ORNL in the News

New Neutrino SourceScientists seek new physics using ORNL's intense neutrino source

(Oak Ridge Today) Soon to be deployed at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory is an experiment to explore new physics associated with neutrinos. The Precision Oscillation and Spectrum Experiment, or PROSPECT, is led by Yale University and includes partners from 14 academic and governmental institutions...6/22

How does your garden grow? Study identifies instigators of plant growth

(PhysOrg) A major component of wood, grain, and forage, xylan provides a strong, flexible molecular scaffolding; however, if xylan synthesis is disrupted, plants do not grow...In this study, researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy BioEnergy Science Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory identified key enzymes responsible for elongation of the xylan backbone...6/22

In Pursuit Of High-Octane Fuels

(Downstream Business) ...Researchers from Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have been conducting coordinated studies to address the opportunities and challenges of deploying high-octane fuels with midlevel ethanol blends to the passenger vehicle feet...6/22

DOE announces $16 million in funding to move energy technologies from labs to marketplace

(Oak Ridge Today) The U.S. Department of Energy on Tuesday announced nearly $16 million in funding to help businesses move promising energy technologies from DOE’s national laboratories to the marketplace. Oak Ridge National Laboratory is among the labs receiving funding, and ORNL received funding for nine projects...6/22

Atomic Sandblasters Could Replace Silicon

(Energy.gov) Virtually all electronics today rely on silicon computer chips, but this darling of the tech industry has drawbacks. Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory may have found a pathway to a cheaper, lighter and more efficient replacement...6/22

Veerle KeppensKeppens Takes Over as Head of Joint Institute of Advanced Materials

(Tennessee Today) The UT and Oak Ridge National Laboratory Joint Institute for Advanced Materials has named Veerle Keppens as its new director. Keppens, current head of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering in UT's College of Engineering, brings a knowledge of advanced materials-substances with properties that go beyond the norm in one or more aspects...6/22

Science and Technology

Quantum SimulationQuantum computer makes first high-energy physics simulation

(Nature News) Physicists have performed the first full simulation of a high-energy physics experiment — the creation of pairs of particles and their antiparticles — on a quantum computer1. If the team can scale it up, the technique promises access to calculations that would be too complex for an ordinary computer to deal with...6/21

Energy and Science Policy

Committees at Odds Over Balance of Funding Between Basic Research and Small Business R&D

(AIP) Two committees are staking out divergent stances on funding for the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer grant programs—with the House and Senate Small Business Committees both advancing bipartisan proposals to increase the fraction of agencies’ extramural R&D budgets allocated to these programs...6/21


Obama chooses PNNL to lead Northwest manufacturing center

(Tri-County Herald) Pacific Northwest National Laboratory will lead one of five centers nationwide to improve the efficiency of U.S. manufacturing. The national lab will focus on some of the most energy intensive industries in the region — food processing, advanced materials and forest products...6/22

Low Oil Prices Fuel Reconsideration Of Petroleum Reserves

(WBHM) The U.S. Department of Energy is considering the future of a public asset worth tens of billions of dollars: the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. The SPR was created after a 1973-'74 oil embargo of the United States and other countries. Arab oil-producing countries stopped selling crude to the U.S. because they were upset over its support for Israel...6/21

Giant Fusion LaserGiant U.S. fusion laser might never achieve goal, report concludes

(Science Magazine) A recent report concludes that although the $3.5 billion National Ignition Facility (NIF)—a Department of Energy (DOE) laser lab designed to heat and compress capsules of hydrogen isotopes until they fuse, releasing energy—is making technical progress, it is still a long way from its titular goal: ignition, or a fusion burn that sustains itself and produces more energy than it takes to spark it...6/21

IEEE and the U.S. Department of Energy Collaborate to Address Grid Modernization Challenges

(Business Wire) IEEE, the world's largest technical professional organization dedicated to advancing technology for humanity, today announced the IEEE Power & Energy Society (PES) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to address grid modernization challenges with a focus on the distribution level...6/21

Local and State

Report faults Tennessee for lack of diversity in courts

(Chattanooga Times Free Press) A new report faults Tennessee's court system for not adequately representing the diversity of the state's population. The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy ranks Tennessee 45th out of 51 state court jurisdictions for gender and racial diversity. The report says that the state's judiciaries are 60 percent less diverse on average than the state population...6/23