Pakistan Contribution in CERN


On Tuesday 21 July 1998, Director General Chris Llewellyn Smith unveiled the sign naming the Route Abdus Salam on the Meyrin site.Formerly the southern portion of the Route Pauli, the road passes near the site of the Gargamelle bubble chamber which discovered neutral currents at the PS in 1973. This, CERN’s first major physics discovery, provided the first experimental confirmation of the electroweak unification of which Salam (Pakistan only Nobel Laureate) was a major architect.[1]

The informal scientific co-operation between CERN and Pakistan dates back to the 1960s, through Dr. Abdus Salam. Some theoretical physicists from Pakistan had the opportunity to work at CERN and in 1980s, some of the experimental physicists from Pakistan, specializing in the technique of Solid State Nuclear Track Detectors (SSNTD), also benefited from CERN by exposing the stacks in the beam at the Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS).
In 1997, PAEC signed an agreement for an in-kind contribution worth one million Swiss francs for the construction of eight magnet supports for the CMS detector. The signing of the agreement was followed by the visit of Llewellyn Smith to Pakistan in 1998. The agreement provided an entry point for Pakistani scientists and engineers into the CMS collaboration.[2]. These equipments engineered in Pakistan are also mentioned in this interview.

In 2000, CERN’s new director-general, Luciano Maiani, visited Pakistan, and during this visit another agreement was signed, which doubled the Pakistani contribution from one to two million Swiss francs. This new agreement covered the construction of the resistive plate chambers required for the CMS muon system
Recently, a protocol has been signed enhancing Pakistan’s total contribution to the LHC programme to $10 million.
National Centre of Physics (NCP) of Pakistan is involved in a number of LHC-related activities such as detector construction, detector simulation, physics analysis and Grid computing. Several other Pakistani institutes are also collaborating with CERN indirectly through the NCP. The activities of these institutes cover areas such as software development, manufacturing of mechanical equipment, alignment of the CMS tracker using lasers, and the testing of electronic equipment. [2]

Above Excerpts taken from article by Dr Ishfaq Ahmed http://cerncourier.com/cws/article/cern/28934

References:[1] http://bullarchive.web.cern.ch/bullarchive/9831/art2/Text_E.html
[2] http://cerncourier.com/cws/article/cern/28934

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LHC Successful switch on

Scientists have hailed a successful switch-on for an enormous experiment which will recreate the conditions a few moments after the Big Bang.

They have now fired two beams of particles called protons around the 27km-long tunnel which houses the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).

The £5bn machine on the Swiss-French border is designed to smash protons together with cataclysmic force.

Scientists hope it will shed light on fundamental questions in physics.

The first – clockwise – beam completed its first circuit of the underground tunnel at just before 0930 BST. The second – anti-clockwise – beam successfully circled the ring after 1400 BST.

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | ‘Big Bang’ experiment starts well.

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LHC and Google Homepage

Hmmm guys at google are really fast and they never miss an event of international importance, here is how google page looks today.

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LHC First Beam (Big Bang Day) Today

Scientist around the world are excited and eager today as the big moment is nearing ,more than 20 years of wait is about to end and CERN is finally flipping the switch on the billion dollar Large Hadron Collider (LHC) dubbed as the most advance and complex machine ever built in the history of mankind. The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is a gigantic scientific instrument near Geneva, where it spans the border between Switzerland and France about 100 m underground. It is a particle accelerator used by physicists to study the smallest known particles – the fundamental building blocks of all things. Two beams of subatomic particles called ‘hadrons’ -either protons or lead ions will travel in 27 kilometre tunnel in the opposite directions at the speed of light (almost) to collide (For today’s experiment, the beam is only a single beam, so there will be no collisions).
When the LHC will start operating it will produce roughly 15 petabytes (15 million gigabytes) of data annually – enough to fill more than 1.7 million dual-layer DVDs a year. Enormous computing power and storage is required and “LHC Grid,” a global network of 60,000 computers will provide this required computing capability.The data are sent via high-speed lines to 11 top research institutions in Europe, North America and Asia, and from there to a wider network of some 150 research facilities around the world where they can be scrutinized by thousands of researchers.

Well if Physicist could not find any god particle in CERN 🙂 one thing is for sure, Computer Scientists would cherish these experiments some day which pushed distributed computing and networking technologies to a new front.

For live webcast of the event visit http://webcast.cern.ch/

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The Last Lecture

“Brick walls are there for a reason they let us prove how badly we want things” said Professor Randy Pauche in his famous lecture “The Last Lecture” (over 6.5 Million youtube dowloads at the time of this post).Randy sadly died on 25 July 2008 but his brief life left an enduring legacy.

Here are some extracts from the lecture..
– Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted
–Be good at something, it makes you valuable
–Don’t complain,just work harder
–Get feedback, and listen to it
–Brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough
–Have something to bring to the table
– Look for the best in everybody
–All you have to do is ask. Don’t be afraid to appear ignorant.
–A bad apology is worse than no apology
–Earnest is better than hip
–Dream big

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Around The Corner

Around the corner I have a friend,
In this great city that has no end,
Yet the days go by and weeks rush on,
And before I know it, a year is gone.

And I never see my old friends face,
For life is a swift and terrible race,
He knows I like him just as well,
As in the days when I rang his bell.

And he rang mine but we were younger then,
And now we are busy, tired men.
Tired of playing a foolish game,
Tired of trying to make a name.

“Tomorrow” I say! “I will call on Jim
Just to show that I’m thinking of him”,
But tomorrow comes and tomorrow goes,
And distance between us grows and grows.

Around the corner, yet miles away,
“Here’s a telegram sir,” “Jim died today.”
And that’s what we get and deserve in the end.
Around the corner, a vanished friend.

By Charles Hanson Towne (1877-1949)

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Technology Review: Spare Some Bandwidth?


Pakistani scientists have a way to boost download speeds:

Internet access is growing steadily in developing nations, but limited infrastructure means that at times connections can still be painfully slow. A major bottleneck for these countries is the need to force a lot of traffic through international links, which typically have relatively low bandwidth.

Now computer scientists in Pakistan are building a system to boost download speeds in the developing world by letting people effectively share their bandwidth. Software chops up popular pages and media files, allowing users to grab them from each other, building a grassroots Internet cache.

In developed countries, Internet service providers (ISPs) create Web caches–machines that copy and store content locally–to boost their customers’ browsing speeds. When a user wants to view a popular website, the information can be pulled from the cache instead of from the computer hosting the website, which may be on the other side of the planet and busy with requests. Similar services are offered by content distribution companies such as Akamai, based in Cambridge, MA. High-traffic sites pay Akamai to host copies of their content in multiple locations, and users are automatically served up a copy of the site from the cache closest to them.

In countries like Pakistan, Internet connections are generally slow and expensive, and few ISPs offer effective caching services, limiting access to information–one reason why the United Nations has made improving Internet connectivity worldwide one of its Millennium Development Goals. None of Pakistan’s small ISPs cache much data, and traffic is often routed through key Internet infrastructure in other nations.

“In Pakistan, almost all the traffic leaves the country,” says Umar Saif, a computer scientist at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). That’s the case even when a Pakistani user is browsing websites hosted in his or her own country. “The packets can get routed all the way through New York and then back to Pakistan,” Saif says.

So Saif’s team at LUMS is developing DonateBandwidth, a system inspired by the BitTorrent peer-to-peer protocol that is popular for trading large music, film, and program files. With BitTorrent, people’s computers swap small pieces of a file during download, reducing the strain placed on the original source.

More On ..  Technology Review: Spare Some Bandwidth?

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