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While serving in Kandahar, Afghanistan, U.S. Navy construction mechanic Matthew Sallas may not have imagined where his experience would take him next. But researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory certainly had the future in mind as they were creating programs to train men and wome...

Vanadium atoms (blue) have unusually large thermal vibrations that stabilize the metallic state of a vanadium dioxide crystal. Red depicts oxygen atoms.

For more than 50 years, scientists have debated what turns particular oxide insulators, in which electrons barely move, into metals, in which electrons flow freely.