Friday, 24 July 1987 Washington, DC
DOE GIVES IN TO CONGRESS AND EXTENDS DEADLINE FOR SSC PROPOSALS.
A rider to the fiscal 1987 Supplemental
Appropriations Act, attached by Senator Pete Domenici (D-NM),
requires DOE to delete Section 220.127.116.11 from its Invitation for
Site Proposals for the SSC. What this refers to is the offer of
financial and other incentives by states that hope to win the
giant collider by throwing money at it. The notion that the SSC
might go to the highest bidder in a kind of auction got virtually
no support in Congress. So DOE rules out such offers in the
evaluation of proposals. But, instead, it suggests the states
may want to include information about financial incentives to
defray the $4.4B price of construction and the annual $370M cost
of operation in a sealed envelope that DOE promises not to open
until after the site is finally chosen. The procedure has the
ring of Hollywood's Academy Awards about it: "And now the
envelope, please." The site selection procedure also came in for
criticism by a group of 38 House members who objected to the
4-month period for preparing proposals. They originally wanted 4
more months and settled for only 1. The deadline for proposals
was extended from 3 August to 2 September. But while DOE goes
ahead assuming the SSC will be approved, Congress has yet to say
the accelerator is A-OK to launch.
. US TEAM WINS THREE BRONZE MEDALS AT INTERNATIONAL
The winners in the second year of U.S. competition
(two Tennesseans, Bryan Beatty of Knoxville and Normand Modine of
Oak Ridge, and Eli Glezer of San Diego) were among 125 who took
part in the XVIII Physics Olympiad, held July 2-13 in Jena, East
Germany, this year. Their performance matched that of
contestants from the USSR. Of the three gold medals, two went to
students from Romania, one to a youth from the Netherlands.
3. PHYSICS PhDs IN THE US REBOUNDED 10% LAST YEAR OVER 1985,
foreign nationals got more than two-thirds of the total. The
increase in physics doctorates was greater than in any of the
other sciences with the exception of computer sciences, which
jumped 28% from the previous year. The statistics are from a
study, conducted for NSF, of graduate enrollments at all 325
doctorate-granting institutions in the US. The NSF report
indicates that the number of foreign students enrolled full-time
in graduate science and engineering programs in 1985, the last
complete year available for all students, increased 8% over 1984
and that US citizens in graduate schools dropped another 1%.
Foreigners made up 26% of the total graduate science and
engineering enrollment, by contrast to 10 years ago when the
proportion of foreigners was 17%. A comparison of field choices
shows marked differences between foreign and US grad students.
Fields of choice for foreigners were civil, electrical and
mechanical engineering, in which the foreign proportion was 45%.