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Regina Caputo | USLHC | USA

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Perspective from the US

This week has been particularly exciting for those at CERN and the collaborators. We’re back to circulating beams – which was where we left off last September. I anxiously await news about collisions and soon ramping up the energy. My browser has about 10 tabs open looking at views of the ATLAS control room, the beam info, the event display, twitter 😉 … it’s exciting times, and hard to think about other work.

But this has given me some time to reflect on the past year. I arrived at CERN just after the first beam circulation. The golden week or so between the LHC working and not. There was so much excitement at CERN, scientists are just like big kids (myself included). Beams were circulating – everything was going so well. No one was really prepared for what happened. I can only imagine how things are this year. From my friends who are there, I feel cautious optimism.

After all the roller coaster that was 2008 and most of 2009, I’m back refreshing webpages every 2 seconds, but not as doe-eyed as before. Things never go as well as you hope, especially not cutting-edge machines. They’re in the process of deciding which energy to start colliding particles – the first step. We’ll soon surpass the accomplishments of last September and hopefully start a new era in particle physics and I wait with cautious optimism.

-Regina

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