News Releases

ORNL's Office of Communications works with national, regional, and local media outlets on news stories about the laboratory.  

For more information on ORNL and its research and development activities, please refer to one of our Media Contacts. If you have a general media-related question or comment, you can send it to

1-25 of 25 Results

DOE event marks beginning of landmark ecosystem experiment
GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. Aug. 26, 2015 – Scientists are getting a glimpse of the future with a Department of Energy large-scale experiment designed to answer questions about how carbon-rich peatlands will respond to projected warming of the climate and increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide.

ORNL chemical sampling interface features simplicity, speed
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 26, 2015 – In mere seconds, a system developed at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory can identify and characterize a solid or liquid sample, providing a valuable tool with applications in material science, forensics, pharmaceuticals, biology and chemistry.

BESC creates microbe that bolsters isobutanol production
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 14, 2015 – Another barrier to commercially viable biofuels from sources other than corn has fallen with the engineering of a microbe that improves isobutanol yields by a factor of 10.

Critical Materials Institute rare-earth recycling invention licensed to U.S Rare Earths
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 10, 2015—A new technology developed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Critical Materials Institute that aids in the recycling, recovery and extraction of rare earth minerals has been licensed to U.S. Rare Earths, Inc.

New ORNL hybrid microscope offers unparalleled capabilities
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 10, 2015 – A microscope being developed at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory will allow scientists studying biological and synthetic materials to simultaneously observe chemical and physical properties on and beneath the surface.

Preston to receive AGU's Falkenberg Award
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Aug. 6, 2015 – Climate researcher Benjamin Preston of the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory has been named to receive the American Geophysical Union's 2015 Charles S. Falkenberg Award.

ORNL kicks off 2015 United Way campaign with agency fair
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 27, 2015 – The Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory kicked off its 2015 United Way campaign with an agency fair displaying services United Way organizations provide to East Tennesseans.

Jeff Smith, ORNL’s deputy director for operations, said ORNL is one of the largest contributors to United Way in the area.

ORNL researchers make scalable arrays of ‘building blocks’ for ultrathin electronics
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 22, 2015—Semiconductors, metals and insulators must be integrated to make the transistors that are the electronic building blocks of your smartphone, computer and other microchip-enabled devices. Today’s transistors are miniscule—a mere 10 nanometers wide—and formed from three-dimensional (3D) crystals.

New pilot helps small businesses tap ORNL expertise
OAK RIDGE, Tenn. July 16, 2015—Small companies in the advanced manufacturing, transportation and building sectors have a new opportunity to partner with the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Neutrons find “missing” magnetism of plutonium
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 10, 2015—Groundbreaking work at two Department of Energy national laboratories has confirmed plutonium’s magnetism, which scientists have long theorized but have never been able to experimentally observe. The advances that enabled the discovery hold great promise for materials, energy and computing applications.

Tennant Named Director of UT-ORNL Joint Institute for Neutron Sciences
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 9, 2015—Alan Tennant has been appointed director of the Joint Institute for Neutron Sciences at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The institute is a partnership between ORNL and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

ORNL researchers Dudney, Love, Radford named Corporate Fellows
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 2, 2015 – Nancy J. Dudney, Lonnie J. Love and David C. Radford have been named Corporate Fellows at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

The Corporate Fellow designation recognizes the researchers' significant accomplishments and continuing leadership in their scientific, engineering and technological fields.

Helium ‘balloons’ offer new path to control complex materials
OAK RIDGE, Tenn. June 26, 2015 — Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a new method to manipulate a wide range of materials and their behavior using only a handful of helium ions.

Silica ‘spiky screws’ could enhance industrial coatings, additive manufacturing
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 24, 2015 — It took marine sponges millions of years to perfect their spike-like structures, but research mimicking these formations may soon alter how industrial coatings and 3-D printed objects are produced.

New tool on horizon for surgeons treating cancer patients
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 18, 2015 – Surgeons could know while their patients are still on the operating table if a tissue is cancerous, according to researchers from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School.

Advanced Composites Expert Named Newest UT-ORNL Governor's Chair
KNOXVILLE, Tenn., June 12, 2015—The position of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory as leaders in the manufacturing revolution has taken another bold step forward with the hiring of Uday Vaidya as the Governor's Chair in Advanced Composites Manufacturing.

ORNL, Hyundai Motor collaborating through new R&D agreement
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 8, 2015 – Hyundai Motor Company and the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have signed an agreement intended to strengthen the automaker’s U.S. research and development portfolio.

Hyundai Motor Company and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp.

U.S. joins the world in a new era of research at the Large Hadron Collider
New LHC data gives researchers from around the world their best chance yet to study the Higgs boson and search for dark matter and new particles.

BESC, Mascoma develop revolutionary microbe for biofuel production
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 3, 2015 – Biofuels pioneer Mascoma LLC and the Department of Energy's BioEnergy Science Center have developed a revolutionary strain of yeast that could help significantly accelerate the development of biofuels from nonfood plant matter.

Curran receives SAE Foundation industry leadership award
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 21, 2015 – Scott Curran, a researcher at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has received the Society for Automotive Engineers (SAE) Foundation’s 2015 Stefan Pischinger Young Industry Leadership Award.

ORNL demonstrates first large-scale graphene composite fabrication
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 14, 2015 – One of the barriers to using graphene at a commercial scale could be overcome using a method demonstrated by researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Four ORNL scientists selected for early career research funding
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 13, 2015 – Four researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are among 44 scientists selected by DOE's Office of Science to receive funding under the department's Early Career Research Program.

ORNL superhydrophobic glass coating offers clear benefits
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 11, 2015 – A moth’s eye and lotus leaf were the inspirations for an antireflective water-repelling, or superhydrophobic, glass coating that holds significant potential for solar panels, lenses, detectors, windows, weapons systems and many other products.

ORNL researchers probe chemistry, topography and mechanics with one instrument
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 1, 2015—The probe of an atomic force microscope (AFM) scans a surface to reveal details at a resolution 1,000 times greater than that of an optical microscope. That makes AFM the premier tool for analyzing physical features, but it cannot tell scientists anything about chemistry. For that they turn to the mass spectrometer (MS).

ORNL scientists generate landmark DOE hydropower report
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 27, 2015 – For the first time, industry and policymakers have a comprehensive report detailing the U.S. hydropower fleet’s 2,198 plants that provide about 7 percent of the nation’s electricity.


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