Five years at CERN

During a dinner with Council delegates on the night of 22 December, Bernard Gregory (left) receives an album of photographs from Professor Amaldi, recording some of the major events of his five years as director-general of CERN. On the right is his successor, Professor Jentschke.

Taken from p378.

Firsts at Argonne and Batavia...

The first photograph of a neutrino interaction in pure hydrogen, recorded in the 12 foot hydrogen bubble chamber at Argonne. The sketch illustrates the analysis of the event. A neutrino enters from the bottom of the picture and interacts with a proton at the hydrogen nucleus to yield a positive pion, a proton and a muon.

Taken from pp388–389.

A cluster of people around the controls of the Batavia 200 MeV linac when it produced its first full energy beam in the early hours of 1 December. In the foreground are R Rihet, R Goodwin, E Hubbard and M Shea. (Photo NAL.)

Taken from p391.

...and a last?

A small, just about portable, radiation detector, known as the Albatros I Neutron Monitor, has been designed by the Radiation Physics section at Batavia to monitor fast neutrons, which are usually the most serious radiation hazard in personnel-occupied areas when a high-energy accelerator is operating (in certain areas high-energy muons may also be a problem, but for most areas neutrons are the most troublesome).

The meter can be read in dose rate or in occupation time per day. The total integrated neutron dose is also recorded. An audible signal sounds when the dose rate exceeds 50 mRem/hr. The unit operates either on a battery pack or on AC power. It weighs approximately 10 kg (221 lbs).

Other attractive features in the photograph are exclusive to Batavia. (Photo NAL.)

Taken from p392.

Compiler’s Note

Another year, et plus ça change ...

In 1970, just as in 1969, Hildred Blewitt was the only female pictured in CERN Courier who could unequivocally be identified as a scientist/engineer (see CERN Courier November 2013). Buried among hundreds of photos of men of all kinds were about a dozen that featured women: a couple of data aides, a few secretaries, possibly a technician, a wife or two, a pair of ladies helping out in the ground-breaking dig for the Batavia main ring, and Margaret Thatcher visiting CERN as UK secretary of state for education and science. This count excludes females embellishing commercial adverts and the young lady shown here alongside a laboratory-developed instrument. We wouldn’t get away with that kind of presentation these days! Even in the scene on the December 1970 cover (see thumbnail), there are only two people who are definitely identifiable as women in the CERN crowd that gathered to bid farewell to departing director-general Bernard Gregory.

So, how far have we come? Well, certainly more women feature in CERN Courier photos these days but what about actual CERN numbers? In 1970, 11% of the 2970 staff members were female. In 1990 the proportion had fallen to 10% out of 3140, but climbed to 21% out of 2430 by 2010.

At the last census in 2012, 20% of CERN’s 2510 staff members were female. They were at roughly half-strength pro rata in the scientific and technical sectors: 10% among research physicists, 13% of applied physicists, 11% in computing and 14% in engineering. However, in administration women were punching very successfully above their statistical weight, comprising 52% of professional administrators, 94% of administrative assistants and 54% of the clerical staff.