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Peter Steinberg | USLHC | USA

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On the Volga

For all the non-blogging I’ve been doing, I can’t say that I haven’t been giving most of my life to the upcoming LHC run. The main distraction was a recent trip to an ATLAS workshop in Dubna, Russia, on the Volga River, next to a huge reservoir (which someone there called the “Moscow Sea”). While I’ve heard of Dubna for years, as I’ve had collaborators on previous experiments hailing from there, I had never been there, much less to Russia in general. Can’t say that anymore.

The workshop (“Heavy Ion Physics with the ATLAS Detector”) was early last week, and took place in a conference center on Veksler Street, well outside the lab itself. It turns out that just as it’s getting harder and harder to get our non-US colleagues into our national labs, it’s getting equally as laborious to get us into foreign labs. So while I didn’t get to see their facilities, we did hear a nice talk about their planned new low energy heavy ion collider facility (NICA). And the workshop participants (half local, half international) presented a nice set of talks both on ATLAS capabilities for heavy ion physics, but also on Russian involvement the other heavy ion efforts at the LHC in CMS & ALICE. My talk, on bulk observables at RHIC, can be found here — for your enjoyment.

Finally, when the workshop was over we took a half day trip to Sergiyev Posad, home of the Troitse-Sergiyeva Lavra monatery — the spiritual center of the Russian Orthodox Church. Fascinating — especially the private tour of their collection of icons.

And if you’re really curious, you can check out my photos of the Dubna & Sergei Posad parts of my journey on my flickr page. I also spent a day in Moscow on either end, and that was amazing as well — more on that on my personal page.

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