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ALSNews Vol. 346 Print

Countdown to 2013 ALS User Meeting: October 7-9

user meeting logoThere is still time to register online for this year's ALS User Meeting.  With 4 keynote talks [James Murphy (DOE), Michael Eisen (UC Berkeley), James Krupnick (LBNL), and Jamie Cate (UC Berkeley)], 6 science highlights13 workshops, and 27 exhibitors, we are breaking all sorts of meeting records. View the finalized agenda and workshops, and register now!

Contact: ALS User Office

Learning from Roman Concrete

concrete thumbAnalyses of ancient concrete samples pinpointed why the best Roman concrete was superior to most modern concrete in durability, why its manufacture was less environmentally damaging, and how these improvements could be adopted in the modern world. Read more...


Contact: Paulo Monteiro, Marie Jackson

Pseudo-Single-Bunch Expands Experimental Scope

pseudo-single bunchInitial tests of a new pseudo-single-bunch (PSB) operational mode at the ALS have shown promising results--PSB would vastly expand the facility's capacity to carry out dynamics and time-of-flight experiments with a major reduction in sample damage. Read more...

Contact: David Robin
Ring Leader: Deborah Smith, User Office Senior Administrator

deborah smithALS users and staff are all familiar with the welcoming smile of Deborah Smith in the User Office as she guides users through the administrative processes to get   them ready for their beam time. Although these days much of her work life revolves around organizing the annual ALS User Meeting (which is fast approaching October 7-9), she has a lot of other responsibilities to the user community on her plate year-round. Read how Deborah and her team manage the many aspects of user "customer service" at the ALS.

Industry@ALS: Environmental Remediation Gets Fired Up with Biochar

biocharUsing ALS Beamlines 10.3.2 and 8.3.2, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is currently investigating how biochar sorbs environmental toxins and which kinds of biochar are the most effective. The possibilities for widespread use have already launched entrepreneurial commercial ventures. Read more...


Explore  Berkeley Lab and the ALS Via a New Interactive Map

lab mapBerkeley Lab can be a confusing place for first-time visitors and long-time employees alike, so Berkeley Lab's Information Technology Division and the Public Affairs Department teamed up to create a new interactive map. It's designed for anyone who wants to learn more about Berkeley Lab and navigate from place to place. The map can be viewed on computers and smart phones—take a look!

Who's in the News: Visitors and Awards
visitorsRecent visitors to the ALS  included Joachim Sauer, professor of Theoretical Chemistry at  Humboldt University in Berlin, Wang Junming, the new counselor for Science and Technology at the Chinese Consulate, and Helmut Schwarz, president of the Humboldt Foundation. Read more about these and other visitors, and see all their photos at the ALS...
Science Cafe
ALS Science Café
Friday, November 1 @ 12 noon, User Support Building, 15-253
Speakers  and topics for the next science café include Marie Jackson (Roman concrete), Greg Hura (DNA labelled with gold), and Dave Robin (Pseudo-single bunch.


ALS User Meeting—Register Now!
October 7-9, 2013; Berkeley, CA, USA

UEC Corner

Have You Ever.....

.....considered running for the Users' Executive Committee? The UEC represents the interests of all ALS users, communicating concerns and needs of the users to ALS management and to the DOE, as well as providing a means for ALS management to communicate plans and changes at the ALS to the user community. Next year will be a very interesting time to serve on the UEC, as discussions about a possible diffraction-limited source upgrade to the ALS continue to shape the future of science at the ALS.

Elections will be held for new members starting at the ALS User Meeting (October 7-9). There will be 5 members leaving the UEC at the end of this year, so we need a large slate of candidates.

We look forward to seeing all of you at the User Meeting next month!

All users are welcome to contact their UEC representatives to raise issues of concern relating to their own research, or to alert us to issues facing our whole community.

Contact: Corie Ralston
Operations Update

For the user runs from August 19 to September 16, 2013 (which included a scheduled extended shutdown and two user weeks in 2-Bunch Mode), the beam reliability [(time scheduled - time lost)/time scheduled)] was 95.6%. For this period, the mean time between failures (MTBF) was 58.3 hours, and the mean time to recovery (MTTR) was 172 minutes. On September 6, the failure of a power supply within the crowbar cabinet of the SRRF system resulted in the loss of nearly 11 hours of user beam time (during 2-Bunch Mode operations).

More detailed information on reliability is available on the ALS reliability bulletin board, which is located in the hallway between the ALS and the control room in Building 80. Questions about beam reliability should be directed to Dave Richardson ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , x4376).

Long-term and weekly operations schedules are available online. Requests for special operations use of the "scrubbing" shift should be sent to Rick Bloemhard ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , x4738) by 1:00 p.m. Friday. The ring status can be seen in real time at

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