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ORNL's Communications team works with news media seeking information about the laboratory. Media may use the resources listed below or send questions to news@ornl.gov.

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Pengfei Cao

Pengfei Cao, a polymer chemist at ORNL, has been chosen to receive a 2021 Young Investigator Award from the Polymeric Materials: Science and Engineering Division of the American Chemical Society, or ACS PMSE.

Parans Paranthaman, a researcher in the Chemical Sciences Division at ORNL, coordinated research efforts to study the filter efficiency of the N95 material. His published results represent one of the first studies on polypropylene as it relates to COVID-19. Credit: ORNL/U.S. Dept. of Energy

When COVID-19 was declared a pandemic in March 2020, Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Parans Paranthaman suddenly found himself working from home like millions of others.

self-healing elastomers
Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory developed self-healing elastomers that demonstrated unprecedented adhesion strength and the ability to adhere to many surfaces, which could broaden their potential use
ORNL researchers and energy storage startup Sparkz have developed a cobalt-free cathode material for use in lithium-ion batteries Credit: Ilias Belharouak/Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U.S. Dept. of Energy

Four research teams from the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory and their technologies have received 2020 R&D 100 Awards.

EERE Assistant Secretary Daniel Simmons, center right, with ORNL’s Xin Sun, EERE Deputy Assistant Secretary Alex Fitzsimmons and ORNL’s Moe Khaleel, helped launch new capabilities to advance connected and automated vehicle technologies at the DOE National Transportation Research Center at ORNL. Credit: Carlos Jones/ORNL, U.S. Dept. of Energy

ORNL and Department of Energy officials dedicated the launch of two clean energy research initiatives that focus on the recycling and recovery of advanced manufacturing materials and on connected and autonomous vehicle technologies.

Simulation of short polymer chains

Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists have discovered a cost-effective way to significantly improve the mechanical performance of common polymer nanocomposite materials.

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory shed new light on elusive chemical processes at the liquid-liquid interface during solvent extraction of cobalt (dark blue). Credit: Michelle Lehman/ORNL, U.S. Dept. of Energy

Real-time measurements captured by researchers at ORNL provide missing insight into chemical separations to recover cobalt, a critical raw material used to make batteries and magnets for modern technologies.

Batteries - The 3D connection

Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers have developed a thin film, highly conductive solid-state electrolyte made of a polymer and ceramic-based composite for lithium metal batteries.

Scientists created a novel polymer that is as effective as natural proteins in transporting protons through a membrane. Credit: ORNL/Jill Hemman

Biological membranes, such as the “walls” of most types of living cells, primarily consist of a double layer of lipids, or “lipid bilayer,” that forms the structure, and a variety of embedded and attached proteins with highly specialized functions, including proteins that rapidly and selectively transport ions and molecules in and out of the cell.

Polymer self-assembly at the liquid-liquid interface in real time

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 27, 2020 — Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee achieved a rare look at the inner workings of polymer self-assembly at an oil-water interface to advance materials for neuromorphic computing and bio-inspired technologies.