors and door operating equipment, a new suspension system for the outside doors, reconditioning for the drive motors, and a new elevator control system. The car interior will get a fresh coat of paint, a new floor, and new control panels and floor indicator lights. The elevator call buttons and indicating lights at each floor will be replaced.
While construction is in progress, signs will indicate detours to and from Bldg. 50A. All floors in Bldg. 50A except for the first floor are accessible from the 50B elevator.
Persons with disabilities will have access to the corridor through Room 1165, which joins the first floors of Bldgs. 50A and 50B. Proximity card holders requiring such access on a continuing basis may contact Martin Dooly by e-mail (MKDooly@ lbl.gov). To request one-time escorted access, go to the NERSC control room (Bldg. 50B-1217) or call X7600.
For over 40 years, Berkeley Lab and the Blood Bank of Alameda-Contra Costa Counties have partnered to help save lives by organizing four annual blood drives onsite.
"One way or another, Berkeley Lab has made a difference in the lives of many people," says Theresa Evagelista of the Blood Bank of Alameda-Contra Costa Counties. "We would like to thank your employees for their generosity. Because of you we were able to collect 85 units of blood during our last blood drive for the 27 hospitals we serve."
The next blood drive at Berkeley Lab is scheduled for July 29 and July 30--two days to accommodate more people--from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Bldg. 2-100B. Donors are urged to make an appointment as soon as possible by calling X4009 in order to help organizers plan the event. For the first time, T-shirts will be offered to donors.
Evagelista reminds us that a transfusion takes place every three seconds in the United States, and that not even the most advanced technology can save lives without an adequate supply of human blood. "There are many women, men and children who are benefiting today from your blood donations," she says. "And they will need blood tomorrow and the next day. You are needed to save a life."
For more information or to register, call Helane Carpenter at X4009 or e-mail her at mhcarpenter@ lbl.gov.
The final lecture in the Summer Lecture Series--Ronald Krauss' talk on diet, genes and heat disease--will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 4, instead of Wednesday, Aug. 5, as originally scheduled. The time and place remain the same--noon in the Bldg. 50 auditorium.
Ferkeley Lab's Science Exploration Camp still has openings for its sixth week ("Water World")--Aug. 31 to Sept. 4. All other weeks are filled. Children will end the summer learning about the most important substance in their lives: water-- its properties, phases, cycles through the environment, and how we use it. The camp is open to school-age children of Lab employees. For more information visit the camp website at http://eande.lbl.gov/ EA/SEC/ secindex.htm.
Training schedules, course descriptions, and an enrollment form are now available for PeopleSoft Human Resource Information System (HRIS) and Financial Management System (FMS) courses on the Lab's Employee Development and Training web page (http://www.lbl.gov/Workplace/EDT/computers/computer.html). There are no class fees for any of these courses. For enrollment information contact Carma Hamer at X2288.
Two PeopleSoft HRIS courses are available for employees who need to access or update personnel data. Enrollment for training requires supervisor's approval. For additional HRIS course information, contact Amy Lowe at X5044 (firstname.lastname@example.org). FMS training courses are open to employees who need to access the Laboratory financial information. An FMS User Group meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 21, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. in the Bldg. 50 auditorium. Contact Joyce Putnam at X5940 (email@example.com) for FMS course information.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is sponsoring a two-day Women's Technical and Professional Symposium on Oct. 15-16 at the San Ramon Marriott. The event is designed to showcase the contributions of women at DOE and DOE contractors. Abstracts are now being solicited. The deadline for Berkeley Lab employees has been extended to July 17. For more information, visit the web site at www.llnl.gov/ llnl_only/WTPS, or contact Natalie Roe (firstname.lastname@example.org).
To pre-register, send name, employee ID number, extension, course title, EH&S course code, and date of course to EH&S: via the web (http://www-ehs.lbl.gov/training/registration/, e-mail (EHS-Train@lbl.gov), mail (EH&S Training, 90-0026, room 16C), fax (X4805) or phone (X7366).
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
July 10 - July 30
TUES., JULY 14
Noon, Bldg. 26-109
FMS USER GROUP MEETING
1:30 - 3 p.m., Bldg. 50 auditorium
7:30 - 4:30, Bldg. 54 parking lot
7 a.m. - 1 p.m., Bldg. 2-100B
Items for the calendars may be sent via e-mail to currents_calendar@ lbl.gov, faxed to X6641 or mailed to Bldg. 65B. The deadline for the July 24 issue is 5 p.m. Monday, July 20.
`82 SEARAY, 22.5 ft, 260 Merc outdrive, family ski/camp boat, sleeps 4, head, galley, 310 hrs, delta canvas, vhf, depth sounder, trim tabs, very good cond, incl Trailrite tandem axle trailer, $9,500/b.o., Bob, (925) 376-2211
`86 ALLEGRO, Class A Motor home, 27' loaded, 4 Kwgen, ac, microwave, 4 burner stove w/ oven, lg refrig, sleeps six +, split bath, queen size bed in back, fully self contained, dbl insulated, Chev Chassis, $20,000/b.o., Jim (925) 284-2353
`86 TOYOTA Corolla, auto, 103K mi, good cond, new tires, $1800/b.o., Andrei, 704-9830
`87 HONDA Civic, 4 dr sedan, 166K mi, auto, ac, new am/fm cassette, power/tilt steering, good tires, recent brake work, body ok, very clean, runs great, $2200, Yoonho, X5305, 232-2751
`88 MERCURY Tracer, 98K mi, new bearings, new battery, new brakes, smog, $1,600, Fabia, X7734, (415) 751-1407
`89 FORD Tempo, auto 4 dr, white, power locks, mirrors, steering, ac, cruise control, new brakes, am/fm cass, 96K mi, $2300/b.o. Barbara, X7840, (925) 939-7754
`90 NISSAN Stanza, 4 dr, at, ac, cruise control, power steering, brakes, mirrors, windows, door locks, tilt wheel, abs, am/fm, stereo tape, much more, 119K mi, (most freeway), exc cond, clean outside & inside, white w/ gray interior, new belts, registered to May 99, $4195/b.o., Wang, X5315, 845-9079
`91 HONDA Civic, 4 dr sedan LX, power door locks, power drive seat, power window, power steering, am/fm radio, 38K mi, one owner, $7,500, Yen Le, X4652, 548-0664
`92 TOYOTA Corolla, 4 dr sedan, auto, exc cond, 59K mi, a/c, am/fm stereo, pwr steering, new tires & rear window defroster, main 55K mi check up has been done, $6500, Jia 845-5154
`92 YAMAHA, 28K mi, cosmetically challenged, reliable, runs well, good battery, going overseas, must sell, $900, Judith, X7144
`93 TOYOTA Camry LE, silver, 62K mi, well maintained, $9800, use `til 8/22, Kwang, X5483, 601-6537
`93 FORD Taurus SHO, white, a/c, a/t, 3.2L-220HP, dual air bag, pwr locks, pwr windows, abs, 10 cd changer, 54K mi, well maintained, $12,000/b.o, Chu-Chung, X5400, 235-3983
`95 MAZDA 626 DX, standard, dark green, 43K mi (mostly freeway), avail around 9/98, blue book value/b.o., Minxue, 642-1440, 845-9578
`96 VW Golf GTI, 2 doors, ac, new tires, 29K mi, abs, black, VW warranty, sunroof, dual air bags, power steering, stereo, one owner, exc cond, $14,000, Martin, X4800
BOAT, 15.5 ft alum runabout w/ trailer, 55 hp, Evinrude, good for fishing or skiing, old but in good shape, electric winch, new cover, extra wheel, more, $1699, Ken, X6476
CAMPER SHELL, brown/tan fiberglass for short bed Toyota pick up, $200, Rich, X6015
NORTH BERKELEY, 1 bdrm in beautiful 3 bdrm house, panoramic 3 bridge view, hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings, private bth & deck, lots of windows, 10 min walk to Bldg. 90 & campus, live w/ grad student & freelance editor/writer couple, $667/mo, 7/15-12/31, Cooper, X5417
ROCKRIDGE, home, brand new, 2 story, 3 bdrm, 2.5 bth, 10 min from campus, w/ d, all appliances, hardwood floors, deck, yard, fireplace, 1 car garage plus carport, avail, 2nd wk of July, 1 yr lease, $2400/mo, Cole, X4357
BRITA Water Filter Pitcher + Box of 3 new filters, $20; AT&T Answering Machine, $15; Area Rug, off white w/ design, 57x, $30, Rae, 597-1079
BUILDING MATERIALS: 2 solar panels w/ one tank, 4X6.5', $70 ea; 4 dbl French doors, wood frame, single-lite glass, fair cond, $30 ea; interior solid wood panel doors, various sizes, b.o.; 5 bulb brass plated chandelier, $15; 1/4" plate glass, various sizes, b.o.; galv pipe, 1/2" & 3/4", weathered, but unused, b.o.; 20 pc dinnerware, service for 4, $35; 20 pc flatware, service for 4, $25; kids "Fun Dome: climbing structure, 8.5' dia, 4.3' tall, $50, Guy, X4703, Kathy, 482-1777
COMPUTER DESK, 28"x26"x 33"H, walnut color, w/ sliding keyboard and printer drawers, $45, Monica, 601-5757
DOORS, set of front residential doors w/ lookout windows, 29.5"x79", stained brown, recommend sanding/re-staining, you pick up, $150, Rich, X6015
CITY-MOUNTAIN Bike, $50/b.o., Gunther, X5600, 654-6203 eve.
Franciscan dinnerware, fresh fruit pattern, four 5 pc place settings, $85; coffee percolator, GE, 30 cups, $20, Helga, 525-9441
FUTON, twin size, $30; 2 dressers, 3-drawer, $15, 5-drawer, $30; nightstand, $8; dinner table, $15; 2 halogens, $5 each, Michelle, 849-9572
KNEEBOARDS, water skis, downriggers, gas tank, drift chute, swivel seats, X7705, (707) 746-5339
PEAVEY DPM 3SE +, 61 note music keyboard w/ built-in sequencer, foot pedal, manual, program & extra sound disks, $650, Flavio, X5997, 841-9196 aft 6 pm
MICROWAVE, almost new, $75, Joyashree, X7081, 841-1071
MOVING SALE, wood dresser, 6 drawers, $40; vase lamp, $5, Jia, 845-5154
MOVING SALE, king size bed, $130; 3 brand new queen futons w/ spring mattresses, $180; 2 desks, $50 ea; chairs, from $10; 2 tables, from $50; book shelves, $60; drawers, from $70; new microwave, $70; kitchen items and much more, Fabia, X7734, (415) 751-1407
MOVING SALE, computer desk; microwave cart; rattan/glass lamp table; blk wood dbl size futon w/ extra innerspring mattress; Dremel skil saw; Singer sewing machine; golf clubs; girl's sturdy bike, badminton rackets; ice skates; x-country skis & boots; surf board; trampoline; 2 electronic typewriters, Carol, X5060
OHAUS triple beam balance 3200, #750-30. Range 0.1-261gm, b/o, Mark, x6581
SIDE TABLE, rustic pine w/ honey finish, drawer & cupboard-style door, $50; TV, 20" RCA, $75; queen bed, frame, mattress, boxspring, & brass headboard, $170 or will sell separately, all prices negotiable, Phil, X7875
STAMPS, American and Canadian, dating back to the 30's, b.o.; 2 person tent, $40/b.o.; 4 person tent, $75/b.o., both less than 2 yrs old, Olaf, X6676
TABLE, glass top, black fanned legs, w/ 2 black (slightly damaged) chairs, $50, computer desk w/ sliding keyboard and printer drawer, $45, Monica, 601-5757 (eve)
TICKETS to Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Comedy of Errors evening of 7/24, Uncle Vanya matinee on 7/25, can also incl B&B reservation, Johanna, (415) 441-9592
TOWELL RACK, brass tubing, 6 ft high, made to fit over toilet in bthrm, $60 new, asking $30/b.o., Marlene, X6005
TV, 19" w/ remote & antenna, $90; bike w/ rear rack/u-lock/pump, $55; rice cooker w/ stainless steel steam tray, non-sticky coating, $35; radio/cassette/record/player, fm/am stereo, dual decks, $10, water filter pitcher, $8; all above are 1.5 yrs w/ orig manual & box; telephones, $7 & $3; lamps, $6 & $3, Wang, X5315, 845-9079
WOODEN Map Case, 36"Hx40"D x52"W, 10 drawer, soft wood, you pick up & refinish, $250, Marilee, X4145
YARD SALE, 385 45th St, Oakland, Sunday, 7/19, 10 am - 4 pm, Christa, X7770
GUITAR tutor for adult beginner, lessons somewhere close to the Lab is ideal, Gerry, 495-2411
HOUSING for LBNL employee/UCB student, 1 bdrm inlaw +, North Berkeley campus area, Doug, X7141
HOUSING, 3-4 bdrm apt/house in East Bay for visiting professor and his family from Spain, Aug. 1-Sept. 30, e-mail: email@example.com
HOUSING for visiting scientist & wife from Sweden, already in Berkeley, 1-2 bdrm apt or house, convenient from LBNL, for long term rental from 7/98, Jonny, X5432
JETTA, 1996 or newer w/ fewer than 30K mi, sunroof & 5 spd transmission, Steve, X7855
ROOM in a house for a female grad, arch student, LBNL student assistant for a year begin Aug. 1, preferably in North or West Berkeley, non smoker, no pets, currently paying $350/mo, Smita, X6724, 524-9576
SPACE Heater for cold San Francisco summer, Johanna, (415) 441-9592
BAHAMAS CONDO, 1 bdrm in Taino Beach Resort, sleeps up to 4, every amenity, on beautiful beach, pool/tennis, maid service, $500/week, Marlene, X6005
TAHOE KEYS at South Lake Tahoe, 3 bdrm house, 2.5 bth, on the water, fenced yard, quiet area, close to many attractions, great view of water & mtns, $150/night (2 night min), Bob, (925) 376-2211
KITTENS, three adorable, playful & affectionate, purr loudly when held, 2 long-haired, male & female, black, 1 female short-haired, Robin, X4141
Submissions must include name, affiliation, extension, and home telephone number. Ads must be submitted in writing--via e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org), fax (X6641), or delivered/ mailed to Bldg. 65B.
The deadline for the July 24 issue is Friday, July 17.
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@example.com
Lyn Hunter, 486-4698, firstname.lastname@example.org
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