Accelerator Radiation Safety Newsletter



An Official Publication of the

Health Physics Society's Accelerator Section

Circulation: 476

Second Quarter 2011 /
Volume 20, Number 2



The President's Message
Mike Grissom

In this second quarter 2011 issue of the newsletter, we have Linnea Wahl’s report on the Founders Award, the text of Ralph Thomas’ speech from the 2011 HPS Awards Banquet on June 28th, Scott Schwahn on the Section’s nominations process, Lorraine Day’s items on the upcoming IPAC 12 meeting and CAMD update, as well as a US Particle Accelerator School announcement.


Since this is my last article as the Section’s President, I will be discussing a fairly wide-ranging set of topics regarding developments at the 2011 HPS Annual Meeting, progress on the 2013 HPS Mid-Year Meeting, and some final thoughts.

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The Past President's Message
Linnea Wahl

With great pleasure I announce that Ralph Thomas was awarded the 2011 Health Physics Society's Founders Award on June 28, 2011, in West Palm Beach, Florida. Dr. Thomas's nomination was endorsed by the HPS Accelerator Section, two California chapters, and dozens of prominent accelerator health physicists and researchers from around the world.


Ralph Thomas is most deserving of the HPS Founders Award, one of the greatest honors the society can bestow. His service to the HPS Accelerator Section alone is worthy of this honor. He was a founding member of the section, serving as its second president after no less a luminary as H. Wade Patterson. His publications are numerous and varied, and they include the classic text, Accelerator Health Physics, written with H. Wade Patterson. Most recently he chaired the committee that produced NCRP Report 144, Radiation Protection for Particle Accelerator Facilities.


I could go on—Ralph Thomas has made so many contributions to the field of accelerator health physics. The Accelerator Section is indeed fortunate to count Ralph as one of our members and founders. Congratulations to Dr. Thomas on receiving the 2011 HPS Founders Award and thanks for all he has done for the Accelerator Section and the professional accelerator health physics.


In this issue

From the Officers
From the Correspondents
Other News

How to Subscribe
Newsletter Archives

Also of interest

Accelerator Section Website
HPS Website
Reflections on the 2008

Professional Development School
Purchase 2008 School Textbook


Mike Grissom, Stanford Linear Accelerator, Retired

Rich Brey, Idaho State University

Past President:
Linnea Wahl, Berkeley National Lab

Mike Sandvig, Idaho National Lab

Steve Frey, SLAC National Accelerator Lab, retired

Newsletter Editor:
Keith Heinzelman, Berkeley National Lab

Sam Baker, Argonne National Lab


Eric Burgett, Idaho State University

Lorraine Marceau-Day, Louisiana State University

Elsa Nimmo, University of California, Berkeley

Reg Ronningen, Michigan State University

Jack Topper, Livermore National Lab


Founders Award Acceptance Speech (Ralph Thomas says “Thank You”)

Mr. President, Honoured Guests, friends and colleagues. My purpose tonight is, simply, to say “Thank-you!”

Earlier, in a brief chat with our president Ed Maher I reached the conclusion that had he been a director of a symphony orchestra he would have had a preference for music annotated “vivace”. So, to the best of my ability here goes!

First, please allow me to introduce two very special guests who have travelled from the San Francisco Bay Area to “be with their Dad” tonight: my younger daughter Susie Homer and her husband Dave.

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IPAC12 in New Orleans May 20-25, 2012
Lorraine Marceau-Day

The European, Asian and American Particle Accelerator Conferences have merged into the International Particle Accelerator Conference.   The last “European” Conference will be held in San Sebastian next September.  Thereafter, all the conferences will be under IPAC.  The conference will rotate from the Americas to Europe and Asia.   IPAC12 will be held in New Orleans Louisiana nest May 20-25 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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From the Nominations Committee Chair
Scott Schwahn

Dear Colleagues,

As you may have noticed on the recent Accelerator Section ballot, there was only one nomination per executive officer position. It has been pointed out that the ballot had the potential to be "perceived as inner circle machinations." This is a valid criticism.

I wanted to let you all know that we on the Nominations Committee put forth considerable effort to fill the ballot for officers this year. We solicited for nominations on two separate occasions, and made many additional phone calls in an attempt to get two nominees per position. All nominees were contacted; with the exception of those on the ballot, all but two turned down opportunities to serve in leadership positions.

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USPAS at University of Texas, Austin January 16 – 27, 2012

The U.S. Particle Accelerator School is offering a program of graduate-level credit courses sponsored by the University of Texas at Austin from January 16-27, 2012.  One undergraduate-level course and 11 graduate-level courses will be offered.  Two courses you may find particularly interesting are "Radiation Physics, Regulation and Management" taught by Don Cossairt and Diane Reitzner of Fermilab from January 16-20.  Offered from January 23-27 is "Controlling Risks:  Safety Systems" taught by Ken Barat and Patrick Bong of Lawrence Berkeley Lab.  Both courses will carry Continuing Education credits from the American Academy of Health Physics.

Please visit our website for full course descriptions and an electronic application form.  For further information please contact the USPAS at phone 630-840-3896 or email



News from CAMD

As everyone is gearing up for the upcoming annual meeting in West Palm Beach, we have all been reviewing our latest results.  Here, at CAMD, we are no different.  At the moment we are evaluating more than 20 years of environmental monitoring for our facility.  This is quite a daunting task, especially, as the data is scattered in multiple places.

 At this time, CAMD remains in a seesaw pattern.  We have received funding for a new 7.5 T multi-pole wiggler.  This means moving several beamlines and our shield wall.  This insertion device will be installed late in 2012.  Some of the new designs of the beamlines also present some interesting health physics challenges.  The new tomography beamline will be installed with a Laue Monochromator.  Our experience with such devices indicates that they are major scattering devices.  Since the ring circumference, is a modest 55 meters, the introduction of multiple beamlines within a relatively small space means that there is no one size fits all design for our radiation hutches, whether they be primary optical enclosures or secondary hutches.  There is also a substantial increase in the power of the new insertion device compared with the existing insertion device (Figure 1).  Due to the large scope of the work, we anticipate the shutdown to last several months [at least with respect to achieving usable beam].  This is due, in part, to the current budgetary constraints at the facility wherein we can only afford to operate 14 hours per day on a 8/14 day schedule.  One day is left for studies and another within this 2 week period for maintenance.  Maintenance also includes any special requirements such as interlock testing [mandated quarterly].  This truncated schedule will also contribute to the extended shutdown period as vacuum conditioning will take about 4 months to achieve normal user beam.  Of course, then as beam lifetime is shortened due to the poor vacuum, additional injection periods will be required, which of course, will result in additional radiation.  Another significant project that is planned [though currently, unfunded] is the upgrade of the Linac from 200 MeV to 300 MeV.  This would significantly decrease the size of the beam during injection and also permit longer lifetimes.  There are significant health physics issues here. 

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