March 2009 Story Tips
Materials - Entering a new domain With the aid of a one-of-a-kind instrument at Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, scientists have made a series of discoveries that could open new pathways for nanoscale electronics.
Energy - Hydrogen shake Hydrogen for transportation may have received a boost with the discovery of an enzyme cocktail that converts cellulosic materials and water into hydrogen fuel.
Materials - Blown away An Oak Ridge National Laboratory study of structural damage from Hurricane Ike in 2008 shows that buildings with large openings such as garages and loading docks are more prone to hurricane damage -- even if the structure's construction meets local building codes.
Materials - Bulk metallic insight A combination of neutron, X-ray and atom-probe analysis has given researchers previously inaccessible insight to the atomic structure of a new multicomponent bulk metallic glass.
February 2009 Story Tips
Microscopy - STEM in liquid Researchers at ORNL and Vanderbilt University have unveiled a new technique for imaging whole cells in liquid using a scanning transmission electron microscope.
Biology - Time-saving tool Scientists studying human health, agriculture and the environment have a powerful new tool to help them better understand microbial processes and how they relate to ecosystems.
Cyberspace - Thwarting threats Colonies of cyber robots with unique missions can in near real time detect network intruders on computers that support U.S.
Computing - First petascale projects The National Center for Computational Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has granted early access to a number of projects to test Jaguar, which has peak performance of 1.6 petaflops and is the most powerful computer in the world for open science.
January 2009 Story Tips
Transportation - Smarter freight A project to speed and further safeguard the shipping of thousands of radioisotopes in the United States and afar hits the highway this year, but researchers expect the benefits to extend well beyond.
Materials - Bumper crop Assistance to Navistar in developing a new lightweight truck bumper that can save gasoline without compromising safety is being performed by a materials process team headed by Gail Ludtka of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Materials Science and Technology Division.
Nanoscience - Defective circuits Structural defects introduced into carbon nanotubes could lead the way to carbon nanotube circuits, research led by Vincent Meunier of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Computer Science and Mathematics Division shows.
December 2008 Story Tips
Climate - Spotlight on CO2 Data from NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory combined with computational power and tools provided by ORNL researchers will result in unprecedented levels of information about atmospheric carbon dioxide.
Energy Efficiency - Heat to power Combined heat and power (CHP) technologies, which capture and reuse waste heat from electric or mechanical power, account for about 9 percent of annual U.S.
Isotopes - Banner year Californium-252 and actinium-225 generated half of the $5 million in sales for the Department of Energy's National Isotope Data Center at ORNL in fiscal year 2008.
Sensors - On the prowl Mathematics and sensors come together in some new ways to form a powerful tool for combating terrorism, piracy and the transport of drugs.
November 2008 Story Tips
Energy - Powering the Big Apple High temperature superconductor (HTS) technology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is being used in a $39 million project to boost and secure Manhattan's power grid.
Energy - A DST bonus Extending Daylight Saving Time by four weeks last year reduced U.S.
Climate - Mapping change Maps showing possible regional impacts of climate change in the Dominican Republic could play a role in setting policy there and beyond.
Sensors - Right on target Keeping track of weapons at nuclear facilities and other installations could get a lot easier with a technology developed by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Visible Assets of New Hampshire.
October 2008 Story Tips
Materials - Cool cookware Burnt bacon could become a thing of the past with new cookware that uses a patented graphite foam developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Materials - Stressed out Stronger stainless steel castings are critical to the regeneration of ceramic honeycomb filters used to produce cleaner exhaust systems and upgraded turbocharger housings for diesel engines.
Sensors - Highway to safety Radiation detection monitors at more than a dozen weigh stations in the Southeast will be put to the test this month as part of an exercise to be conducted by the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office.
Materials - SEQUOIA stands tall The Department of Energy's Spallation Neutron Source has completed installation of another eagerly awaited analytical tool.
September 2008 Story Tips
Transportation - New data available The Department of Energy has just released the 27th edition of the Transportation Energy Data Book.
Energy - Microturbine magic Specialized skills and instruments at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are helping the world's leading manufacturer of microturbines make products expected to set new standards for performance and reliability.
Geology - Compelling evidence Fragments of tektites, natural glass objects, discovered by a team of geologists and geochemists help support a theory that a meteorite may be responsible for the sudden climate change that devastated large mammals in North America 11,000 years ago.
Physics - Quadrupole DNA sequencing Research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is exploring how a system of nanotubes, magnets and electrically charged particles could lead to a quicker, cheaper way to conduct DNA sequencing.
August 2008 Story Tips
Bioenergy - Natural selection By examining natural variation among cottonwood trees in nature, scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory hope to develop a strategy to maximize production of ethanol from cellulosic biomass.
Electricity - Grid watchdog Utilities have a new tool that provides them with a clearer picture of the wide-area electricity transmission system and enables decision-makers to respond swiftly to major power disruptions.
Environment - A better assessment Ecological risk assessments are vital for ensuring product safety, managing contaminated sites, protecting natural resources and other applications.
Energy - Solar City USA Oak Ridge National Laboratory is providing technical expertise and assistance in the installation of solar energy systems and related educational materials in nearby Knoxville, Tenn., which has been selected as one of 12 Solar America Cities designated by DOE.
July 2008 Story Tips
Energy - Spent fuel pellets Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers have made the first
mixed-oxide pellets from recycled spent nuclear fuel in a
process that doesn't produce a separate plutonium stream.
Materials - Simplifying complexity Tiny changes at the nanometer scale can have a colossal effect
on the properties of a material, and for the first time researchers
may have a method to see and even predict those changes.
Preparedness - Battling terrorists People living in small towns and big cities alike will be a lot safer
from the risk of improvised explosive devices because of an
ongoing effort being coordinated by Oak Ridge National
Laboratory for the Department of Homeland Security.
Materials - Under the microscope A new generation electron microscope at Oak Ridge National
Laboratory is helping scientists examine materials for fuel-
efficient cars, superconductors, solar cells and other
June 2008 Story Tips
Navigation - Micro gyro Airplanes, submarines and even automobiles of tomorrow may be equipped with arrays of inexpensive high-performance micro-mechanical gyroscopes for navigation and other purposes.
Electronics - Zinc oxide LEDs Efficient yet inexpensive light-emitting diodes made of zinc oxide could one day replace today's state-of-the-art gallium nitride-based devices.
Biology - Soil sleuths By applying new DNA chip technology, scientists are for the first time able to study the diversity of the thousands of microbial species present in soil over an entire forest stand.
Energy - Cheaper, efficient power A second generation high-temperature superconducting wire measuring 935 meters developed through the combined efforts of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's superconductivity technology group and SuperPower of Schenectady, N.Y., recently transmitted a record 158,950 amps-per-meter of current.
May 2008 Story Tips
Accelerators - Paving the way A new test facility recently installed at the Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could pay dividends for "big science" projects down the road, including the proposed International Linear Collider.
Energy - Rubber hits the road Tractor-trailers operating with single wider tires recorded improved fuel efficiency numbers between 7.2 and 10 percent when compared to rigs operating on standard-sized dual tires.
Forensics - New weapon Fingerprints that used to escape detection could soon help point to the killer.
Solar - More potent photovoltaics Using pulsed thermal processing, low-cost thin-film solar cells could see efficiency gains of up to 50 percent, increasing from their current level of about 8 percent to 12 percent.
April 2008 Story Tips
Communications - Bird’s eye view Emergency management officials miles from the scene of an event will see exactly what first responders are up against with a system being tested at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Information - Quantum leap Super-secret encryption systems, personal identification data that cannot be stolen and enhanced sensors are just a few of the applications for a quantum optical chip being developed by Warren Grice and colleagues in the Computing and Computational Sciences Directorate.
Energy - Gas cooled fuel Advanced gas reactors offer more efficient operation, less waste disposal and other benefits over water-cooled reactor designs used in U.S.
Bioscience - Protein pairs feel the heat Computer simulations published in April in Physical Review Letters have shown that pairs of proteins bound to each other undergo a profound change in their relative motion as they heat up, a phenomenon that could provide clues to how proteins interact to govern living cells.
March 2008 Story Tips
Homeland Security - Protecting ports Knowing beforehand whether a system for detecting weapons of mass destruction at U.S.
Industry - Wireless sleuths Wireless systems able to monitor and perform diagnostics on motors used in industrial processes could improve production efficiency by 10 percent to 20 percent, according to Wayne Manges of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Industrial Technologies Program.
Bioscience - Genomic forensics for plants Want to sleuth out the secrets to plant behavior? You need a genomic signature, of course.
Neutron Science - Spallation neutron record The Department of Energy's Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has been confirmed by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world's most powerful pulsed neutron spallation source.
February 2008 Story Tips
Ecology - Nature’s way Small streams disrupted by military training activities or commercial development can be restored with simple and inexpensive measures, according to findings of a group headed by Pat Mulholland of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Microbiology - A gut feeling Bacteria cells outnumber human cells in the average healthy human body by a factor of almost ten.
Nanoscience - Atom-scale switch ORNL researchers have discovered a carbon nanotube-based system that functions like an atom-scale switch.
Fusion - Lassoing turbulence Fusion power is a holy grail of our energy future, promising eventually to provide cheap, plentiful electricity with a minimum of environmental concerns and no greenhouse gases.
Climate - Improving projections A new data mining tool developed by Forrest Hoffman and colleagues could lead to a better understanding of Earth's climate systems and to more accurate models.
January 2008 Story Tips
Emergencies - Keeping Fido safe Knowing what to do with your pet in an emergency can make the difference between survival and a journey to the happy hunting ground.
Transportation - Truckin’ data A year-long nationwide highway test of six instrumented heavy trucks and 10 instrumented trailers hauling freight over three quarters of a million miles has moved into the data assessment phase.
Bioenergy - Gutting termites Scientists, long fascinated by the humble termite's ability to turn wood into energy for life, are examining the hundreds of species of microbes within its gut to learn how the process is carried out.
Environment - CO2 sleuth Knowing with precision the source of fossil fuel carbon dioxide emissions worldwide is the goal of a project proposed by a group of scientists that includes Robert Andres and T.J.
December 2007 Story Tips
Materials - Tougher teeth Artificial teeth and crowns made of ceramic material are doomed to fail – usually within six to 10 years – but that may change because of a technique that borrows from nature.
Materials - Boost for E85 One obstacle to increased use of E85 will fall when Underwriters Laboratories begins certifying fuel dispensers, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers are contributing data that could fuel the process.
Neutron Science - Record cold Just a few months after the Spallation Neutron Source announced a new world's record for beam power, its sister neutron facility at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory--the High Flux Isotope Reactor--can boast a record of its own.
Tech Transfer - Marketing innovations Oak Ridge National Laboratory has received $2.5 million from the Department of Energy as part of a new Technology Commercialization and Deployment Program to help bring energy efficient and renewable energy innovations to market.
November 2007 Story Tips
Materials - Ready, aim As the new hunting season begins, an Ohio-based company is introducing a high performance bullet based on technology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Medical - Back pain modeling Diagnosing back problems and predicting the outcome of surgery could become a lot more accurate because of a project awarded to Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the University of Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
Energy - Supercharged solar panels Inexpensive aluminum reflectors are helping to make a 700-watt solar system designed by JX Crystals far more efficient and less expensive than conventional solar panels.
October 2007 Story Tips
Biomed - Sensitive skin People with tomorrow's prosthetic hands and arms will be able to feel heat, cold and touch through a series of developments by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and NASA.
Forensics - Better body bag A novel body bag proposed by a researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could be a lifesaver for people who have to handle victims of natural disasters, wars or other events that claim multiple lives.
Climate - Underground CO2 sinks Climate change may be atmospheric, but the secret to Earth's response could be buried underground.
Energy - Steeper slopes A study of roofing damage incurred by Gulf Coast structures following Hurricane Katrina has found that buildings with steep sloped roofs held up better against the high-wind storm damage than buildings that had low sloped roofs.
September 2007 Story Tips
Microscopy - A chorus of signals Band excitation, a new family of scanning probe microscopy, moves the field towards probing energy transformation at the nanoscale, say the developers.
Neutrons - Add another instrument The Department of Energy's Spallation Neutron Source, which recently set a record for beam power for a pulsed neutron source while operating at only a tenth of its eventual 1.4 megawatts of power, has added a fourth instrument to its growing arsenal.
Energy - NASA costs eased Oak Ridge National Laboratory's efforts at improving energy efficiency could save NASA more than $820,000.
Genetics - Tastes great Different zests for beer might reveal more about alcohol's effect on the brain reward system than inherent differences in taste sensitivity, according to findings by a group of researchers led by Judy Grisel of Furman University.
Energy - Dielectric flow With today's unprecedented demands for power—as demonstrated by this summer's Southern heat wave—superconducting technology promises to turn on an electricity faucet and expand the current capacity of the nation's power grid.
August 2007 Story Tips
Energy - Beating the heat with Near-Zero Energy homes As the Tennessee Valley Authority deals with record afternoon electricity demand during the current heat wave, a home in Lenoir City is actually selling power back into the system.
Computing - Unleashed power Supercomputing-like performance could be available for countless scientific applications through an approach that exploits the power of reconfigurable computing using field-programmable gate array.
Ecology - Sturgeon study Dwindling numbers of shortnose sturgeon in Georgia's blackwater Ogeechee River system have prompted an effort to quantify the causes and prioritize recovery efforts.
Materials - Supersaturated steel Pulp and paper plants in the future may operate at lower energy levels as the result of a new joint technology developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Swagelok Company of Solon, Ohio.
Industry - Going wireless Oak Ridge National Laboratory research has aided in development of two new lines of wireless sensor products targeted at manufacturers by industry heavyweights Honeywell and General Electric.
July 2007 Story Tips
Energy - Power forward The recently-opened Dell Regional Children's Medical Center in Austin, Texas, is demonstrating the future in self-sufficient power, with the help of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Environment - Award-winning recipe Groundwater contaminants at Dover (Del.) Air Force Base are proving no match for a concoction formulated by Environmental Sciences Division researchers Aleisa Bloom, George DeLong and a team in charge of cleaning up the Superfund site.
Homeland Security - Bio watchdog Effects of a biological attack could be minimized through a new system that focuses on early identification and rapid response.
Biology - Eucalyptus sequencing ORNL is part of an ambitious international effort to decode the genome of Eucalyptus, one of the world's most valuable fiber and paper-producing trees and only the second tree to have its DNA sequenced.
June 2007 Story Tips
Energy - New life for reactors Comprehensive risk analysis provided by Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers plays a crucial role in keeping billions of dollars of electricity generation on line – without compromising safety.
Nanoscience - A clean suite In the mesoscale, or typical, world, machines are assembled a piece or component at a time.
Materials - Super stainless steel A new type of stainless steel alloy developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could allow for significantly increased operating temperatures and corresponding increases in efficiency in future energy production systems.
Energy - Wet, warm wall worries An Oak Ridge National Laboratory study shows that a newly redesigned generation of Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems, or EIFS, walls perform better than several other wall types tested for moisture and thermal performance.
May 2007 Story Tips
Medical - Atrial fibrillation alert Patients and their physicians will breathe a little easier if a collaboration between Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the University of Tennessee, and UT Medical Center succeeds.
Sensors - Energy security Thousands of fuel storage tanks across the country could be protected from sabotage with an integrated wireless sensor system developed by engineers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and industry partners.
Energy - Huge industrial savings A DOE study of 200 U.S.
April 2007 Story Tips
Climate - Thirstier trees on horizon Increased levels of ozone associated with the release of greenhouse gases are causing vegetation to use more water and may intensify the effects of global warming on ecological systems, according to findings published in New Phytologist.
Diesel - Clean savings An innovative methodology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could help speed to market reformulated diesel fuels recently patented by the Department of Energy, resulting in cleaner air and saving consumers an estimated $3.6 billion over the expected 12-year product impact period.
March 2007 Story Tips
Energy - Nanofiltered diesel A new material developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Nanoscience Center could replace a costly process in the manufacture of biodiesel that consumes chemicals, water and energy and also reduces the yield of the final product.
Environment - Leaf litter revelation Freshly fallen leaves contribute less to the levels of carbon in mineral soil than was previously believed, according to the findings of a team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers Mats Froberg and Paul Hanson.
Genomics - Decoding data By devising a novel computational approach to examining a large amount of data, scientists have gained insight into the intricate workings of proteins responsible for sensing their surroundings and transmitting that information inward.
Climate - Precision predictions A new adaptation of statistical tools applied to geophysical data sets show that the correlation between the variability of large river flows and the El Nino-Southern Oscillation index is much higher than previously thought.
February 2007 Story Tips
Materials - SNS's bright beginnings Months into its commissioning since the first neutrons were made in late April 2006, the Spallation Neutron Source is distinguishing itself as a robust neutron source.
Materials - Coatings R Us Characterization work by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has confirmed what Alpharetta, Ga., startup company C3 International founder Mark Deininger suspected.
Climate - Trees vs. temperature Just as water helps moderate temperatures of nearby land, large tracts of forests can also help lessen the extremes of land in the area, according to research published in the Jan.
Energy - Electricity from the sun ORNL engineers are working to convert their sunlight-based hybrid lighting technology into a multifunctional system that also produces electricity.
January 2007 Story Tips
Nanoscience - Atom-scale switch ORNL researchers performing basic research have discovered a carbon nanotube-based system that functions like an atom-scale switch.
Energy - Microbial cost savings A tiny microbe may hold the key to simpler, lower-cost production of ethanol from biomass sources such as trees, grasses and cornstalks.
Forensics - Dead giveaway Decompositional odors released from corpses in clandestine graves are providing a chemical fingerprint that could help law enforcement officials find these burial sites and provide evidence that ultimately points to the victim's killer.
Energy - Hot savings Homeowners could see their electric bills reduced considerably with Oak Ridge National Laboratory's integrated heat pump.
December 2006 Story Tips
Military - Hot mission A patented technique originally developed to measure temperatures inside turbine engines and fuel cells could play a key role in making electromagnetic weapons, or railguns, a reality.
Materials - Lasers in a stir Researchers at ORNL have developed a hybrid process where they use a laser in combination with friction-stir welding (FSW) -- a technique that has been in development for about 10 years for joining small metal alloys parts -- to extend its application to more materials.
Bioenergy - Analyzing wood Soon, men and mice won't be the only beneficiaries of CT technology's diagnostic wonders.
Homeland Security - Thwarting threats Oak Ridge National Laboratory's SensorNet augmented by a system being developed by Enterra Solutions could become a first line of defense against terrorist attacks or natural disasters.
November 2006 Story Tips
Engineering - Real world stress To see if your system or instrument will stand up to real-world stresses, put it through its paces in Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Environmental Effects Laboratory.
Biology - Determining protein function With genetic sequencing now routine, scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are taking the next step toward understanding the molecular function of living things by identifying and characterizing protein interactions in cells.
Electricity - Power to spare With thousands of substation power transformers around the nation operating on borrowed time, the need to develop a new generation of transformers is taking on increased importance.
Homeland Security - Threat identification Methods to search tens of thousands of documents could become more effective with a system developed by a team led by Cathy Jiao of ORNL's Computational Sciences and Engineering Division.
October 2006 Story Tips
Emissions - Ultra-low sulfur New low-sulfur diesel available at gas stations and travel centers across the nation has Oak Ridge National Laboratory research behind it, proving that reducing sulfur content in diesel fuel is critical to lessening emissions.
Microscopy - New understanding Highly detailed images that show how matter organizes first into clusters and then into particles with thousands of atoms are helping researchers better understand catalytic processes.
Transportation - Ultralight transit bus A bus that weighs half as much as conventional buses, boasts three times the fuel economy and can carry 20 percent more passengers could debut by the middle of next year.
Energy - Easier hydrogen flow Oak Ridge National Laboratory research on fiber-reinforced polymer pipes could help distribute hydrogen more efficiently to service stations of the future.
September 2006 Story Tips
Materials - Monster cutters Underground rock formations in Atlanta will provide a real-world test for monster disc cutters coated with an iron-based nano-composite developed by a team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers.
Energy - Checking the grid In the aftermath of last year's Hurricane Katrina, responders looked to the Department of Energy for information on the condition of vital infrastructural resources such as the electric power grid.
Nanoscience - Flipping the spin In a discovery that could contribute to the emerging field of spintronics, scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Institute of Physics, Chinese Academy of Science, have demonstrated a way to measure the distance an electron travels in nanoscale materials before its spin is reversed due to scattering.
Materials - Molecular electronics Computational simulations aimed at resolving a debate about how molecules bond to metal surfaces could help pave the path to smaller, faster and more powerful electronic devices such as MP3 players.
August 2006 Story Tips
Energy - A warmer future Atmospheric CO2 levels are projected to increase in the future and result in the Earth's warming.
Biology - New genetics tool Geneticists studying molecular pathways of health and disease have a novel new computational method to identify networks of the interacting genes that underlie complex traits.
Geology - Potential CO2 vault Depleted oil wells and deep saline aquifers may hold promise as repositories for atmospheric carbon dioxide, according to a team of researchers whose study is published in Geology.
July 2006 Story Tips
Medical - Bone clone Life for the 2.2 million people worldwide needing bone grafts could get a lot better if a new hybrid material developed by researchers from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee lives up to expectations.
Geology - New old detectives Geologists like Larry Anovitz may have a new weapon of choice for reconstructing ancient climates.
Nonotech - Electromechanics in liquids Recent advances in electromechanical imaging in liquid environments by researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are paving the way to new analytical tools for the biological research community.
Energy - Wider truck tires; longer miles Replacing the standard two thinner tires per wheel with a single wider tire makes heavy tractor-trailer trucks more fuel efficient and allows them to be made to run with more stability, Oak Ridge National Laboratory studies show.
June 2006 Story Tips
Computing - Preparing for duty Extensive systems design, computational and visualization capabilities at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are playing a vital role in providing a "virtual soldier" for use in the treatment of battlefield wounds.
Biology - New DNA detector Disease diagnosis, forensics and environmental monitoring are among the areas likely to benefit by a system that combines the best of two proven technologies.
Energy - Off the wall A steel wall stud that improves thermal performance within wall systems over traditional steel studs has significantly improved the R-values based on the results of several tests conducted at Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Buildings Technology Center.
SNS - Neutrons to instruments DOE's Spallation Neutron Source has posted more firsts in its procession to full operation.
May 2006 Story Tips
Military - Super - smart radios Soldiers of tomorrow could be equipped with radios immune to the enemy's attempts to jam communication and able to perform numerous functions that increase a soldier's chances of survival.
Bioprocessing - New era for nano Barriers to commercializing high-quality nanomaterials useful for an array of applications could tumble because of a process invented at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Energy - Reducing industrial energy costs A new DOE initiative is helping large industrial plants and factories to quickly assess and identify how they can operate with greater energy efficiency.
April 2006 Story Tips
Swarm Intelligence - Nature's way By borrowing from nature, Xiaohui Cui of Oak Ridge National Laboratory is devising more efficient ways to analyze large amounts of publicly available data and perform other tasks to make information more accessible and useful.
Nanotechnology - Promise and perils Anthropologists like Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Amy Wolfe don't assume that technology always makes for a better life.
Energy - Heat exchange Research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is helping to design a more practicable and energy efficient heat exchange unit in air-conditioning systems for buildings.
Biology - Skull and spinal defects Researchers at the Russell Lab, the Mammalian Genetics Research Facility at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, have generated a mutant mouse with spinal curvature and defects in the skull.
March 2006 Story Tips
Supercomputing - SciDAC event set Phani Nukala and Robert Harrison of Oak Ridge
National Laboratory are among some three dozen
researchers who will be presenting invited talks
at the 2006 Scientific Discovery through Advanced
Computing Program June 25-30 in Denver.
Biosensors - Advanced water sentinel Naturally occurring photosynthetic microorganisms
are the focus of an invention to rapidly detect
contamination of water supplies.
National Security - Striking a nerve In a project funded by the Defense Advanced
Research Projects Agency, Bill Whitten and Peter
Reilly of ORNL'S Chemical Sciences Division are
teaming with Honeywell to develop a micro gas
analyzer the size of a cell phone that combines a
very small gas chromatograph with a tiny mass
February 2006 Story Tips
Energy - Biofuels on brink Technological advances along with strong societal and economic forces make the timing perfect for development of biorefineries for the production of biofuels and biomaterials from renewable energy crop resources.
Military - Weigh-in-motion on the move A portable weigh-in-motion system developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is near ready for action as field testing is under way.
Energy - Cool cars A technology that integrates multiple cooling systems in hybrid vehicles to create greater energy efficiency is being developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Physics - More, better MIRF The atomic physics community is getting a boost with the just-completed upgrade of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Multicharged Ion Research Facility.
January 2006 Story Tips
Environment - Herbivore rampage Tiny insects that feast on juvenile pinon pine needles can have a dramatic impact on soil microclimates, which can cause a cascade effect sufficient to cause changes on a far greater scale.
Health - Early skin cancer detector Preliminary results of an optical sensing technique for early detection of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, are encouraging, according to developer Justin Baba of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Energy - Cleaner diesel emissions With federal requirements calling for a 90 percent reduction in particulates from diesel engines by 2007, Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers are working with Industrial Ceramic Solutions of Oak Ridge, Tenn., in testing a cylindrical silicon carbide fiber filter to capture the diesel soot before it is emitted into the atmosphere.
Physics - SNS instruments get ready The Department of Energy's Spallation Neutron Source, located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, is homing in on this year's completion, with focus being directed to the neutron analysis facility's scientific instruments.
December 2005 Story Tips
Computing - Bandwidth challenge champs UltraScience Net transferred 164 terabytes of data -- the equivalent of 10 to 20 times the Library of Congress -- in 24 hours and helped the team led by Caltech take top honors in the bandwidth challenge at Supercomputing 2005 in Seattle.
Wireless - Pushing the boundaries Government agencies and private companies are turning to Oak Ridge National Laboratory for modeling, simulation and fine-tuning of their wireless sensor networks.
Environment - Operation cleaner fuels Ships powered with low-sulfur diesel fuels may have cleaner emissions and actually perform better than when powered with other diesel fuels, according to findings by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Navy.
November 2005 Story Tips
Environment - Carbon and climate Climate change can have a significant impact on the amount of carbon stored in cropland soils around the nation, according to researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Energy - Better buildings Steel-faced structural insulated panels being developed with partners at Oak Ridge National Laboratory offer superior energy efficiency, durability and resistance to fire, wind and termites.
Environment - Eliminating kudzu Controlling kudzu to keep it from displacing and destroying natural vegetation on the Oak Ridge Reservation is a task being supervised by Oak Ridge National Laboratory environmental analyst Harry Quarles.
October 2005 Story Tips
Medical - First aid for CPR By applying mathematical techniques and electrical circuit basics to CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Vladimir Protopopescu and Suzanne Lenhart believe they can help save lives.
Military - Simple sampler Soldiers encountering potentially toxic compounds in Iraq will soon be able to identify the substance in mere minutes because of a probe developed by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Nanoscience - Nanoscience Center Open for business Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, the first of the DOE Office of Science's nanoscience centers, is now open.
Transportation - Truck of the future Research into gaining better understanding of the characteristics of heavy trucks operating on Interstate highways, and how those characteristics may be improved in future engineering of trucks is the focus of a program involving Oak Ridge and Argonne national laboratories.
September 2005 Story Tips
Energy - Modular marvel Hospitals, college campuses and factories are among likely customers for the Modular Integrated Energy System, which boasts 80 percent to 90 percent efficiency compared to the national average of 32 percent.
Energy - The hydrogen juggle Discovering the ideal material for reversible storage of hydrogen could become a less daunting task because of work by a team led by David Singh of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Condensed Matter Sciences Division.
Environment --Native species restoration Non-native invasive plant species, such as kudzu, fescue and Japanese honeysuckle, have caused overgrowth problems for many land areas throughout the Southeast, literally choking off plant species native to the region and reducing diversity of plant habitats.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory environmental sciences researchers have been experimenting with methods to reduce non-native species in specific areas of the laboratory's 20,000-acre environmental research park by converting them to areas more conducive to the growth of native plant species.
Security - Seal of approval Anywhere that special nuclear material is stored, the container must bear a seal that serves as a tamper indicating device.
Military --Soldier's best friend Soldiers equipped with Oak Ridge National Laboratory's TRI-NAV system will know their precise location regardless of foliage, terrain, buildings and attempts by the enemy to jam global positioning system signals, says Steve Smith, lead researcher for the project and a member of ORNL's Engineering Science & Technology Division.
August 2005 Story Tips
Environment - Sinking CO2 Carbon sequestration in the ocean could become far more feasible with a system being developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Energy - Pure, efficient power Grocery stores, schools, hotels and hospitals are likely candidates for a high-efficiency system that provides heating, cooling and electric power.
Biology - Single-cell analysis Detection and treatment of human diseases could be greatly enhanced by the Nanobiosensor for Single-Cell Analysis, a device developed by a team led by Tuan Vo-Dinh of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Life Sciences Division.
Electronics - Slick surveillance system Technology similar to that found in a CD player is at the heart of a system that could make homes and the nation safer.
July 2005 Story Tips
Defense - Real war games Dan Tufano spends a lot of time in his Ballistic Missile Defense System mode, thinking about human behavior, decision-making and how people interact with screens and machines.
Instrumentation - Stressed out Quick, accurate location and measurement of potential failure points in materials is the focus of a second-generation neutron residual stress mapping instrument jointly developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee.
Astrophysics - Connecting the dots Nuclear physics laboratory results and simulations of exploding stars come together with a big bang in a program developed by a team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Michael Smith.
Environment - Potent protein probes New probes with greatly enhanced protein activity are making life better for scientists studying environmental contaminants.
June 2005 Story Tips
Materials - Fiber diet Automated spraying of carbon or glass fiber could soon provide the most economical way to create preforms in the manufacture of body panels for automobiles, heavy vehicles and other machinery.
Technology Transfer - Reaching new heights A recently launched NASA satellite, XSS-11, features a component made of a brand new material: a radiator made of PocoFoam.
Environment - Cropland CO2 emissions Net carbon dioxide emissions from the application of agricultural lime in the United States may be about half of what has been assumed, according to research by Tris West of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Environmental Sciences Division.
Security - The super cask A method for making super-tough, lower-cost containers to transport, protect and store spent nuclear reactor fuel rods has been patented by Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers Charles Forsberg, Nuclear Science and Technology, and Vinod Sikka, Metals and Ceramics.
May 2005 Story Tips
Environment - Nitrate's worst nightmare A newly isolated group of microbes holds great promise for removing nitrate and immobilizing uranium in contaminated groundwater and soil.
Instrumentation - Symposium slated May 8-12 Some of the world's leading experts in sensors, instrumentation and measurement techniques will be at the Hilton Hotel in Knoxville May 8-12 for the 51st International Instrumentation Symposium.
Biology - Microbial sleuth Biologists trying to identify microorganisms dominating various communities in environmental samples have a new tool called a community genome array.
Environment - Lower emissions Research in high-efficiency clean combustion technology at Oak Ridge National Laboratory may lead to alternatives to traditional diesel and spark ignition engine combustion processes that would result in cleaner emissions and improve engine efficiency more than 50 percent.
April 2005 Story Tips
Physics - Stirring the Big Bang soup Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are setting up for some cataclysmic number crunching.
Chemistry - Molecules in jail By devising a method to confine molecules within individual pores of silicon dioxide, A.C.
Energy - Heat pumps and more Advanced heat pumps and refrigeration units for residential, commercial and industrial users will be among the technologies showcased at the 8th International Energy Agency Heat Pump Conference May 30 through June 2 at Caesars Palace.
Energy - Nuclear fuel study High-resolution three-dimensional images gained with a new specialized instrument will provide insight into the relationship between materials microstructure, processing conditions and nuclear fuel performance.
Environment - Tracking truck emissions Stricter federal diesel emissions standards to take effect in 2007 will require a more accurate reading of the chemical makeup of truck exhaust and emissions.
March 2005 Story Tips
Transportation - Securing Russian railcars Engineers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are helping Russia build railcars to provide better protection and more secure transport of nuclear material.
Materials - Cooling it with magnetism A new method of processing ferrous materials such as steel, developed by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, promises to produce a new class of materials with novel microstructures and superior properties.
Automobiles - Silicon carbide power Powerful new inverters incorporating silicon carbide transistors and diodes could help speed the development of hybrid electric vehicles and lead to advances in a number of other areas.
Computing - Maximizing computational power Advances in material science, biology, climate modeling and other areas hinge on efficient utilization of massive computing power, and that's part of the focus of a project headed by Jeff Vetter of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
February 2005 Story Tips
Materials - A layer at a time Through several refinements to the tried and true method of pulsed laser deposition, Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers have a new way to synthesize materials and conduct basic studies vital to creating new ones.
Homeland Security - Safe harbors Ports in the United States and around the world could be protected with a threat vulnerability analysis system being developed by a team led by Robert Patton of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Geography - Case closed "Cold case files" takes on new meaning for geochemists like Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Steven Turgeon, co-author of a Science paper that might explain a 248-million-year-old event that killed 90 percent of all marine species and 70 percent of terrestrial vertebrae species.
Genetics - Biosystems approach to skull disorder Abnormalities of the face and skull rank among the most common birth defects in humans.
January 2005 Story Tips
Forensics - The telltale tree Logs confiscated by police at a Texas murder scene and the work of a scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory may help put a killer behind bars.
Materials - Next-generation steel New products made of stronger components that are lighter in weight, more energy efficient and have an extended use life may be possible through a technology that can alter the characteristics of steel and other materials.
Nanoscience - On a butterfly's wings Microscopic images that are now achievable at single-nanometer scales usually depict advanced materials or other ordered, inorganic substances.
Sensors - Advanced fuel cells Miniature optical sensors developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could speed the development of fuel cells to power vehicles, buildings and machines.
December 2004 Story Tips
Materials - Cool under pressure Firefighters, first responders and even team mascots and Disney characters could stay comfortable with a cartridge-based integrated cooling system being developed by a team of researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Navy's Navair Research Center.
Materials - Better distributed energy A quest for superior spark plugs for natural gas engines that help power commercial buildings, schools, restaurants and hotels has ignited an effort between Champion and researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Physics - Stellar nova simulations New results from experiments at the Holifield Radioactive Ion Beam Facility will lead to improved models and perhaps a better understanding of what happens when stars explode.
Energy - Cleaner, cheaper coal power A system that monitors individual burners and allows operators of coal-fired power plants to make instantaneous adjustments to each burner can mean cleaner air and lower costs for utilities.
November 2004 Story Tips
Energy Efficiency - Doing the Texas two-step A prototype energy system now being field tested in Austin, Texas, may revolutionize how businesses power and cool their buildings.
Computing - Seeing is believing Stellar explosions, protein structure and global climate models come to life in 1 billion vivid colors as scientists study their data and view simulations on a giant screen at the Center for Computational Sciences.
Materials - Beneath the surface Researchers developing surgical implants, protective coatings for engine components, paints and hard coatings for tools are among those who will benefit from a state-of-the-art instrument recently installed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Transportation - Next-generation sensors Future automobiles and trucks may be equipped with a nitrogen oxide (NOx) sensor that helps reduce emissions by seamlessly activating NOx traps or by using other approaches.
Environment - Nature's healing hand Streamside vegetation can help reduce the impact of increasing levels of nitrogen in rainfall that can cause algal blooms and degradation of drinking water.
October 2004 Story Tips
Fusion - A twisted doughnut Stellarators confine hot plasma in a circular, three-dimensional magnetic field, or torus, inside a fusion reactor.
Geography - A vision for security National security could be enhanced with a system that quickly sorts and evaluates spatial and geographic information captured in enormous volumes of images.
Buildings - After the flood Flooding causes more damage to buildings throughout the United States--particularly residential buildings-- than any other single natural event.
Biology - Mimicking nature Nanoscale synthetic cell membranes developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory move researchers one step closer to creating artificial cells and manmade interfaces that could one day be used to treat diseases and perform other tasks at the cellular level.
Energy - Frostless in frost The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Tennessee Valley Authority are testing an electric ratepayer's dream -- a "frostless" heat pump that produces warmer air than conventional air source heat pumps, especially during the defrosting cycle and at lower overall cost.
September 2004 Story Tips
Simulation - New generation optoelectronics A synergistic effort between theory, modeling, computer simulations and experiments at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has demonstrated that oriented fluorescent nanostructures with dramatically enhanced spectral and photophysical properties can be formed from single molecules of semiconducting organic polymers.
Energy - An untapped resource Natural methane hydrate deposits offer a potentially vast source of energy, greatly surpassing all known fossil fuel resources, but many questions and challenges remain before these deposits can be tapped.
Transportation - A road to better highways Video logging, aerial photography and satellite imaging are giving researchers a better picture of highways and could pave the way to safer and more efficient roads.
Air Quality - Immediate analysis Instant analysis of the composition of air particulates -- especially vital in an air quality emergency -- is possible with the Aerosol Plasma Spectrometer.
Chemistry - The big squeeze Studying how glasses react to extreme pressure helps scientists understand how their structure evolves.
August 2004 Story Tips
Transmission - Grains of insight into the grid The way growing piles of sand behave -- with bursts of energy that result in large and small avalanches -- has served as a model for fusion researchers seeking insight into the way magnetically confined plasmas behave in fusion reactors.
Energy - More bang for the buck Spent nuclear fuel from commercial reactors could be minimized and burn-up potentially doubled if Gamma Engineering's new silicon carbide-based cladding proves viable.
Biology - Good vibrations High-resolution computational simulations and advanced visualizations are enabling researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory to identify and gain a better understanding of proteins.
July 2004 Story Tips
Materials - Power to Saturn This month's arrival at Saturn of the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft following a seven-year voyage was made possible partly by work done at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Physics - Old in the tooth Methods routinely used by Oak Ridge National Laboratory health physicists to do radiation measurements are helping University of Tennessee researchers determine the age of anthropological finds.
Chemistry - Photons on missions Semiconducting polymers that emit light of different colors for hours instead of minutes could have a bright future in the world of cryptography.
June 2004 Story Tips
Materials - Tricking the sun By simply installing roofing material coated with
special color pigments, homeowners and businesses
can cut air-conditioning costs 20 percent and
reduce peak loads on utilities.
Superconductors - Solving a mystery Widely held notions about why so-called high-
transition temperatures superconductivity occurs
may not be accurate after all, according to a
team of researchers whose paper was published in
the June 3 issue of Nature.
Environment - Mapping carbon flux Oak Ridge National Laboratory's new Flux
Ecoregions Website is a valuable tool for climate
researchers and great viewing for map lovers.
May 2004 Story Tips
Health - Environmental respiration risks Little is known about the toxicological effects of inhaling airborne ultrafine particles, but that may soon change because of research by a team led by Mengdawn Cheng of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Automobiles - Sparking a revolution Tomorrow's engines could boast greater fuel efficiency and lower emissions because of a system being developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Chemistry - Sophisticated separations A one-step process to separate cesium and strontium from caustic waste could possibly lead to significant savings in processing, transportation and storage of some 34 million gallons of nuclear waste at the Savannah River Site.
April 2004 Story Tips
Protective Gear - High-tech for first responders First responders could minimize the risk to themselves and do their jobs more effectively if they were wearing a protective suit proposed by a team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Chemistry - Self-organizing polymers By developing techniques to precisely control the growth and shape of polymers at the molecular level, researchers hope to make possible the design and synthesis of new materials with biomedical applications.
Space - Fuel for the future Neptunium stored at the Savannah River Site is slated to be processed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and provide fuel for future space missions.
Automobiles - Look ma, no belts Broken drive belts in your car might be a thing of the past because of a technology being developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
March 2004 Story Tips
Computing - Safer highways Designing highway barriers better able to protect motorists, buildings and their occupants is the driving force behind a project headed by Srdan Simunovic of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Computer Science and Mathematics Division.
Sensors - A nose for chemicals Mimicking the function of a nose is no small task, but researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a MEMS (micro-electro-mechanical systems) equivalent that can detect dozens of chemicals.
Homeland Security - New neutron detectors Instruments better able to detect evidence of nuclear weapons could be in production in a couple of years because of a patented process developed by a team led by Sheng Dai of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Partnering - Bringing industries together Oak Ridge National Laboratory's High Temperature Materials Laboratory routinely works with industries toward solving challenging problems.
February 2004 Story Tips
Space - Life beyond Earth Techniques to find microbial life in the depths of our planet may be useful for determining whether there is life on Mars.
Computing - 10 trillion and counting With eight cabinets, 256 processors and 3.2 teraflops (3.2 trillion calculations per second) of computing power, Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Cray X1 is the largest of its type in the world.
Astrophysics - Theory behind the spectacle New computer models have bolstered the case for a theory of what causes a white-dwarf supernova to occur.
January 2004 Story Tips
Energy - Nearly too cheap to meter It cost a family of four living in a next-generation Habitat for Humanity house just 82 cents a day in total energy bills, and the project continues to gain momentum.
Military - 'Fort-to-port' lickety-split Military personnel loading military cargo planes with trucks and material can speed up the process and reduce the chances for mistakes with weigh-in-motion technology being developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Health - Decontamination in a flash Anthrax and other potentially deadly biological agents pose considerable threats to the military and the public, but Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers think they have a quick and safe cure.
Biology - Attacking bioterrorism Some strains of mice aren't susceptible to anthrax or other bacteria and viruses while others are, and a project shared by Oak Ridge and Los Alamos national laboratories may help to explain why.
December 2003 Story Tips
Tech Transfer - Brighter sensors Production of prototype sensors that combine living cells with
integrated circuits could begin within a few months.
Environment - Military in step with wildlife Uncle Sam may want you, but he also wants to better understand and
protect the habitat of species like the red cockaded woodpecker,
vegetation and other components of the ecosystem.
Chemistry - Single-cell analysis To better understand diseases, scientists need to gain a far more
detailed picture of cell function and how individual proteins interact
and respond to various stimuli.
Environment - Remediation naturally Hundreds of sites around the country contaminated with chlorinated
solvents such as trichloroethylene may be candidates for monitored
November 2003 Story Tips
Forensics - Microbial detectives Bacteria from a decaying body can potentially tell investigators something about how long a person has been dead, and it's the focus of new research by Arpad Vass of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Genetics - New mice, new opportunities A mouse population that once totaled more than 200,000 is down to zero at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, but it's all part of the plan.
Transportation - More practical fuel cell Low-cost corrosion-resistant metallic bipolar plates developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could make proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells economical for use in automobiles and portable power units.
Physics - Alternate path to success Results from low-energy collisions of neutron-rich unstable nuclei and nickel-64 could point to the recipe for making the super heavy elements that have eluded physicists for some 40 years.
October 2003 Story Tips
Geography - LandScan on the map Rand McNally's 2004 Goode's World Atlas will contain the most precise population information ever because of technology recently licensed from Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Energy - Hydrogen recovery refined Petroleum refineries are one of potentially several beneficiaries of a patented separation technology developed by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Explosives - Nowhere to hide Compared to conventional microcantilever-based explosives detectors, the latest from Oak Ridge National Laboratory is more compact and boasts greater specificity to explosives.
Geography - LandScan on the map Better ceramic coatings can potentially reduce costly down time for coal-fired power plants, increase the efficiency of the process and decrease emissions.
September 2003 Story Tips
Homeland Defense - Spotlight on mass spec Miniaturized user-friendly mass
spectrometers could play a huge role in
safeguarding the nation, and about 150 of the
world's best mass spectrometrists will be in
Knoxville this month to showcase the latest in
Nuclear - Next-generation fuel Particle fuel coating technology from Oak
Ridge National Laboratory could play a big
role in deployment one day of
high-temperature gas-cooled reactors.
Environment - Life beneath the snow Microorganism populations blanketed by
Colorado's snow are a lot more active and
diverse than previously thought, according to
findings by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's
Christopher Schadt, lead author of a paper
published in the Sept.
Superconductors - Changing voltage the cool way High-temperature superconducting
transformers can perform the necessary
change in voltage in a transmission system
without the 23,000 liters of oil in conventional
August 2003 Story Tips (Special Edition)
Transmission - Three times the efficiency Transmission - Three times the efficiency
Next-generation power lines that are lighter
and can transmit far more electricity will likely
play a role in modernizing the nation's power
Superconductors - Lines of tomorrow High-temperature superconducting cables
can transmit up to five times as much
electricity as conventional cables over the
Power Generation - Electricity on the spot Power blackouts need not interrupt normal
routines such as keeping phone circuits and
hotel electric systems operating.
Prediction - Shedding light on the grid Computer models inspired by fusion research
- and sand -- can provide insight toward
understanding the complex North American
power grid and reducing its vulnerability to
ORNL Review's Energy Security Special Issue