New TRT Shifters

TRT shifts in the ATLAS Control Room provide an excellent possibility to participate in ATLAS data taking, to support our detector and to record and see (online!) many beautiful events. Plus you get to be on camera.

To help guide you through the TRT ACR Training procedures, a TRT Training Procedure Checklist (pdf) has been created. If your name is not on the list shown here (TRT Certified Shifters), or you are on the list but have not completed all of the requirements then you are not certified to take TRT shifts. To be certified, you need to follow the steps outlined in the Training Checklist, which are explained on this page.

About Shifts and Booking

For the TRT there will be one person per shift in the ATLAS Control Room (ACR). There are three shifts per day (day shift 07:00–15:00, evening shift 15:00–23:00, and night shift 23:00–07:00). Starting from 17 August 2009, you shall book blocks of three or four shifts in a row. You can find the ATLAS shift block structure and other rules going to ATLAS → Operation → Point 1 Shifts → Shift Booking “OTP-tool”. From this page you can go directly to OTP to book your shifts. In order to gain experience with the shifts and to become familiar with the general ATLAS run conditions during your shift period, please take at least two shadow shifts before your time (see below for more info on shadow shifts). In case of scheduling problems you may change your shift schedule with a help of the TRT Run Coordinator or Project Leader.

To book your shifts:

  1. Log in to the OTP web page, using your NICE user name and password. (On some browsers, e. g. Safari, the OTP tool does not work properly.)
  2. On the OTP start page, open “Book My Shifts” by clicking on the “+” in front. You should see a line containing ID, Status, Owner, From, To, Description:
    Id_number  Opened  REMBSER CHRISTOPH, "TRT Shifter in ACR"
    If this line does not appear, you are not registered as a TRT Shifter. Please contact Christoph Rembser to be included in the list.
  3. Click on the ID number, the shift booking opens up. Click on the “+” in front of Task 529150. A calendar opens up with a small coloured box for each shift. To see all shifts you are interested in, you may need to to expand the calendar by increasing the number in front of the calendar which indicates how many months should be displayed. Choose your shifts by clicking on the box corresponding to the date/time you want to book.
  4. Do not forget to save the booking by clicking the button “Save Shift Booking” (a window will pop up confirming that the shift is booked).
  5. You can also book a shift by going to “Browse”, then to the TRT column and in a row “Shift Tasks” click on “525150 – Main TRT shifter in ACR (Blocks)”.
  6. To cross-check your booking: On the OTP menu bar on the top, choose “Reports” → “Task Schedule Report” → enter the task ID (529150 for the TRT shifter in the ACR), the time range (and choose “Group by Week”), then you should see your shift booking.

Please do not cancel your shifts on short notice! In case you need to cancel less than three weeks before your scheduled shift, please try to find a colleague who can take over your shift. Otherwise do not hesitate to contact Anatoli or Christoph or Jim for help!

Before Your First Shift

As it was said above, before taking your first shift, you are expected to take a minimum of two shadow shifts in the week before your shift starts. Please judge yourself if two shifts are sufficient for you and if there is the possibility to learn enough during your shadow shift: otherwise you are welcome to take more training! The training shifts you can schedule yourself. They may be scheduled using OTP task 529100, but will not be accounted. Come to the control room a few days before the shift and make sure that you can enter the ACR and log in as a Point 1 user, as FSM operator and as editor of the ATLAS electronic logbook. The latter must be done if you have not participated in the shifts for quite a long time (more than half a year).

Make sure also to be subscribed to the TRT e-log mailing list ( We recommend to do this permanently, but it must be done at least for a day before your shift (and then you can unsubscribe after if you like). To sign up, visit the CERN Groups. In the search box for a group, enter “atlas-trt-elog”. Click on it to join.

TRT Shifter Training Instructions

All TRT Shifters are required to be certified before taking a TRT ACR Shift. TRT ACR Shifts and the training that leads to the shifter certification can only be taken at CERN, Point 1. The training can be done over a period of two days at the quickest, but it is expected to take a week to finish. It is recommended that shifters get their training the week before their first scheduled shift so that they get the most up-to-date information. Trainees should also be flexible when scheduling their training sessions as there is only a limited number of TRT Training Personnel (TTP).


Before taking TRT shifts in the ATLAS Control Room (ACR), you need to fulfil the following pre-requisites:

  • CERN Registration: When you come to CERN for the first time, follow the Users’ Office Check-In Procedure. Note you’ll need the signature of your team leader, so try to have all required documents ready before your arrival.
  • ATLAS Registration: Follow the ATLAS Registration Procedure to become a member of the ATLAS Collaboration. Note you’ll need the signature of your team leader for the ATLAS registration form, too.
  • CERN Computer Account: After completing the ATLAS registration, you should automatically get a CERN computer account. Note you must pass a web-based computer security course as soon as your account has been activated.
  • Safety Training: You can take all required saftey courses at the Safety Information Registration (SIR). For ACR shifts, you’ll need to pass levels 1, 2, 3, and 4A.
  • Access to OTP: After completing the ATLAS registration, you should automatically be able to log in to the Operational Task Planner (OTP).
  • Access to EDH: Request an authorisation password for the Electronic Document Handling System (EDH) from the IT Helpdesk. This password works like a signature for EDH documents, and it’s not the same as your usual CERN password.
  • Access to the Control Room: Access to Point 1 is open to anybody with a CERN access card, but you also need to file an Access Request for the ATLAS Control Room (“ATL_CR”) in EDH. Don’t forget to click on the “Send” button at the top of the page.
  • Point 1 Computer Account: Once you are registered in OTP, the next day you should have the corresponding Point 1 computer accounts. You can check this by trying to log in to the ATLAS Electronic Logbook (e-log). If you have a problem logging in to the e-log then please contact the TRT Run Coordinators.

New Shifter Orientation

If you have never been to CERN or to Point 1 (if you don’t know what Point 1 is then chances are you haven’t), or you have never taken an ACR shift, then a new shifter orientation is offered (upon request). The new shifter orientation will help get you acquainted with ATLAS and its operation. You first must make sure that you have fulfilled your pre-requisites (described above). If you have questions, please send e-mails to the TRT-TTP e-mail list ( Once you have fulfilled the pre-requisites (TRT-TTP can help double-check this for you), then you should set up a meeting time and place with a TTP at CERN. The TTP will then give you a tour of the Satellite Control Room (SCR), the ATLAS Control Room (ACR), and the surface test stand area (SR1). After the tour they will go over some basic information about the ATLAS detector and its operation. All of this is outlined in the New Shifter Orientation Presentation:

Finally, once that is done, you can choose to begin your practical sessions or to schedule them for a later time.

Shifter Manuals

Once you have fulfilled these pre-requisites you may continue with your TRT Shfiter Training. The first thing you should do is to read the shifter manuals:

These manuals are intended to introduce the shifter to the available tools and how to use them. Reading these before the practical session is essential to progressing with your shift training.

Training Procedures

Once you have read the manuals then you can e-mail the TRT Training Personnel (TTP) ( and setup a practical session. Also you can go to the Shifter Certification Records TWiki page and enter your name into the certification list. You are now in the system and you will soon be trained for taking TRT ACR Shifts. The training procedure consists of four main steps:

  • Practical Session (OTP Task 30910)
  • Shadow Shift 1 (OTP Task 529100)
  • Shadow Shift 2 (OTP Task 529100)
  • Certification Test

New Shifters should allow for at least three days between their arrival at CERN and their first shift (and this is assuming that all of the pre-requisites are already fulfilled). This is the bare minimum needed to get through the training. During the first day at CERN the new shifter can get through the practical session (in the morning) and their first shadow shift in the afternoon. During the second day the new shifter can take their second shadow shift, and fill out and turn in the Certification Test. The third day is needed to allow the certification test to be checked. If the pre-requisites are not fulfilled, then one should add on at least two more additional business days between arrival to CERN and their first TRT Shift.

Practical Session

Practical Sessions are held regularly in the Inner Detector Satellite Control Room (building 3159, room 004) every Wednesday from 14:00 to 17:00. Not more than four people are allowed to participate at the practical session at a time. This is booked with OTP task 30910; please at the same time send an email to the TTP e-mail list ( and explicitly request a TRT trainer. If for some reason you are not able to attend a regular session, or all possible slots are booked before your shifts you may setup an exceptional session with the TRT TTP. This is set up when you e-mail the TTP e-mail list ( A TTP will return your e-mail and set up a training session with you in the Inner Detector Satellite Control Room or the TRT SR1 building (building 2175). If you do not know where these are you can arrange for the TTP to meet you somewhere else and they will bring you to the appropriate place.

At this Practical Session the TTP will show you how to use all of the tools at the TRT Shifter Desk. To help guide your practical session a check list has been created. Please check off each item as you learn how to perform each task.

Once you have gone through the checklist and you are satisfied with your competence of the TRT Shifter Desk, you can then ask the TTP who guided you through the Practical Session to sign off on the Certification Records web page, and you can then take your first shadow shift. Please do not ignore your certification records! This is the only way to keep track of who has been trained and how has not.

Shadow Shifts

Shadow shifts can be signed up for at any time. You should make sure that you have enough time between your arrival and your first shadow shift to have fulfilled your pre-requisites, and the practical session. Training shifters need to take two shadow shifts before they can be certified. These shadow shifts cannot be on the same day. They cannot be a night shift (23:00 to 07:00). To sign up for shadow shifts one can use OTP task 529100.

At your first shadow shift, you should assume an observing role, and let the primary shifter do their duties. You are however, when there is a lull in shifter activities, encouraged to bring up and practice using the shifter tools. The shadow shift should last at least 3 hours, but you may stay as long as you like. A shifter has many different (but similar) tasks to perform through out their entire shift. The shadow shifter should check off, again, the items on their TRT Training Checklist as well and make sure they go through all of the items (either as the primary shifter does the item or as the shadow shifter does them, if they have time). Once you have finished your first shadow shift, you should have the primary shifter sign-off on your first shadow shift at the Certification Records web page, and also e-mail the TTP informing them of the completion of your first shadow shift as well as who the Primary Shifter was.

Now you may take your second shadow shift. Your second shadow shift cannot be the same day as your first shadow shift. It should be at least the next day. During the second shadow shift, the Primary Shifter should assume a supervisory role, and the shadow shifter should act as the primary shifter. As the shadow shifter goes through all of their tasks they should check them off of the TRT Training Checklist. Again the shadow shift should last at least 3 hours, but you may stay the whole shift you wish. Once you are finished with your shadow shift you should again have the primary shifter sign-off on your second shift and you should e-mail the TTP e-mail list with the date and time of your shift and the name of the primary shifter.

Certification Test

The Certification Test is a written test that each Shifter must fill out and send into the TRT Run Coordination (you should allow for at least one business day from the time you send in the test to the time your first shift is scheduled). Fill out the test and e-mail it to Once the test is checked by the TRT Run Coordination they will e-mail you, as well as sign off on your final requirement for being certified. Your certification is valid for only one year. After one year the you need to be re-certified.

More than Two Months Since Last Shift

If it has been more than two months since your last shift and you are still under the 1 year training certification, then you must take a shadow shift to refresh your training and to learn any new tools or tasks.

OTP Tasks for TRT Online Shifts

The following OTP tasks are related to TRT online shifts and shift training in 2010:

  • Task 30910 – TRT Trainee Shifter: training, see above
  • Task 529100 – TRT Shadow Shifts: training, see above
  • Task 529150 – Main TRT Shifter in ACR (Blocks): the normal shift
  • Task 529007 – TRT Reserve Shifter for ACR: stand-by, see below

You cannot book “Task 282 – Main TRT Shifter in ACR (NO Blocks)” in 2010 anymore, which means you have to take ACR shifts for at least three consecutive days.

The reserve shifters are on stand-by duty and are meant to replace a shifter on short notice. They have an on-call phone and should be able to come to the control room within one hour (better 30 minutes) when they are needed. They do not need to go to the control room and check that the actual shifter is present for each shift. As of 2010, stand-by readiness is rewarded with 15 % of the OTP credit points for a normal shift. As soon as you actually have to take a shift, you will get the full credit.

Topic attachments
I Attachment History Action Size Date Who Comment
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PDFpdf IntroductoryDaqShift-1.pdf r1 manage 5762.2 K 2009-09-23 - 12:47 UnknownUser TRT Shift DAQ Training
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PDFpdf IntroductoryDcsShift-1.pdf r1 manage 1765.0 K 2009-09-23 - 12:47 UnknownUser TRT Shift DCS Training
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PDFpdf IntroductoryDcsShift_260210_ad.pdf r1 manage 1412.4 K 2010-03-11 - 12:53 UnknownUser Update TRT DCS Introductory Manual
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PDFpdf TRTViewerShiftInstruction_v3.key.pdf r1 manage 777.4 K 2009-10-07 - 12:28 UnknownUser  
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PDFpdf TRTViewerShifterTraining.pdf r1 manage 1686.6 K 2009-10-06 - 12:11 UnknownUser TRTViewer Shifter Training Document
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PDFpdf TRT_Orientation.pdf r2 r1 manage 1167.1 K 2009-10-10 - 09:28 UnknownUser  
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PDFpdf TRT_Training_Checklist.pdf r1 manage 54.6 K 2010-01-19 - 15:19 UnknownUser  
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Topic revision: r35 - 2012-07-25 - vogel
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