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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Knowing the position of missing oxygen atoms could be the key to cheaper solid oxide fuel cells with longer lifetimes. New microscopy research from Oak Ridge National Laboratory is enabling scientists to map these vacancies at an atomic scale.
A new carbon cycling model developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory better accounts for the carbon dioxide-releasing activity of microbes in the ground, improving scientists' understanding of the role soil will play in future climate change.
The mobile instrument platform on NASA’s Curiosity rover, which recently landed on Mars, is too large to rely on solar-powered batteries and uses a plutonium oxide-powered generator. Oak Ridge National Laboratory developed and fabricated protective iridium alloy cladding that is designed to be so resistant to heat and impact that it remains intact even during an unplanned reentry during the spacecraft's launch or subsequent gravitational-assist flybys.
A Tennessee company has licensed award-winning software from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) that will help industries install wireless networks more cost-effectively in challenging environments such as mines, offshore drilling platforms and factory floors. Networcsim signed an agreement today to license the Radio Channel Simulator software, which won an R&D 100 Award this month.