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DOE captures fugitives to reduce its carbon emissions

November 16, 2011 10:00 am | News | Comments

In terms of emissions, just one pound of sulfur hexafluoride, a nontoxic gas used in electric insulation, is equivalent to about 11 tons of carbon dioxide. Energy Department experts are hunting down this and other fugitive carbon emissions and have already prevented the release of 600,000 metric tons of carbon equivalent.

Antibody library project could unlock mysteries of human gene function

November 1, 2011 11:10 am | News | Comments

A National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant to Los Alamos National Laboratory  Bioscience Division could help unravel the gnarly secrets of how many human genes function. With the new NIH Common Fund grant of more than $4 million, researchers led by Andrew Bradbury aim to develop an automated pipeline to generate antibodies against human gene products, without using animals.

LANL completes CRADA with Biomagnetics Diagnostics

September 30, 2011 8:37 am | News | Comments

Los Alamos National Laboratory successfully completed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with Biomagnetics Diagnostics Inc., in June 2011. The CRADA followed the licensing to Biomagnetics of a LANL-developed prototype waveguide-based optical biosensor.


Los Alamos achieves world-record pulsed magnetic field

August 23, 2011 11:24 am | News | Comments

A research team at Los Alamos National Laboratory have set a new world record for the strongest magnetic field produced by a nondestructive magnet. They achieved a field of 92.5 tesla on Aug. 18, taking back a record that had been held by a team of German scientists. Then they surpassed the record again the next day.

Fluid additive prevents oil-well blowouts

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

When added to spacer drilling fluid in the casings of deepwater oil wells, the TAPSS: Trapped Annular Pressure Shrinking Spacer product causes the fluids underground to shrink, counteracting the potentially devastating effects of thermal expansion.

Price is right for better nuclear fuel

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

A new chemical thorium extraction process from Los Alamos National Laboratory circumvents hazardous chemicals and high prices normally associated with the production of this highly efficient nuclear fuel.

Using neutrons to spy on the elusive hydronium ion

August 8, 2011 8:47 am | News | Comments

A Los Alamos National Laboratory research team has harnessed neutrons to view for the first time the critical role that an elusive molecule plays in certain biological reactions. The effort could aid in treatment of peptic ulcers or acid reflux disease, or allow for more efficient conversion of woody waste into transportation fuels.

Researchers find potential key for unlocking biomass energy

July 20, 2011 6:35 am | News | Comments

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory and Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center have found a potential key for unlocking the energy potential from non-edible biomass materials such as corn leaves and stalks, or switch grass.


Fire threat fades for Los Alamos as NASA measures pollution

July 5, 2011 8:03 am | by P. Solomon Banda, Associated Press, and NASA | News | Comments

A smattering of summer rain gave a boost to firefighters battling a huge forest fire near Los Alamos, letting officials lift an evacuation ban and putting the national laboratory on track to open Wednesday. The challenges aren’t over, however, as New Mexico and Arizona will likely be dealing with low-level ozone and poor air quality from the fires.

Towns near NM fire, nuclear lab wary of smoke

June 29, 2011 9:12 am | by P. Solomon Banda and Susan Montoya Bryan, Associated Press | News | Comments

Los Alamos, both the town and the laboratory of the same name, remains evacuated as a major wildfire spreads has reached the roadway just outside some of the laboratory’s property. Top lab officials and fire managers said they're confident the flames won't reach key buildings or areas where radioactive waste is stored, but some residents remained concerned for the safety of their families and nearby communities.

New Mexico fire threatens Los Alamos lab

June 27, 2011 5:10 am | News | Comments

The U.S. Dept. of Energy lab was forced to shut down its operations Monday as both workers and residents were kept out of harm’s way of a wind-driven wildfires. According to officials, all radioactive and hazardous materials at the long-time defense research site were being protected.

Scientists pioneer nanoscale nuclear materials testing capability

June 27, 2011 4:15 am | News | Comments

Electron microscopy with mechanical testing in situ has allowed Berkeley Lab scientists and their colleagues at UC Berkeley and Los Alamos National Laboratory to devise a technique for testing irradiated materials on the nanoscale that yields results on the macroscale. The technique could accelerate new materials for nuclear power applications and improve testing of nuclear power plants already in service.

Increased production of sulfur compound tied to climate change

June 24, 2011 11:53 am | News | Comments

An organic compound that smells like cabbage and has been called the "smell of the sea" could be more sensitive to global climate change than commonly believed. In a recent report, a Livermore researcher, along with colleagues from Los Alamos and Oak Ridge national laboratories and the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, found through computer modeling that dimethyl sulfide (DMS) will increase significantly in certain parts of the ocean and decrease in others if the world continues with a business-as-usual fossil fuel dependency.


Solar wind samples give insight into birth of solar system

June 24, 2011 4:14 am | News | Comments

The first oxygen and nitrogen isotopic measurements of the sun are complete, demonstrating that they are very different from the same elements on Earth. These results were the top two priorities of NASA's Genesis mission, which crashed on reentry to Earth. But the Los Alamos National Laboratory's Solar Wind Concentrator survived the crash and eventually yielded today's solar secrets.

'Produced water' used to grow algae for biofuels

June 9, 2011 12:07 pm | News | Comments

In collaboration with a Texas-based research facility, Los Alamos National Lab researchers conducted the first pilot-scale test of algae growth using saline water from an oil-production. This so-called produced water is sourced from mining operations and used to grow salt-tolerant algae for biofuel.

Research questions reality of 'supersolid' in helium-4

May 17, 2011 10:20 am | News | Comments

The long-held, but unproven idea that helium-4 enters into an exotic phase of matter dubbed a "supersolid" when cooled to extremely low temperatures has been challenged in a new paper published recently in Science .

Second Z plutonium 'shot' safely tests materials for NNSA

May 11, 2011 7:27 am | News | Comments

The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) announced that researchers from Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories have completed their second experiment in the past six months at Sandia's Z machine to explore the properties of plutonium materials under extreme pressures and temperatures.

Methane trapped under Arctic Ocean could bubble to surface

May 5, 2011 8:50 am | News | Comments

Berkeley Lab scientists have developed one of the most detailed pictures yet of how climate change could impact millions of tons of methane frozen in sediment beneath the Arctic Ocean. They found that methane could seep into the Arctic Ocean and gradually overwhelm the marine environment’s ability to break down the gas.

Helping explain the behavior of latest high-temp superconductors

May 4, 2011 4:56 am | News | Comments

A Rice Univ.-led team of physicists this week offered up one of the first theoretical explanations of how two dissimilar types of high-temperature superconductors behave in similar ways.

Say hello to cheaper hydrogen fuel cells

April 22, 2011 5:45 am | News | Comments

Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists have developed a way to avoid the use of expensive platinum in hydrogen fuel cells, the environmentally friendly devices that might replace current power sources in everything from personal data devices to automobiles.

Researchers make advances in rechargeable solid hydrogen fuel storage tanks

March 22, 2011 5:01 am | News | Comments

Researchers have revealed a new single-stage method for recharging the hydrogen storage compound ammonia borane. The breakthrough makes hydrogen a more attractive fuel for vehicles and other transportation modes.

High-Performance Innovation

February 10, 2011 8:32 am | by Paul Livingstone | Articles | Comments

As researchers scramble to deliver R&D results and bring products to market, they are turning to high-performance computing. Vendors are competing for their business. Can everyone adapt to the cloud?

Key hydrogen storage molecule unraveled

February 7, 2011 4:39 am | News | Comments

For nearly a century, nobody knew how the little molecule that’s in the middle of many of today’s hydrogen storage and release concepts was organized. Through a combination of nuclear magnetic resonance and neutron diffraction techniques, researchers at two DOE laboratories have deciphered the deceptively simple crystal structure.

Free electron laser hits milestone

January 20, 2011 4:45 am | News | Comments

Scientists at Los Alamos National Lab, N.M., have achieved a remarkable breakthrough with the Office of Naval Research's Free Electron Laser (FEL) program, demonstrating an injector capable of producing the electrons needed to generate megawatt-class laser beams for the Navy's next-generation weapon system.

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?

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