Meeting Minutes
January 23, 2004

2 pm - 6 pm

SSRLUO-EC Contact List
Previous SSRLUO Minutes

Attendees:   Joy Andrews, Uwe Bergmann, Benjamin Bostick, Richard Brennan, Linda Brinen, Lisa Downward, Lisa Dunn, Britt Hedman, Keith Hodgson, Cathy Knotts, Richard Lee, Piero Pianetta, Tom Rabedeau, Martina Ralle, Jackie Robleto, Deanne Jackson Rudd, Tim Stemmler, Mike Toney, Glenn Waychunas

A meeting of the SSRL Users' Organization Executive Committee (SSRLUO-EC) was held on January 23, 2004, immediately following the open session of the SSRL Proposal Review Panel meeting. A summary of issues discussed follows. Follow up or action items are highlighted in bold.

  • Benjamin Bostick, SSRLUO-EC Chair, called the meeting to order at 2 pm. The meeting began with introductions, as many of the newly elected members were in attendance.
  • Ben related from personal experience that user activism has the potential to have a huge impact to raise their awareness about the user science supported by synchrotrons, particularly discussions with policymakers as they are considering future budgets for physical sciences and for synchrotron facilities. Ben has developed and maintains an SSRL user activism website through his home institution:
  • There was a discussion and feedback related to the 30th Annual SSRL Users' meeting. It was suggested that advisors do more to encourage students to participate in the meeting - including the awards dinner. Several people suggested that more graduate students might be encouraged to participate in the meeting, submit posters and attend the awards dinner if the cost of the dinner could be subsidized or waived for those students submitting a poster.
  • Glenn Waychunas suggested that a session at the users' meeting might be devoted to new investigators (graduate students, postdocs).
  • It was suggested that it might be helpful to have something on the role of synchrotron radiation users in LCLS (ultrafast spectroscopy, etc.). More active user outreach would help to engage potential users early on, gauge the interest of the community, generate ideas for new experiments, solicit new proposals. Dick Lee noted the challenge of putting together a package for review by SLAC, DOE and others to aid in commissioning and initial transition to the general user phase of the project.
  • Keith Hodgson gave a update on SSRL, SPPS, and LCLS activities. User operations expected to resume with SPEAR3 in March 2004. Expansion capacity exists for 8-10 new beam lines (first 2 in final phases of design/funding - soft x-ray and hard x-ray undulators). SPPS builds on strong strong synergy between accelerator and photon sciences; experiment utilizes SLAC linac with added bunch compressor and undulator to produce 80 fsec x-ray pulses. SPPS provides the first opportunity to directly gain experience with high brightness, short pulse linac based x-ray light source - enabling new area of science and R&D directly relevant to LCLS. LCLS, world's first x-ray free electron laser entering 2nd year of PED funding. DOE Critical Decision 2a approval authorizes advance procurements ($30M ) to be made in FY2005. Construction expected to begin in FY2006 with first laser commissioning in early FY2008 and project completion by beginning of FY2009.
  • Changes related to radiation safety training and procedures were discussed. SSRL buildings and beam line areas will be monitored for several months of regular user operations with SPEAR3. During this time, all of the experimental floor will be considered a radiologic controlled area (RCA) while radiation surveys are underway. All users in the experimental area must have current GERT training (General Employee Radiation Training) and wear a dosimeter during this period. Procedures to facilitate GERT training and transfer of valid training from other DOE facilities for SSRL users are being implemented.
  • Changes to site access related to foreign visits and assignments were discussed. New DOE rules require that facilities track badged users in the DOE Foreign Access Tracking System (FACTS), and that users from sensitive and SST countries be approved by the DOE before they can visit. This will require that all users inform SSRL User Administration at least 45 days in advance of all scheduled beam time or planned visits to SSRL so that required documentation can be completed and any necessary approvals sought. Ben Bostick and Cathy Knotts reported on a meeting on this topic that they attended along with other user organization representatives and user program mangers at BNL at the end of October. Deanne Jackson Rudd updated the committee on activities of the SLAC Security Committee. Users with questions or concerns can contact these individuals.
  • Uwe Bergmann updated the group on plans for a public lecture series at SLAC. The series is being coordinated with SLUO and the SLAC Communications Office and will include several presentations by SR scientists including Herman Winick, Graham George and Jo Stohr.
  • Given the short user run anticipated in 2004 and increased demand for the beam lines available, there was a suggestion to investigate shorter shifts (<8 hours) in order accommodate more users. With the increase in brightness, is it possible to schedule users for less than they requested or even half shifts for users such as crystallography so that can get baseline information?
  • Following up on the discussion at October 2003 SSRLUOEC meeting, the committee decided to change the names of two user discipline categories to (other categories remain the same):

    • Structural Molecular Biology = Biospectroscopy
    • LCLS = Ultrafast science
  • It was suggested that the mailing list database maintained by SSRL be updated to include users' research areas so that mailings can be targeted to those users in each category. Cathy reported that there are some limitations with the current database but that this could be incorporated into an updated database which is under development (new system will also offer more user friendly web interfaces for updating mailing list information, proposals, and scheduling information).
  • The meeting adjourned at 6 pm, followed by a group dinner with members of the SSRL Proposal Review Panel.

Cathy Knotts
SSRL Liaison to SSRL Users' Organization Executive Committee

Last Updated: 21 MAY 2004
Content Owner: C. Knotts
Page Editor: Lisa Dunn