Tuesday, March 1, 2011
ORNL in the News

Using supercomputers to explore ice sheet dynamics

(Physorg.com) Climate scientists use ice sheet models to better understand how ice loss affects sea levels...The goal is to address a lack of understanding by reducing uncertainties about climate and sea-level predictions through high-fidelity simulations that resolve important ice sheet features..."Right now we don't know enough to predict the dynamics of the ice sheets," said ORNL computational Earth scientist Kate Evans, who leads the SEACISM project...2/28

Nissan Goes Solar With Electric Car Charging Station at TN HQ

(Allcarselectric.com) While the majority of its vehicles will be gasoline powered for the foreseeable future, Nissan North America has taken more steps towards zero emissions motoring for its headquarters in Franklin, TN with an 18 vehicle solar charging station to supplement the already existing electric vehicle charging facilities there...If approved, Nissan North America will be collecting data from the charging facility and sharing it with research partners at the Tennessee Valley Authority, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Electric Power Research Institute in Knoxville...2/28

PPG Wins $3 Million DOE Grant to Advance PV Glass Technology

(China Glass Network) Pittsburgh-based PPG Industries has received a $3.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop the materials, coating designs and manufacturing processes necessary to commercialize a new glass article for the cadmium telluride (CdTe) module manufacturing industry...PPG says technology and process development will be coordinated through the Solar Technologies Group at PPG and project partnerships with the Center for Next Generation Photovoltaics at Colorado State University and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which is located in Tennessee and managed by UT-Battelle for the Department of Energy...3/1

DOE

Final Y-12 SWEIS released

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The National Nuclear Security Admistration has released online the Final Site-Wide Environmental Impact Statement (SWEIS) for Y-12, which outlines the strategy for modernizing the plant's capabilities with a new Uranium Processing Facility...2/28

U.S. Department of Energy and Masdar Collaborate In Testing Cutting-Edge Solar PV Coating Technologies

(DOE Press Release) The U.S. Department of Energy and Masdar, Abu Dhabi's multifaceted renewable energy initiative, announced that they will collaborate to test the performance of specially coated solar photovoltaic modules designed to avoid the moisture and cementation problems currently faced by PV module producers worldwide and prevent dry dust adhesion...2/28

National

Billions in Bloat Uncovered in Beltway

(Wall Street Journal) ...A report from the nonpartisan GAO, to be released Tuesday, compiles a list of redundant and potentially ineffective federal programs, and it could serve as a template for lawmakers in both parties as they move to cut federal spending and consolidate programs to reduce the deficit...3/1

In U.S.-Libya Nuclear Deal, a Qaddafi Threat Faded Away

(NY Times) In late 2009 the Obama administration was leaning on Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi and his son, Seif, to allow the removal from Libya of the remnants of the country’s nuclear weapons program: casks of highly enriched uranium...2/1

East Tennessee

Coal conversion pushed

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Several East Tennessee lawmakers are pushing a plan for the state and private investors to bankroll two pilot plants to demonstrate how coal reportedly can be converted into a cleaner fuel while also harvesting oil as a byproduct...3/1

energy & science policy

Inside Energy Extra

2/28 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]
- Interior issues first deepwater permit
- DOE gives Solyndra more time on loan
- New funding bill eyes energy cuts
- FutureGen selects sequestration site
- Brown urges Obama to strike GHG deal

science & technology

A Window Into the Nuclear Future

(Wall Street Journal) Bill Gates reshaped the computer industry by pumping out new versions of Microsoft Windows software every few years, fixing and fine tuning it as he went along. He's now betting that he can reshape the energy industry with a project akin to shipping Windows once and having it work, bug-free, for 50 years...2/28

Tech to the Rescue

(Wall Street Journal) The great thing about energy is that it's everywhere; the hard part is putting it to work in a useful fashion. What follows is a glimpse at three technologies under development that aim to tap unconventional energy sources—the motion of automobiles and the temperature and saltiness of seawater–to produce potentially vast new supplies of electricity...2/28

Other Stories

Frank Buckles, Last World War I Doughboy, Is Dead at 110

(NY Times) Frank Buckles was repeatedly rejected by military recruiters and got into uniform at 16 after lying about his age. He would later become the last surviving U.S. veteran of World War I...2/28

Space Tourism May Mean One Giant Leap for Researchers

(NY Times) If all goes as planned, within a couple of years, tourists will be rocketing into space aboard a Virgin Galactic space plane — paying $200,000 for about four minutes of weightlessness — before coming back down for a landing on a New Mexico runway...2/28

Tunisia's PM Ghannouchi quits amid new protests for real change

(CS Monitor) Tunisia’s Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi announced his resignation Sunday, responding to more than a month of demonstrations by protesters who said they did not want to be ruled by a crony of the president they ousted in a popular uprising...2/27

Stronger Than Steel, Novel Metals Are as Moldable as Plastic

(Science Daily) Imagine a material that's stronger than steel, but just as versatile as plastic, able to take on a seemingly endless variety of forms...2/28

Remapping Computer Circuitry to Avert Impending Bottlenecks

(NY Times) Hewlett-Packard researchers have proposed a fundamental rethinking of the modern computer for the coming era of nanoelectronics — a marriage of memory and computing power that could drastically limit the energy used by computers...2/28