CERN Accelerating science




Our dear boson – and so what?

A long-sought particle finally found. On Wednesday 4 July, enthusiasm spread from CERN to the worldwide media. But a question legitimately arises: why is this particle attracting so much interest? In other words, how is it different from all the others? (And, by the way, what is a boson?). >>

Something far, far bigger than ourselves

Now the dust has settled, we can take stock of the momentous events of 4 July. It is not every day that a new fundamental particle is discovered, certainly not one that could open new avenues to exploring the fundamental nature of our Universe. The last fundamental particles to be discovered at CERN, the W and Z bosons, were announced in 1983 and led to the Nobel Prize being awarded to Carlo Rubbia and Simon van der Meer the following year. This time, recognition has come in a more immediate form: though blanket global media coverage. The world shared our excitement. >>

LHC Report: a Roman potpourri

The last couple of weeks of operation have been a mixed bag, with time dedicated to TOTEM and ALFA, a floating machine development period and luminosity calibration runs. These special running periods were interleaved with some standard proton running where we’ve struggled a little to recover previous highs. The LHC has now returned to more routine operation. >>

A proposal: LEIR to serve biomedicine

LEIR is the CERN facility that produces high-density ion beams for the LHC and for the SPS fixed target experiments. Since its operational schedule is not fully booked, LEIR could, in principle, be exploited even further. A brainstorming meeting recently took place at CERN to evaluate the possibility of modifying LEIR to serve the biomedical community. Discussions are in progress. >>

Retirement postponed!

As the LHC celebrates a highly successful year so far, the world accelerator community is already looking ahead to the next collider. It has appointed a CERN past master of accelerator building to coordinate the development of future linear collider efforts. >>

Socially responsible investments

In addition to well-established working principles based on conservative and capital preservation oriented investments that ensure it a sustainable future, the CERN Pension Fund recently introduced a new criterion for selecting the numerous opportunities that the market offers: philanthropy. Its first initiative, which also involves the Staff Association’s Long-Term Collection, will help support two orphanages in China. >>

Of Mind and (sub-atomic) Matter

There are medics in the Main Building: neuroscientists, neurosurgeons and psychiatrists to name but a few. In short, more doctors than most of us have ever seen outside of a university or a hospital. Not a typical scene for a laboratory focusing on physics rather than physiology, but one that became common during the two-day European Brain Council Meeting held at CERN this June. >>

The Higgs boson: treated like a rock star

On 4 July, excited physicists and journalists crowded the CERN site, while around the world thousands tuned in to the webcast, all wanting news of the elusive Higgs boson. News of the Higgs-like boson spread instantaneously via live blogging, news feeds, Twitter, Facebook and other channels. The global media coverage opened doors for CERN to reach new audiences, some of which were quite unexpected… >>

The Higgs seminar, by those who were there

If the Higgs boson was treated like a rock star by the international media, take a moment to imagine the ambiance that reigned at CERN - home to the beast... When Rolf Heuer, CERN Director-General, appeared in the first-floor corridor of the Main Building, at 7.15 a.m. on Wednesday 4 July, he was met with applause from a horde of Cernois. In that moment, there was no doubt: the day would be exceptional. And it was. For us at CERN more than any other. The proof? Hear it straight from the horse's mouth... >>

New ALPHA-2 magnet

On 21 June, members of the ALPHA collaboration celebrated the handover of the first solenoid designed for the ALPHA-2 experiment. The magnet has since been successfully installed and is working well. >>

Les Horribles Cernettes - "Goodbye CERN" concert

The Cernettes will be giving their farewell concert at the CERN Hadronic Festival, this Saturday 21 July as of 7 p.m., in Restaurant 3 (CERN Prévessin site). This final performance draws to a close the 20-year career of CERN’s legendary band. >>

No app for that? Make it yourself!

Are you passionate about science? Do you like communicating that passion to the general public? Then come along to the very first CERN Summer Student Webfest kicking off on Friday 3 August! The Webfest is a grassroots initiative by the summer students, seeking to spark new ideas that could innovate the future of web-based education about CERN, the LHC and particle physics. >>

Sometimes age is just a detail

Shree Bose, the young woman who won the 2011 Google Science Fair competition, visited CERN at the end of June. She had the chance to be here for the Higgs update seminar and, as she told the Bulletin, was "completely blown away”. >>

CERN welcomes Intel Science Fair winners

This June, CERN welcomed twelve gifted young scientists aged 15-18 for a week-long visit of the Laboratory. These talented students were the winners of a special award co-funded by CERN and Intel, given yearly at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). >>

Make-A-Wish recipient visits CERN

Katie Kemp, an 18-year-old from Seattle, wants to know how the Universe operates. On 22 June, she started working on the answer with help from CERN and Make-A-Wish Switzerland, a foundation that grants wishes to children and young adults in Switzerland living with life-threatening conditions. >>

“Bike to work”, a successful motto

In June 2012, Switzerland launched a “Bike to work” campaign in which several tens of thousands took part. CERN personnel also took up the challenge. >>

LHC 2012 proton run extended by seven weeks

An important piece of news that almost got lost in the excitement of the Higgs update seminar on 4 July is that the 2012 LHC proton run is to be extended. >>

Music, videos and the risk for CERN

Do you like listening to music while you work? What about watching videos during your leisure time? Sure this is fun. Having your colleagues participate in this is even more fun. However, this fun is usually not free. There are artists and the music and film companies who earn their living from music and videos. >>

Ombuds’ corner: Relationship to authority

In this series, the Bulletin aims to explain the role of the Ombuds at CERN by presenting practical examples of misunderstandings that could have been resolved by the Ombuds if he had been contacted earlier. Please note that, in all the situations we present, the names are fictitious and used only to improve clarity. >>

News from the Library: Stay connected and informed, try Mendeley!

Mendeley is a free bibliographic reference manager and academic social network. This online platform enables researchers to discover scientific publications and to collaborate with others online. >>

Spring report of the Pension Fund

In this column, the Chairman of the Pension Fund Governing Board (PFGB) will regularly present the latest main decisions, initiatives and accomplishments of the Governing Board to the members and beneficiaries of the Fund. >>

Hannes Schwarzbauer (1950 - 2012)

Hannes came to CERN in October 1973 to take up a post with the Computer Operations Group in DD Division, leaving Stuttgart where he had been working up until then. >>

Claude Dangoisse (1956 - 2012)

We deeply regret to announce the death of Mr Claude Dangoisse on 1 July 2012. >>

Official News

Calendar for the forthcoming indefinite contract review procedure  
Visas for Switzerland and France - Time needed to process applications  
Annual Information Meeting of the Pension Fund (General Meeting)  

Training and Development

Safety Training: places available in July / August 2012  
Summer French courses for BEGINNERS (9 July to 23 August)  
Summer Oral Expression English course  


CERN's live webcasts  


New arrivals  
Collide@CERN: exclusive open rehearsal of Gilles Jobin's last piece  

Staff Association

An unsatisfactory contract policy