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ORNL's awake imaging device moves diagnostics field forward

April 4, 2013 12:13 pm | News | Comments

A technology being developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory promises to provide clear images of the brains of children, the elderly, and people with Parkinson's and other diseases without the use of uncomfortable or intrusive restraints. Awake imaging provides motion compensation reconstruction, which removes blur caused by motion, allowing physicians to get a transparent picture of the functioning brain without anesthetics that can mask conditions and alter test results.

ORNL microscopy uncovers “dancing” silicon atoms in graphene

April 3, 2013 4:17 pm | News | Comments

Jumping silicon atoms are the stars of an atomic scale ballet featured in a new Nature Communications study from the U.S. Department of Energy(DOE)'s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The ORNL research team documented the atoms' unique behavior by first trapping groups of silicon atoms, known as clusters, in a single-atom-thick sheet of carbon called graphene.

Human microbe study provides insight into health, disease

March 19, 2013 9:07 am | News | Comments

Microbes from the human mouth are telling Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists something about periodontitis and more after they cracked the genetic code of bacteria linked to the condition. The research marks the first time scientists have managed to isolate and cultivate this type of bacterium.


Neutron scattering technique provides new data on adsorption of ions

February 28, 2013 8:09 am | News | Comments

The adsorption of ions in microporous materials governs the operation of a diverse range of technologies. Until now, however, researchers attempting to improve the performance of these technologies haven't been able to directly and unambiguously identify how factors such as pore size, pore surface chemistry, and electrolyte properties affect the concentration of ions in these materials as a function of the applied potential. A team of researchers has demonstrated that a technique, known as small angle neutron scattering, can be used to study the effects of ions moving into nanoscale pores.

Scientists solve mercury mystery

February 7, 2013 3:41 pm | News | Comments

By identifying two genes required for transforming inorganic into organic mercury, which is far more toxic, scientists today have taken a significant step toward protecting human health. The question of how methylmercury, an organic form of mercury, is produced by natural processes in the environment has stumped scientists for decades, but a team led by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has solved the puzzle.

Zoomable map of popular proteins offers new view of bioenergy crop

January 29, 2013 3:25 pm | News | Comments

Researchers seeking to improve production of ethanol from woody crops have a new resource in the form of an extensive molecular map of poplar tree proteins, published by a team from the U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Research paves way for larger, safer lithium-ion batteries

January 24, 2013 7:45 am | News | Comments

Looking toward improved batteries for charging electric cars and storing energy from renewable but intermittent solar and wind, scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed the first high-performance, nanostructured solid electrolyte for more energy-dense lithium-ion batteries.

RABiTS technology enables record-setting performance

January 17, 2013 7:57 am | News | Comments

A technology invented at Oak Ridge National Laboratory for manufacturing copper-oxide-based high-temperature superconducting materials has been used to make an iron-based superconducting wire capable of carrying very high electrical currents under exceptionally high magnetic fields.


Dark Clouds, But Bright Outlook for R&D

December 14, 2012 11:27 am | by Tim Studt | Articles | Comments

Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.

2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

December 14, 2012 11:25 am | Articles | Comments

2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.

ORNL develops lignin-based thermoplastic conversion process

December 3, 2012 7:15 am | News | Comments

Turning lignin, a plant's structural glue and a byproduct of the paper and pulp industry, into something considerably more valuable is driving a research effort headed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The research team has developed a process that ultimately transforms the lignin byproduct into a thermoplastic by reconstructing larger lignin molecules either through a chemical reaction with formaldehyde or by washing with methanol.

Recipe for oxide interface perfection opens path to novel materials

November 16, 2012 3:22 pm | News | Comments

By tweaking the formula for growing oxide thin films, researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory achieved virtual perfection at the interface of two insulator materials. The research team demonstrated that a single unit cell layer of lanthanum aluminate grown on a strontium titanate substrate is sufficient to stabilize a chemically and atomically sharp interface.

Pushing the boundaries of electron microscopy to unlock graphene's potential

November 16, 2012 8:46 am | News | Comments

Electron microscopy at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is providing unprecedented views of the individual atoms in graphene, offering scientists a chance to unlock the material's full potential for uses from engine combustion to consumer electronics. A research team used aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy to study the atomic and electronic structure of silicon impurities in graphene.


'Strain tuning' reveals promise in nanoscale manufacturing

November 12, 2012 3:22 pm | News | Comments

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have reported progress in fabricating advanced materials at the nanoscale. The spontaneous self-assembly of nanostructures composed of multiple elements paves the way toward materials that could improve a range of energy-efficient technologies and data storage devices.

Titan supercomputer named world’s most powerful

November 12, 2012 10:47 am | by Scott Jones, Oak Ridge National Laboratory | News | Comments

According to the Top500 list, the semiannual ranking of computing systems around the world that was announced Monday morning, Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Titan is now the world’s most potent supercomputer. It eclipses the most recent top performed, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s Sequoia, with a speed of 17.59 petaflops in testing. The Titan is a Cray XK7 hybrid system, built from 16-core processors equipped with graphic processing unit (GPU) accelerators.                 

ORNL debuts Titan supercomputer

October 30, 2012 1:36 pm | News | Comments

The U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory launched a new era of scientific supercomputing on Tuesday with Titan, a system capable of churning through more than 20,000 trillion calculations each second—or 20 petaflops—by employing a family of processors called graphic processing units first created for computer gaming. Titan will be 10 times more powerful than ORNL's last world-leading system, Jaguar.

Tiny pores in graphene could give rise to membranes

October 23, 2012 12:22 pm | by Jennifer Chu, MIT News Office | News | Comments

Much has been made of graphene’s exceptional qualities, particularly its phenomenal strength and impermeability. But the material may not be as impenetrable as scientists have thought. Recent analysis shows that the material bears intrinsic defects, or holes in its atom-sized armor. Experiments demonstrate small molecules like salts can pass easily through a graphene membrane’s tiny pores, while larger molecules were unable to penetrate.

Neutron experiments give unprecedented look at quantum oscillations

October 23, 2012 12:03 pm | News | Comments

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have found that nitrogen atoms in the compound uranium nitride exhibit unexpected, distinct vibrations that form a nearly ideal realization of a physics textbook model known as the isotropic quantum harmonic oscillator.

Study confirms magnetic properties of silicon nanoribbons

October 18, 2012 7:32 am | News | Comments

Nanoribbons of silicon configured so the atoms resemble chicken wire could hold the key to ultrahigh density data storage and information processing systems of the future. This was a key finding of an Oak Ridge National Laboratory team who used scanning tunneling microscopy and spectroscopy to validate first principle calculation that for years had predicted this outcome.

ORNL wins grants for solar power research

October 11, 2012 2:31 pm | News | Comments

In a push to lower the cost of solar power, the U.S. Department of Energy has funded two projects at Oak Ridge National Laboratory focused on improving concentrating solar power collector and receiver performance.

Research uncovers path to defect-free thin films

September 20, 2012 9:04 am | News | Comments

A team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory has discovered a strain relaxation phenomenon in cobaltites that has eluded researchers for decades and may lead to advances in fuel cells, magnetic sensors, and a host of energy-related materials. The finding could change the conventional wisdom that accommodating the strain inherent during the formation of epitaxial thin films involves structural defects.

SNS researchers overcome the freezing sample problem in biostudies

September 13, 2012 10:07 am | News | Comments

Researchers at the Spallation Neutron Source BASIS beam line at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have successfully developed a method to study biomolecules (proteins) at temperatures far below freezing using a lithium chloride preparation in the aqueous solvent that prevents freezing.

ORNL roof and attic design proves efficient

September 11, 2012 6:22 am | News | Comments

A new kind of roof-and-attic system field tested at Oak Ridge National Laboratory keeps homes cool in summer and prevents heat loss in winter, a multiseasonal efficiency uncommon in roof and attic design. The system improves efficiency using controls for radiation, convenction, and insulation, including a passive ventilation system that pulls air from the underbelly of the attic into an inclined air space above the roof.

Newly licensed neutron detector will advance human disease research

September 6, 2012 11:08 am | News | Comments

A neutron detector developed for studies focused on life science, drug discovery, and materials technology has been licensed by PartTec Ltd. The Indiana-based manufacturer of radiation detection technologies is moving the technology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory toward the commercial marketplace.

Oak Ridge partnership merges strengths of lab, private sector

August 27, 2012 10:29 am | News | Comments

An Oak Ridge engineering services firm with an international footprint has teamed with three Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists to form a subsidiary and market a text analysis system. The subsidiary, Global Security Information Analysts LLC, is the product of Professional Project Services and the inventors of Piranha, software used by military and Department of Homeland Security to analyze large sets of streaming data.

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