Tuesday, May 17, 2011
ORNL in the News

Energy Harvesters Transform Waste Into Electricity

(Science Daily) Billions of dollars lost each year as waste heat from industrial processes can be converted into electricity with a technology being developed at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory...5/16

Silver ionic liquids are powerful solvents for oil industry

(R&D Magazine) ...To get a better understanding of these silver compound ionic liquids, Eugene Mamontov, lead instrument scientist on BASIS, the Backscattering Spectrometer at ORNL’s Spallation Neutron Source, used quasielastic neutron scattering to probe the diffusion dynamics at the microscale that characterize these new solvents...5/16

DOE

Despite budget-cutting mood in Congress, East Tennessee House members support $85 billion for Y-12

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Despite the budget-cutting frenzy ongoing in Congress, there was support at Monday’s Tennessee Valley Corridor conference for the Obama administration’s pledge to seek $85 billion in funding to build a premier uranium facility at Y-12 in Oak Ridge...5/17

DOE Announces Funding for U.S.-India Joint Clean Energy Research and Development Center

(DOE Press Release) As part of the Partnership to Advance Clean Energy announced by President Obama and Prime Minister Singh of India last November, the Department of Energy has committed $25 million over the next five years to support the U.S.-India Joint Clean Energy Research and Development Center...5/16

Lawrence Pack, train conductor and Y-12's uranium

(Oak Ridger) Trains were the primary means of long-haul transportation in the 1940s. Many trains brought building materials to Y-12 and other Manhattan Project sites in Oak Ridge...5/13

National

U.S. Balks at Pakistani Bills

(Wall Street Journal) The U.S. and Pakistan are engaged in a billing dispute of sizable proportions, sparring behind closed doors over billions of dollars Washington pays Islamabad to fight al Qaeda and other militants along the Afghanistan border...5/16

China's Treasury holdings: $1.14 trillion

(CNN) China's holdings of U.S. government debt inched lower for the fifth straight month...5/16

State & Regional

TVA's Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant reactor's cooling system stalls

(The Tennessean) The Tennessee Valley Authority, which has touted the safety of its nuclear reactors amid a continuing crisis in Japan, suffered a cooling system shutdown for 40 minutes Thursday after electricity shorted out at a Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant reactor...5/17

President Obama puts personal touch on quick visit to Memphis

(Memphis Commercial Appeal) President Barack Obama would admit Monday that he is a man who "gets all choked up" at graduation ceremonies...5/16

energy & science policy

House Appropriators Begin Drafting of FY 2012 Bills

(AIP) Last week the House Appropriations Committee started to draft its FY 2012 funding bills.  Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY) announced a schedule that would send the bills funding the Department of Energy, NASA, National Science Foundation, NIST, Department of Defense, and U.S. Geological Survey to the House floor before the August 6 recess...5/16

Inside Energy Extra

5/16 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]
- Obama drilling plan praised, panned
- EPA delays boiler emissions rule
- Industry blasts DOE fracking panel
- Venture capitalists tout US innovations
- DOE invests $25M in US/India center

science & technology

What is the human genome worth?

(Nature) A high-profile claim that the Human Genome Project and associated research generated almost US$800 billion in economic benefits has been questioned by economists. The estimate comes from the Battelle Memorial Institute, headquartered in Columbus, Ohio...5/11

Control Desk for the Neural Switchboard

(NY Times) ...The group, led by Dr. Karl Deisseroth, a psychiatrist and researcher at Stanford, employed an emerging technology called optogenetics to control electrical activity in a few carefully selected neurons...5/16

New Calculations on Blackbody Energy Set the Stage for Clocks With Unprecedented Accuracy

(Science Daily) Physicists have developed a means for computing, with unprecedented accuracy, a tiny, temperature-dependent source of error in atomic clocks...5/16

First Signs of Ozone-Hole Recovery Spotted

(Scientific American) The hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica is starting to heal, say researchers in Australia...5/16

How 29 Long-Ignored Elements Could Make or Break the Clean-Energy Revolution

(Popular Science) Depending on who you ask, these long-ignored, widely-scattered elements are either a dealbreaker or no problem at all...5/11

Other Stories

As Egypt Moves Toward Elections, Anxiety Grows

(NPR) In Egypt, political parties are frantically trying to organize, register and make themselves known before elections scheduled for this fall...5/17