Case Western Reserve Regains Lead in International Particles Race

Dan Akerib

Case Western Reserve University physicists and others from the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search experiment announced they have regained the lead in the worldwide race to find the particles that make up dark matter. The CDMS experiment, located a half-mile underground in a Minnesota mine, again sets the world's best constraints on the properties of dark matter candidates.

Weakly Interacting Massive Particles, or WIMPs, are hypothetical particles that can be thought of as the glue that keeps all the matter in the universe together through their gravitational forces.

Researchers from the university include Daniel Akerib, professor and chair of the physics department, along with research associate professor Michael Dragowsky and doctoral students Cathy Bailey and Raul Hennings-Yeomans, whose graduate work is related to the dark matter search. Read more.

Case Physicists Compete, Collaborate with Each Other in Search for Dark Matter

Shutt (second from right) and his research team with their dark matter detector

A race is on in Case Western Reserve University's physics department and around the world to be the first research group to capture signals from WIMPs (weakly interactive massive particles) -- the substance that comprises dark matter.

Experts in the field suspect whoever tracks and verifies WIMP signals first will be the leading contender for a Nobel Prize in physics. Two of the top competitors currently work just down the hall from each other in the physics department: Thomas Shutt and Daniel Akerib.

"It is exciting to have key players from the two most powerful dark matter detection searches in the world here in our department," said Lawrence M. Krauss, the Ambrose Swasey Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Case Western Reserve. "If dark matter particles are directly detected one day, it is very likely to be with one of these experiments, and we will be proud of the remarkable efforts of both groups even as we bask in the realization that either way, the Case Western Reserve physics department has taken the lead in this most important endeavor." Read more.

Campus News


The Spartan Cheerleaders will host their Third Annual Little Spartans Cheer Clinic for K-8 boys and girls March 1. For $10, children can learn cheers and dance steps from the squad; $20 includes the clinic, a T-shirt and the opportunity to perform during halftime at the men's basketball noon game. For information or to register, send e-mail to Lauren Flaherty.

On April 3, Kelvin Smith Library (KSL), in partnership with the university's biology department, will host GIS Technology: Sustaining the Future & Understanding the Past. The theme for this year's biennial symposium is "GIS - Global Public Health," with emphasis on using GIS technology to predict and guard against pandemics and infectious diseases. Members of the campus community who have used GIS in any health -- or environmental -- related study are invited to present a poster or brief demonstration at the symposium. Contact Ann Vander Schrier via e-mail or at 368-8689 for details or an application. Application deadline is March 3.

For Faculty and Staff

The Office of Faculty Diversity continues its workshop series for faculty -- Money Management Educators -- with the session "Smooth Transitions" from 12:30 to 2 p.m., February 29 in Clapp Hall, Room 108. The discussion is designed for those dealing with life changes such as switching jobs and impending retirement. The workshop will touch upon the accumulation and conservation phases of life and will provide some insight into the changes necessary to succeed during this period. For questions, contact Amanda Shaffer at 368-8874 or send e-mail to the Faculty Diversity Office.

For Students


Students are invited to come out to "Battle of the Bands" beginning at 9 p.m., February 27 at the Spot. The musical showcase is an opportunity for students to vote for the opening band that will perform at Springfest.

The Career Center invites undergraduate students of all majors and class standings to apply for a Career Peer position. Career Peers are advisers who educate students about employment opportunities and services. Career Peers work 8-10 hours per week assisting students with accessing resources, planning and presenting Career Center programs and promoting the center via student outreach. They also advise Career Center staff about student needs and expectations. Learn more.


V-Day Case Western Reserve University 2008 is sponsoring the annual benefit production of Eve Ensler's "The Vagina Monologues" at 8 p.m. on February 29 and March 1 in Amasa Stone Chapel. Tickets can be purchased in advance for $3 in Nord Hall or Thwing Center, or $5 at the door. Proceeds benefit the YWCA of Greater Cleveland's Domestic Violence Outreach Program. For information, send e-mail to Samantha Ballinger. Co-sponsored by the Flora Stone Mather Center for Women.

Scenarios USA, Greater Cleveland Region, a nonprofit organization that uses writing and filmmaking to foster youth leadership, advocacy and self-expression in underserved teens, will be coming to the university from 3:45-6:15 p.m., February 27 at the School of Medicine, Room E301. Audience members will have an opportunity to learn more about the organization, how it reviews and selects student submissions and the filmmaking process. At least one example of an "end product" will be shown. Light refreshments will be provided. For information, contact Laura Santurri via e-mail or at 368-3128.

Refer to the Web event calendar for a list of events and activities on campus and in the community today and in the days ahead.

February 25, 2008

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Case in the News

Issues: The economy -- Clinton, Obama sound alike

The Plain Dealer, February 22, 2008
A close look at the two Democrats' economic proposals turns up more similarities than differences. Susan Helper, an economics professor at Case Western Reserve University, offers insight about which presidential candidate's plan might be best for struggling Ohioans.

Filing IRS application for extension doesn't get you off hook

The Plain Dealer, February 23, 2008
Taxpayers can buy some time by filing Form 4868 -- an application for extension -- by April 16. However, Leon Blazey, senior lecturer in accounting at Case Western Reserve University's Weatherhead School of Management, says taxpayers need to be aware of the penalties.

Doctor urges students to keep college in their sight

The Chronicle-Telegram, February 23, 2008
Andre Mickel, director of Case Western Reserve University's post-doctorate endodontic residency program at the School of Dental Medicine, follows Nike's mantra of "Just do it" when he speaks to children. Mickel, who in 1996 became the first black man and the youngest director of an endodontic residency program in the country, recently spoke to children as part of a Black History Month program.

Was Cutts jury consistent?

The Canton Repository, February 23, 2008 (subscription required)
Lewis Katz, who teaches criminal law and criminal procedure at Case Western Reserve University, comments on the sentence handed down in the Bobby Cutts Jr. trial.

Higher Ed News

Ivory tower looks to young donors

USA TODAY, February 25, 2008
Today's college graduates are increasingly finding out the relationship between university and student doesn't end with a sheepskin. Schools are spending more energy pursuing donations from recent graduates.

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