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Neutron science community has reason to SING

August 17, 2011 2:43 pm | News | Comments

SING, which stands for SNS Instruments, Next Generation, is a project to outfit Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s advanced Spallation Neutron Source with 24 neutron instruments. The latest project to outfit the facility with five new instruments has been a success.

Ions control shape of nanofibers grown on clear substrate

August 16, 2011 5:13 am | News | Comments

Researchers from North Carolina State University, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and CFD Research Corporation have found a new way to develop straight carbon nanofibers on a transparent substrate. The technique utilizes a charged chromium grid, and relies on ions to ensure the nanofibers are straight, rather than curling—which limits their utility.

Microscopy generates a new view of fuel cells

August 16, 2011 4:25 am | News | Comments

A novel microscopy method at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is helping scientists probe the reactions that limit widespread deployment of fuel cell technologies.

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Self-assembly overcomes superparamagnetism

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

The development of ultra-high magnetic storage devices has been hampered by superparamagnetism, a nanoscale phenomenon that causes data loss. A new type of magnetic media and fabrication process invented at Oak Ridge National Laboratory overcomes this problem.

Alloy promises better tooling for aerospace parts

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

The developers of New Stainless Steel Alloy Tooling For High Temperature Presses that Form Aircraft Components estimate that tools made with this alloy will have an increase in lifetime over those made using the closest competing alloy.

A palladium solution for hydrogen leaks

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

Oak Ridge National Laboratory's, Oak Ridge, Tenn., Hydrogen safety sensor with nanostructured palladium cantilevers provides rapid detection of hydrogen gas in atmospheric environments, and measures its concentration.

Uniform aerogel gets the salt out

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

The future of clean water may depend on desalination technology, and engineers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have championed capacitive deionization, by inventing a mesoporous carbon material that more effectively removes salts and minerals.

Faster, cheaper way to clad metal

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

CermaClad: Rapid Metal Cladding Process offers a faster process for cladding corrosion resistant alloy, wear resistant alloys, cermet, ceramic, and metal powders on large metal surfaces, and is 25 to 50% cheaper than current technology.

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Heat pump saves with gas

August 14, 2011 8:00 pm | Award Winners

Typical heat pumps are powered from the electrical grid, but the NextAire Packaged Gas Heat Pump from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and partners uses natural gas as its primary fuel, allowing users to avoid high kilowatt demands and time-of-use rates.

ORNL's LandScan population dataset licensed to EVC

July 29, 2011 5:27 am | News | Comments

UT-Battelle has entered into an exclusive distributorship license with East View Cartographic (EVC) for a population distribution database. The LandScan High Resolution Global Population DataSet, developed at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has already seen success in a number of research, educational, humanitarian, and corporate applications.

New spin on friction-stir

July 26, 2011 5:03 am | News | Comments

Researchers Zhili Feng, Alan Frederic, and Stan David in Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Materials S&T Division have made significant progress toward a new metal processing technique, called friction-stir extrusion, that could represent a major advance in converting recyclable materials to useful products.

US ITER awards contract to General Atomics for superconducting magnets

July 20, 2011 5:15 am | News | Comments

The US ITER Project Office at Oak Ridge National Laboratory competitively awarded a multi-year contract to General Atomics to produce superconducting magnets for the central solenoid of ITER, an experimental fusion facility that aims to demonstrate the feasibility of fusion energy for the commercial power grid.

Hydrogen: The key to growing high-quality graphene?

July 19, 2011 4:16 am | by Ron Walli | News | Comments

A new approach to growing graphene greatly reduces problems that have plagued researchers in the past, clearing a path to the crystalline form of graphite's use in sophisticated electronic devices of tomorrow.

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It takes three to tango

July 13, 2011 5:47 am | News | Comments

The nucleus of an atom, like most everything else, is more complicated than we first thought. Just how much more complicated is the subject of a Petascale Early Science project led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's David Dean. According to findings outlined in Physical Review Letters , researchers who want to understand how and why a nucleus hangs together as it does and disintegrates when and how it does have a very tough job ahead of them.

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.

Neutrons, simulations reveal details of bioenergy barrier

June 16, 2011 6:21 am | News | Comments

A first of its kind combination of experiment and simulation at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is providing a close-up look at the molecule that complicates next-generation biofuels.

Package tracking system takes social media to new heights

June 14, 2011 4:17 am | by Ron Walli | News | Comments

What has made the Internet such a success could help change the way high-dollar and hazardous packages are tracked, according to Randy Walker of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Explaining the dynamics behind the best thermoelectric materials

June 7, 2011 4:27 am | by Bill Cabage | News | Comments

Neutron analysis of the atomic dynamics behind thermal conductivity is helping scientists at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory gain a deeper understanding of how thermoelectric materials work. The analysis could spur the development of a broader range of products with the capability to transform heat to electricity.

Curious case of germanium-72

June 2, 2011 9:29 am | by Leo Williams | News | Comments

Physicists from Oak Ridge National Laborator, the Univ. of Tennessee, and Germany's GSI in Darmstadt recently used ORNL's Jaguar supercomputer to explore the pair bonding of neutrons in one uncommon isotope—germanium-72. In doing so they discovered that changes in temperature and rotation take the nucleus through at least two physical phases.

Characterizing the renegade protein in Huntington's Disease

May 19, 2011 5:15 am | by Agatha Bardoel | News | Comments

An ORNL-Univ. of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine collaboration has for the first time successfully characterized the earliest structural formation of the disease type of the protein "huntingtin" that creates such havoc in Huntington's Disease.

Silver ionic liquids are powerful solvents for oil industry

May 16, 2011 10:57 am | by Agatha Bardoel | News | Comments

The separation of olefins and paraffin, two hydrocarbon compounds in petroleum waste streams, is a heavy expense for the petrochemical industry.  Oak Ridge National Lab research using powerful spectrometry methods reveal that silver complex-based ionic liquids have considerable promise as economical alternatives to existing solvents.

ORNL solar cell technology cranks up efficiency

April 29, 2011 7:38 am | News | Comments

With the creation of a 3D nanocone-based solar cell platform, a team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Jun Xu has boosted the light-to-power conversion efficiency of photovoltaics by nearly 80%.

Nanotechnologists: Taking lessons from nature

April 29, 2011 4:47 am | by David Salisbury | News | Comments

In the workaday world, engineers and scientists go to great lengths to make the devices we use as perfect as possible. When we flip on a light switch or turn the key on the car, we expect the lights to come on and the engine to start every time, with only rare exceptions. They have done so by using a top-down design process combined with the application of large amounts of energy to increase reliability by suppressing natural variability. However, this brute-force approach will not work in the nanoscale world that scientists are beginning to probe in the search for new electrical and mechanical devices.

Conducting ferroelectrics: The key to new electronic memory?

April 26, 2011 4:29 am | News | Comments

Novel properties of ferroelectric materials discovered at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory are moving scientists one step closer to realizing a new paradigm of electronic memory storage. A new study revealed that contrary to previous assumptions, domain walls in ferroelectric materials act as dynamic conductors instead of static ones.

Nature sets standard for nanoscience revolution

April 19, 2011 5:12 am | News | Comments

By striving for control and perfection in everything from computer chips to commercial jets, scientists and engineers actually exclude a fundamental force that allows nature to outperform even their best efforts. Although it may appear to defy logic, imperfections, and the seemingly randomness among even the lowly bacteria help keep nature a couple of steps ahead, according to Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers.

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