On April 24, 2003, LLE sponsored a morning-long program entitled Kids@Work for the national “Bring Your Children to Work Day.” Forty-one children, ages 8 to 15, were treated to demonstrations, tours of laboratory facilities, and, of course, pizza! Dr. Robert McCrory, Director of LLE, opened the program by welcoming the children and describing some of the important work performed at LLE. He emphasized that LLE plays a critical role in national security and has a long-term mission based on the development of fusion energy.
Following the introduction, Sam Morse gave the children an interactive demonstration of how a laser works, using simple analogies to describe the concepts of the excited and ground states of neodymium (everybody got to be a light particle) as well as coherent waves (picture people doing the wave in a stadium). Following this demonstration, Eugene Kowaluk presented a slide show entitled “Parents@Work.” Photos of LLE staff were chosen to emphasize the work environment at the Laboratory and to showcase the wide variety of activities that support the operation of the OMEGA Laser System. Interspersed with slides on optics and laser construction were candid photos from Laboratory-sponsered social events.