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BaBar/PEP-II Liaison Shift Training


The Liaison is a very important element of the BaBar/PEP-II shift team. The Liaison serves as a diplomat and a negotiator as well as another eye watching over the BaBar elephant as data piles onto disk. The Liaison must bring their own personal expertise to the shift as well as familiarity with the following items. Shift training should bring people up to speed on these issues:

  • EPICS: the online detector control system
  • Machine backgrounds
  • Traditional machine vs detector "rivalry"
  • MCC (PEP Control Room) etiquette
  • Common sense (You must bring most of this!)

New liaison shifters are required to have IR-2 experience. Preferably, your first block of Liaison shifts will start on a Monday day shift. (Currently there is no Liaison on owl shift.) The following is a brief outline of liaison training requirements.

  • Gain experience in IR-2, preferably as Pilot.
  • Attend a Liaison Training Seminar, or read the material. (last updated Nov. 2001)
  • Read the first half of the Liaison Shift Manual, through the SVTRAD section.
  • Look through the remainder of the Liaison Shift Manual, so you know what is covered.
  • Attend a hands-on training session with the Liaison Coordinator.
  • Sit in on at least two Liaison shifts, at least a half shift each.
If you are traveling to SLAC, you MUST allow sufficient training time before your first shift. More detail is provided below.

Training Requirements

Liaison shift-takers MUST meet the following requirements in order to be adequately prepared for going solo on Liaison shift. Most of this information is covered in the Liaison Shift Manual. The Liaison Coordinators make a point of visiting a Liaison on shift at least once per week, to answer questions and to obtain feedback on the shift conditions.

  • IR-2 experience is required for new liaison shifters. Having taken Pilot shifts definitely counts as such; having taken one or more blocks of DQM (Navigator) shifts in IR-2 counts as well - provided you have been paying attention to what the Pilot does. Having spent several weeks doing something else may also count, provided you pay attention to the Pilot's duties, and pick up the relevant experience with EPICS and IR-2 operations. It is best if you have IR-2 experience before your Liaison training, but you really must have this experience before embarking on your liaison shifts.
  • Attend a Liaison Training Seminar (or read the material if there is no seminar).
    • The Liaison Coordinator will schedule a seminar when justified by the number of trainees and their experience. The preferred time is Monday or early Tuesday. (You are advised to preview the training material.) Recently the number of new Liaison shifters has been relatively small, we do not have regularly scheduled training seminars.
    • When there is no training seminar, you are asked to read the training material as an introduction to the scope of the liaison task, and this will be reviewed during the hands-on training session.
    • The Liaison Training Seminar material has been updated 07 Nov 2001.
      There are only minor problems in this version, available in several forms:
  • Read the Liaison Shift Manual. You should read the first half of this carefully; at least through the information about the SVTRAD system. You can scan the rest, to become aware of what you can find there. Much of this detail will become more clear when you have your hands-on training session. The manual is intended to be read in a web browser because some of the illustrative links will not print, and because it changes frequently. We are continually updating the manual, and attempting to make it a more useful tool. On shift, you can search the web manual for the specific information you need.
  • Attend a hands-on training session with the Liaison Coordinator. If you have never taken a liaison shift before, or feel that your training is not up to date, you must let the Liaison Coordinator know in advance that you would like to arrange a training session. Please e-mail the Liaison Coordinator, and we will try to schedule a convenient time. This will give hands-on experience with EPICS, backgrounds, SVT diode calibration, and all that good stuff. For specific concerns about the training session, contact the Liaison Coordinator.
  • In advance of your first scheduled shifts:
    • Sit in on AT LEAST TWO LIAISON SHIFTS, at least half of each, and
    • Sit in on at least one MCC shift-change meeting.
      • This will provide additional hands-on experience, familiarize you with the type of interactions between the Liaison and the PEP-II operators, and get you accustomed to working in the MCC main control room.
      • You can sign in on the e-log for shift credit if you stay for 50% of the shift.
  • Sign up for BaBar/PEP-II Liaison HyperNews!!. Before you start a block of Liaison shifts, review the past few months of postings.
    Sign up for BaBar Detector Operations HyperNews!!. These are the minutes of the daily IR-2 BaBar operations meeting. Read this daily before and during your shift block, so you are aware of the current concerns in IR-2.
  • It goes without saying that documentation is your friend. Read it! Use it!

Training Results/Goals

  • Experience using EPICS.
    • You must know how to left-click and right-click-and-drag-down-a-menu in EPICS.
    • You should feel comfortable surfing the seemingly endless ocean of panels that exist in BaBar EPICS: know where the BaBar Main --> BKG panel is, where the SVT --> Background summary panel is, and where are all other panels you see mentioned in the liaison manual or used by other liaison and IR-2 shifters.
    • You should know how to read and change the scale on a StripTool stripchart. The ability to add a new EPICS channel to a stripchart is a plus.
  • Sympathy and respect for the accelerator.
    • The B-factory is a team effort, and BaBar only receives colliding beams with the brilliant and often heroic efforts of the MCC crew.
    • If you back-stab them by complaining about backgrounds without having actually spoken to them, you'll find their complaints about BaBar's "useless and unphysical" background signals and "downtime caused by BaBar" growing exponentially...
    • They work at least as hard as we do, and in fact it is their job.
  • Read through the first few sections of the Liaison Shift Manual in detail, either in print or online, and skim through the second half's titles and links.
    • This is ESSENTIAL, since a few people have put literally hundreds of hours into preparing this document so that you don't have to wake them up with questions about where the bathrooms are...(just kidding).
    • But seriously -- there is a plethora of information in the shift manual, and being aware of WHAT can be found in the manual is more important than memorizing the whole document.
  • For particular questions and concerns, please feel free to address the Liaison Coordinator by e-mail.
    Starting about January 28, 2003, and until May 31, 2003, write to Dick Kofler.
    Previous Liaison Coordinators:
  • A good condensed understanding about machine backgrounds from our first year is excerpted below from BAD Note #45 (December 2000). There is some new understanding of a significant portion of DIRC backgrounds being directly caused by radiative bhabha scattering, proportional to luminosity.
  • For additional material on BaBar backgrounds, see the references under further useful links in the Liaison Shift Manual. (ICHEP 2000 paper, BaBar NIM paper, PEP-II NIM paper draft, High Lumi Background Task Force report)

This page was created by TIMeyer and is currently maintained by Stan Hertzbach. It was Last modified: Mon Jan 13 17:22:57 PST 2003 .