PEP-II Approved for Restart
By Matthew Early Wright
The B Factory has been given permission by the Restart
Validation Team (RVT) to resume operations after nearly five months of
downtime. During this period, the staff has worked hard to ensure that
the restart can proceed safely and efficiently.
Shown left to
right: Michael Stanek, Sonya Hoobler, Tom Sommer, and Kathleen
Donnelly (all AD) in the Control Room. The group has been hard
at work over the last month preparing for the restart of PEP-II
and the Linac.
The B Factory staff has updated many key safety
protocols and made several necessary hardware upgrades, according to
John Seeman, Head of the Accelerator Department. “Each individual, with
their supervisor, has re-examined the safety issues of their workplace,”
Seeman said. “Many maintenance and construction procedures have been
clarified or added to improve the safe operation of the linac, PEP-II
For example, the protocol for replacing
worn klystrons has been updated to allow for enhanced safety. Of the
nearly 245 klystrons installed in the linac, two to three per month
require replacement, making this a relatively routine procedure.
The staff also updated department-level training procedures to grant
workers clearance into the linac tunnels. The new training focuses
extensively on how to safely enter the tunnels, what safety gear is
required and how to conduct various routine maintenance operations.
In all, the RVT identified seven such protocols that required updating.
Also, an electrical walkthrough in February identified 44 electrical
items that needed fixing or replacing. In the last month, the B Factory
staff has been working through this list making the necessary changes.
Tailoring procedures to make them both safe and practical has been the
key challenge during this effort, Seeman said. “We can sit in our office
and make procedures, but when we get in the tunnel, there are additional
constraints,” he added. “We have to be totally safe, but we also have to
allow people in the field to continue their work.”
The RVT granted final approval for the restart, with concurrence from
the SLAC Director and the DOE site office, on Thursday, March 24 at
noon. Since then, the team has been turning on the klystrons and other
hardware. After so much downtime, some of the equipment required tuning
or minor repairs. Maintenance crews have been working hard to keep up
with these repairs, Seeman said.
essentially going according to plan,” Seeman added. “Everyone is working
hard, and we are all looking forward to having full beams and generating
collisions for BABAR.”
For more information, see: