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Scientists design self-assembled microrobots

August 9, 2011 5:22 am | by Louise Lerner | News | Comments

Physicists at the Argonne National Laboratory have coaxed microrobots to do their bidding. The robots, just half a millimeter wide, are composed of microparticles. Confined between two liquids, they assemble themselves into star shapes when an alternating magnetic field is applied.

Scientists to assemble Kbase to aid U.S. biofuel, environment efforts

July 18, 2011 9:40 am | News | Comments

A multi-institutional team has been awarded government funding to create out of many separate streams of biological information a single, integrated cyber-"knowledgebase" (called Kbase) focused specifically on two fundamentally important forms of life.

Diagnosing advanced batteries for a longer life

July 14, 2011 5:31 am | News | Comments

Imagine a battery that truly does keep on going and going—and not for just a few years, but close to decades. At Argonne National Laboratory, materials scientist Daniel Abraham works to do just that for lithium-ion batteries.

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Plutonium tricks cells by 'pretending' to be iron

July 11, 2011 5:23 am | News | Comments

Plutonium gets taken up by our cells much as iron does, even though there's far less of it to go around. Researchers at Argonne National Laboratory and Northwestern University have identified a new biological pathway by which plutonium finds its way into mammalian cells. The researchers learned that, to get into cells, plutonium acts like a "Trojan horse," duping a special membrane protein that is typically responsible for taking up iron.

Using sound to mount microcrystals for X-ray diffraction

July 7, 2011 4:56 am | News | Comments

Brookhaven National Laboratory researchers are using high-frequency sound waves in conjunction with extremely bright X-rays to get a look at the atomic structures of the complex biological molecules that make our bodies work.

Argonne electrifies energy storage research

June 30, 2011 4:18 am | News | Comments

A multidisciplinary team of researchers at Argonne National Laboratory is working to develop advanced energy storage technologies to aid the growth of a nascent U.S. battery manufacturing industry, help transition the U.S. automotive fleet to one dominated by plug-in hybrid and electric passenger vehicles, and enable greater use of renewable energy technologies.

Putting the 'fuel' in biofuels

May 26, 2011 5:07 am | News | Comments

Recent discussions of methods by which biomass—grasses, trees, and other vegetation—could be turned into fuel makes a lot of sense in theory. Plant matter is composed of energy-intensive carbohydrates, but even now scientists still don't have the perfect solution for converting plant sugars into combustible fuels.

Nanoparticles help scientists harvest light with solar fuels

May 19, 2011 7:58 am | News | Comments

The humble alga, hated by boaters and pool owners, may someday help provide us with the raw machinery to power our appliances. A group of scientists at Argonne National Laboratory, led by chemist Lisa Utschig, has linked platinum nanoparticles with algae proteins, commandeering photosynthesis to produce hydrogen instead. The system produces hydrogen at a rate five times greater than the previous record-setting method.

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New isotope found for climatological dating

May 12, 2011 4:53 am | News | Comments

Radioactive dating is used to determine everything from the age of dinosaur fossils to Native American arrowheads. A new technique recently developed at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory may give researchers another tool for radioactive dating that could be of particular use in studying the history of climate change.

Combining gas and diesel engines could yield best of both worlds

May 5, 2011 4:37 am | News | Comments

It may be hard to believe, but the beloved gasoline engine that powers more than 200 million cars across America every day didn't get its status because it's the most efficient engine. Diesel engines can be more than twice as efficient, but they spew soot and pollutants into the air. Could researchers at Argonne National Laboratory engineer a union between the two—combining the best of both?

Products from Government-sponsored Research

April 8, 2011 7:19 am | by Rita C. Peters | Articles | Comments

Argonne National Laboratory (Argonne, Ill.) has recently commercialized its lithium-rich composite cathode technology for lithium-ion batteries with licenses to GM, Envia, Toda Kogyo, LG Chem, and BASF.

Research Insights

April 8, 2011 6:08 am | by Rita C. Peters | Articles | Comments

Government lab executives comment on pressing topics.

CARIBU facility opens to study rare nuclei

April 1, 2011 6:20 am | News | Comments

Last week, a stream of highly unusual ions shot through a tiny nozzle at 76 million miles per hour—and CARIBU, a facility designed to study special nuclei normally only created in stars, officially opened for business.

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Biologists find new chink in staph's armor

March 25, 2011 5:50 am | News | Comments

The battle against deadly staph infections is closer to victory as Illinois researchers have uncovered secrets of how the bacterium protects itself from human immune attacks, which could lead to more effective anti-staph therapies.

Researchers find enhanced magnetization in bismuth ferrite films

March 21, 2011 4:40 am | News | Comments

Berkeley Lab researchers have enhanced the spontaneous magnetization in a special form of multiferroic bismuth ferrite. What’s more, they can turn this magnetization “on/off” through the application of an external electric field, an ability for the advancement of spintronic technology.

Argonne, Nalco reach licensing deal on resin wafer technology

March 17, 2011 5:23 am | News | Comments

Argonne National Laboratory and Nalco Company have reached a licensing agreement for an electrodeionization technology that will help reduce the cost of producing clean energy and of the chemicals and water used in industry. The separations technology can process biomass-based feedstocks into biofuels and chemicals.

Engineering atomic interfaces for new electronics

February 18, 2011 3:10 am | News | Comments

A multi-institutional team has made fundamental discoveries at the border regions, called interfaces, between oxide materials. Led by Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison materials science and engineering professor Chang-Beom Eom, the team has discovered how to manipulate electrons oxide interfaces by inserting a single layer of atoms. The researchers also have discovered unusual electron behaviors at these engineered interfaces.

What Obama’s proposed budget means for R & D

February 15, 2011 6:29 am | News | Comments

Analysis of the $3.8 trillion proposed budget is beginning to flow, and early reports of its impact on research and innovation is positive, at least from the perspective of scientists. The president placed priorities on energy and medical research, which explains why standout winners in the budget plan include the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and U.S. Dept of Energy.

New instructive approach calculates lifetime solar energy cost

February 8, 2011 4:01 am | News | Comments

Researchers at the Argonne National Laboratory in partnership with an analyst at Gartner, Inc. have developed a new and more instructive approach to calculate the lifetime cost for a solar-generated energy system for comparison to other energy systems.

Argonne, Envia strike deal to license advanced battery technology

January 27, 2011 5:55 am | News | Comments

Argonne National Laboratory has licensed its cathode technology to Envia Systems, based in Newark, Calif. The deal marks the fifth licensing agreement for the Argonne-developed cathode technology.

Chemists document workings of key staph enzyme

January 19, 2011 3:15 am | News | Comments

Researchers have determined the structure and mechanism of an enzyme that performs the crucial first step in the formation of cholesterol and a key virulence factor in staph bacteria.

GM, Argonne sign licensing deal for advanced battery chemistry

January 10, 2011 3:53 am | News | Comments

General Motors Co. and the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory announced they have reached a worldwide licensing agreement to use Argonne's patented composite cathode material to make advanced lithium-ion batteries that last longer between charges and can charge at higher voltages.

Argonne, LG cathode technology will help power the Chevrolet Volt

January 6, 2011 2:05 pm | by Angela Hardin | News | Comments

The lithium-ion battery cell technology that is powering GM’s Chevrolet Volt, the first mass-produced plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, has reached a licensing agreement between LG Chem and the DOE lab that patented the cathode material. LG Chem contributes SRS separator safety technology with the Argonne-developed cells.

New Economy, New Playbook: Part 8

December 10, 2010 8:44 am | by Paul Livingstone | Articles | Comments

Part 8 of R&D Magazine's 2010 executive roundtable. What do you think the next great invention will be?

New Economy, New Playbook: Part 7

December 10, 2010 8:35 am | by Paul Livingstone | Articles | Comments

Part 7 of R&D Magazine's 2010 executive roundtable. In your point of view, what are some of the greatest threats to R&D in the U.S. right now? Are these roadblocks experienced by your organization, and, if so, how are you dealing with them?

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