The University of Chicago’s Independent Student Newspaper since 1892

Chicago Maroon

The University of Chicago’s Independent Student Newspaper since 1892

Chicago Maroon

The University of Chicago’s Independent Student Newspaper since 1892

Chicago Maroon

Letter to the Editor

Fermilab

I applaud Usman Ahmed for being alert to the very recent National Research Council report on support for elementary particle physics in the U.S. (“U of C Site Vies for New Particle Accelerator”, May 9, 2006). Unfortunately, in a brief phone interview, which I cut short because I was late for a seminar, Mr. Ahmed misunderstood a few of my points. The NRC “EPP2010” panel determined that elementary particle physics is a field of great value, historically furthered by U.S. initiatives, and that the U.S. could well lose its prominence in the field owing to many years of shrinking funding.

Contrary to a statement in the article, I do not disagree with the NRC recommendations, namely that the U.S. make it a priority to host the next generation accelerator (ILC) needed by the field. I believe Mr. Ahmed misunderstood a comment I made about the urgency for the U.S. to increase its support for the ILC and become a lead player in the project…whether it is hosted here or not. Given the ability of this country to invest in large-scale science, and its historical place in the development of the science, I strongly believe the U.S. should take the lead in the truly international ILC project. Indeed, the original concept for the ILC was first developed in this country in the 1980s.

I also point out that Fermilab is not formally affiliated with the University and is therefore not a “U of C site” (but the proximity to U of C is certainly of great benefit to the University).

Mark Oreglia

Professor of Physics

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