Archived News Releases for 2012
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Supercomputers, materials and bears: ORNL marks eventful 2012
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Dec. 28, 2012 The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory regained the lead in high-performance computing, enjoyed record-setting recognition for its research and became a showpiece for renewable energy technology during 2012.
Energy efficient video game technology in Titan supercomputer
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Dec. 27, 2012 Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Titan Supercomputer - the world's most powerful supercomputer - is operating with improved energy efficiency due in part to the same upgraded technology in your child's video games.
ORNL's Smith, Sokolov elected AAAS fellows
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Dec. 3, 2012 Two researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory -- Sean Campbell Smith and Alexei Sokolov -- have been elected fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
ORNL develops lignin-based thermoplastic conversion process
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 30, 2012 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 Amit Naskar of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL recipe for oxide interface perfection opens path to novel materials
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 16, 2012 By tweaking the formula for growing oxide thin films, researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory achieved virtual perfection at the interface of two insulator materials.
ORNL pushes the boundaries of electron microscopy to unlock the potential of graphene
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 15, 2012 Electron microscopy at the Department of Energy's 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.
Titan is also a green powerhouse
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 14, 2012 Not only is Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Titan the world's most powerful supercomputer, it is also one of the most energy-efficient.
ORNL's supercomputer named world's most powerful
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 12, 2012 The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is again home to the most powerful computer in the world, according to the Top500 list, a semiannual ranking of computing systems around the world.
'Strain tuning' reveals promise in nanoscale manufacturing
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 12, 2012 Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have reported progress in fabricating advanced materials at the nanoscale.
ORNL Debuts Titan Supercomputer
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 29, 2012 The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory launched a new era of scientific supercomputing today 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.
ORNL's United Way campaign tops $900,000
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 24, 2012 Oak Ridge National Laboratory raised more than $914,000 in its 2012 United Way campaign, which supports charitable agencies throughout the area.
Neutron experiments give unprecedented look at quantum oscillations
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 23, 2012 Researchers at the Department of Energy's 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.
ORNL study confirms magnetic properties of silicon nano-ribbons
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 17, 2012 Nano-ribbons 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.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory wins grants for solar power research
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 11, 2012 In a push to lower the cost of solar power, the Department of Energy has funded two projects at Oak Ridge National Laboratory focused on improving concentrating solar power collector and receiver performance.
Binder leads ORNL's Nuclear Science and Engineering Directorate
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Oct. 2, 2012 Jeffrey Binder has been appointed associate laboratory director for Nuclear Science and Engineering at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
UT-Battelle donates $60,000 to Second Harvest Food Bank
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Sep. 26, 2012 UT-Battelle today presented Second Harvest Food Bank with the first $20,000 installment of a three-year commitment of $60,000 to help the local organization feed hungry East Tennesseans.
ORNL research uncovers path to defect-free thin films
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Sep. 20, 2012 A team led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Ho Nyung Lee 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.
Wireless car charging system researched at ORNL
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Sep. 12, 2012 Power electronics engineers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are working on a new electrical vehicles system that would enable charging to be done through a wireless technology.
ORNL roof and attic design proves efficient in summer and winter
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Sep. 10, 2012 A new kind of roof-and-attic system field-tested at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory keeps homes cool in summer and prevents heat loss in winter, a multi-seasonal efficiency uncommon in roof and attic design.
ORNL's newly licensed neutron detector will advance human disease research
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Sep. 6, 2012 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 the U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory toward the commercial marketplace.
Team UT-Battelle builds a home to help ADFAC mark 25 years of service
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 31, 2012 Oak Ridge National Laboratory Director Thom Mason joined ORNL volunteers to welcome Carly Gilbert to her new home Thursday.
ORNL provides tech support to Mars mission
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 28, 2012 The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is a key contributor to the nuclear generator aboard the Mars rover Curiosity.
ORNL participates in bioterrorism conference
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 28, 2012 An Oak Ridge National Laboratory official will help moderate an upcoming conference in Washington to discuss strategies to deal with potential biological attacks.
Oak Ridge partnership merges strengths of lab, private sector
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 27, 2012 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 an award-winning text analysis system.
ORNL researchers probe invisible vacancies in fuel cell materials
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 22, 2012 Knowing the position of missing oxygen atoms could be the key to cheaper solid oxide fuel cells with longer lifetimes. New microscopy research from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is enabling scientists to map these vacancies at an atomic scale.
ORNL technology moves scientists closer to extracting uranium from seawater
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 21, 2012 Fueling nuclear reactors with uranium harvested from the ocean could become more feasible because of a material developed by a team led by the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL researchers improve soil carbon cycling models
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 16, 2012 A new carbon cycling model developed at the Department of Energy's 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.
Networcsim hoping to broaden wireless revolution
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 27, 2012 A Tennessee company has licensed award-winning software from Oak Ridge National Laboratory that will help industries install wireless networks more cost-effectively in challenging environments such as mines, offshore drilling platforms and factory floors.
New DataONE portal streamlines access to environmental data
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 23, 2012 Environmental researchers who investigate climate change, invasive species, infectious diseases, and other data-intensive topics can now benefit from easy access to diverse datasets through technology released today by the Data Observation Network for Earth, or DataONE.
Hanson, Sales named UT-Battelle Corporate Fellows
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 23, 2012 Paul Hanson and Brian Sales of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have been recognized as UT-Battelle Corporate Fellows. Only researchers who have made significant contributions to science and technological fields are recognized by this fellowship each year.
ORNL early career awards tackle range of energy challenges
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 18, 2012 Fusion, climate, nuclear physics and advanced materials make up the fields of science that will be supported at Oak Ridge National Laboratory through the latest round of awards from the Department of Energy's Office of Science Early Career Research Program.
UT-Battelle supports STEM classroom at BSA's Camp Buck Toms
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 5, 2012 UT-Battelle, the managing contractor for the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has presented the Boy Scouts of America's Great Smoky Mountain Council with a $150,000 gift for its ongoing campaign to renovate the council's Camp Buck Toms.
BESC researchers tap into genetic reservoir of heat-loving bacteria
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 2, 2012 The identification of key proteins in a group of heat-loving bacteria by researchers at the Department of Energy's BioEnergy Science Center could help light a fire under next-generation biofuel production.
ORNL/UTK team maps the nuclear landscape
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 27, 2012 An Oak Ridge National Laboratory and University of Tennessee team has used the Department of Energy's Jaguar supercomputer to calculate the number of isotopes allowed by the laws of physics.
ORNL home to new battery manufacturing R&D facility
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 25, 2012 Future automotive batteries could cost less and pack more power because of a new manufacturing research and development facility at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL wins nine R&D 100s, bringing total to 173
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 20, 2012 Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have received nine R&D 100 awards. The awards, presented by R&D Magazine, recognize the top 100 innovations of 2012 and are sometimes referred to as the "Academy Awards of Science."
ORNL microscopy reveals workings behind promising inexpensive catalyst
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 11, 2012 A newly developed carbon nanotube material could help lower the cost of fuel cells, catalytic converters and similar energy-related technologies by delivering a substitute for expensive platinum catalysts.
Food, water safety provide new challenges for today's sensors
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 24, 2012 Sensors that work flawlessly in laboratory settings may stumble when it comes to performing in real-world conditions, according to researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Oak Ridge High School senior Adam LaClair wins UT-Battelle Scholarship
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 15, 2012 Adam LaClair, a senior at Oak Ridge High School, is the recipient of the 2012 UT-Battelle Scholarship, a four-year scholarship to the University of Tennessee (UT) awarded by the managing contractor of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL's Mook wins Onnes Prize for superconductivity research
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 14, 2012 Herbert A. Mook Jr., a UT-Battelle Senior Corporate Fellow at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has won the 2012 H. Kamerlingh Onnes Prize, awarded for outstanding experiments in the study of superconductivity.
Nanotube 'sponge' has potential in oil spill cleanup
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 10, 2012 A carbon nanotube sponge that can soak up oil in water with unparalleled efficiency has been developed with help from computational simulations performed at the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL protein analysis investigates marine worm community
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 9, 2012 Techniques used by researchers from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory to analyze a simple marine worm and its resident bacteria could accelerate efforts to understand more complex microbial communities such as those found in humans.
ORNL, Yale take steps toward fast, low-cost DNA sequencing device
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 24, 2012 Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Yale University have developed a new concept for use in a high-speed genomic sequencing device that may have the potential to substantially drive down costs.
ORNL microscopy yields first proof of ferroelectricity in simplest amino acid
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 19, 2012 The boundary between electronics and biology is blurring with the first detection by researchers at Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory of ferroelectric properties in an amino acid called glycine.
ORNL process improves catalytic rate of enzymes by 3,000 percent
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 17, 2012 Light of specific wavelengths can be used to boost an enzyme's function by as much as 30 fold, potentially establishing a path to less expensive biofuels, detergents and a host of other products.
ORNL microscopy inspires flexoelectric theory behind 'material on the brink'
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 13, 2012 Electron microscopy, conducted as part of the Shared Research Equipment (ShaRE) User Program at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has led to a new theory to explain intriguing properties in a material with potential applications in capacitors and actuators.
Oak Ridge spring nature walks resume April 15
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 4, 2012 Five nature walks are scheduled this spring and summer on the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge Reservation.
Six companies earn Small Business Awards from UT-Battelle
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 2, 2012 Six companies have earned Small Business Subcontractor awards from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL process converts polyethylene into carbon fiber
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 27, 2012 Common material such as polyethylene used in plastic bags could be turned into something far more valuable through a process being developed at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
New ORNL tool developed to assess global freshwater stress
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 23, 2012 A new method to make better use of vast amounts of data related to global geography, population and climate may help determine the relative importance of population increases vs. climate change.
Standoff sensing enters new realm with dual-laser technique
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 22, 2012 Identifying chemicals from a distance could take a step forward with the introduction of a two-laser system being developed at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Students taking part in DOE 'biggest energy loser challenge'
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 7, 2012 Lessons about energy efficiency are hitting home through an online middle school pilot curriculum developed for students in Louisiana, Hawaii and Japan.
ORNL-led team advances science of carbon accounting
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 6, 2012 Determining with precision the carbon balance of North America is complicated, but researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have devised a method that considerably advances the science.
Final FACE harvest reveals increased soil carbon storage under elevated carbon dioxide
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 5, 2012 Elevated carbon dioxide concentrations can increase carbon storage in the soil, according to results from a 12-year carbon dioxide-enrichment experiment at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
ORNL completes first phase of Titan supercomputer transition
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 29, 2012 Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Jaguar supercomputer has completed the first phase of an upgrade that will keep it among the most powerful scientific computing systems in the world.
ORNL tool puts spotlight on nation's electricity generation capacity
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 27, 2012 A technology developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory could streamline and strengthen the process for siting power plants while potentially enhancing the nation's energy security.
ORNL finding has materials scientists entering new territory
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 21, 2012 Solar cells, light emitting diodes, displays and other electronic devices could get a bump in performance because of a discovery at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory that establishes new boundaries for controlling band gaps.
Knoxville firm licenses ORNL human remains discovery technology
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 21, 2012 In the hope of bringing criminals more swiftly to justice and giving greater closure to grieving families, the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has licensed a new remote sensing technology to Agile Technologies of Knoxville.
ORNL's Amit Goyal selected as Materials Research Society Fellow
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 20, 2012 Oak Ridge National Laboratory materials scientist and Corporate Fellow Amit Goyal has been named a 2012 Fellow of the Materials Research Society for distinguished research accomplishments and outstanding contributions to the worldwide advancement of materials research.
ORNL explores proteins in Yellowstone bacteria for biofuel inspiration
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 14, 2012 Studies of bacteria first found in Yellowstone's hot springs are furthering efforts at the Department of Energy's BioEnergy Science Center toward commercially viable ethanol production from crops such as switchgrass.
ORNL microscopy explores nanowires' weakest link
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 13, 2012 Individual atoms can make or break electronic properties in one of the world's smallest known conductors—quantum nanowires. Microscopic analysis at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory is delivering a rare glimpse into how the atomic structure of the conducting nanowires affects their electronic behavior.
ORNL's Zinkle elected to National Academy of Engineering
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 9, 2012 Steven J. Zinkle, a senior materials researcher at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE).
Gerald A. Tuskan named Forest Biotechnologist of the Year
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 3, 2012 Jerry Tuskan, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Distinguished Scientist in the BioSciences Division, has been named Forest Biotechnologist of the Year by the Institute of Forest Biotechnology (IFB).
ORNL, partners earn FLC honor for cookstove technology
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 2, 2012 Envirofit International, the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Colorado State University have won a Federal Laboratory Consortium award for excellence in technology transfer for a clean-burning cookstove designed for the developing world.
Four startup companies use ORNL technology to compete in "America's Next Top Energy Innovator"
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 1, 2012 Four startup companies, Borla Performance Industries, SH Coatings, TrakLok, Inc., and Woodmont Enterprises, are using Oak Ridge National Laboratory's technology to compete in the Department of Energy's "America's Next Top Energy Innovator Challenge," a competition where Americans vote online for the most innovative and promising startup companies that are using technologies from the Department's national laboratories to develop new products and businesses.
UT-Battelle gives $10,000 to Appalachian non-profit
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 1, 2012 UT-Battelle has presented $10,000 to Aid to Distressed Families of Appalachian Counties (ADFAC) to help the local organization provide housing for families in need.
ORNL microscopy reveals 'atomic antenna' behavior in graphene
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Jan. 31, 2012 Atomic-level defects in graphene could be a path forward to smaller and faster electronic devices, according to a study led by researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Metadynamics technique offers insight into mineral growth and dissolution
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Jan. 23, 2012 By using a novel technique to better understand mineral growth and dissolution, researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are improving predictions of mineral reactions and laying the groundwork for applications ranging from keeping oil pipes clear to sequestering radium.
Neutron scattering provides window into surface interactions
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Jan. 17, 2012 To better understand the fundamental behavior of molecules at surfaces, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are combining the powers of neutron scattering with chemical analysis.
ORNL experiments prove nanoscale metallic conductivity in ferroelectrics
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Jan. 9, 2012 The prospect of electronics at the nanoscale may be even more promising with the first observation of metallic conductance in ferroelectric nanodomains by researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.