Tuesday, July 13, 2010
ORNL in the News

Cell Signaling Classification System Gives Researchers New Tool

(LaboratoryNetwork.com) Using ever-growing genome data, scientists with the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee are tracing the evolution of the bacterial regulatory system that controls cellular motility, potentially giving researchers a method for predicting important cellular functions that will impact both medical and biotechnology research. A new study from the Joint Institute for Computational Sciences, a research venture between ORNL and UT, has demonstrated how knowledge of biological systems can be derived by computational interrogation of genomic sequences. The results have implications for areas ranging from medicine to bioenergy...7/12

ORNL's Jaguar modeling Gulf oil movement

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Thom Mason, director of Oak Ridge National Laboratory, said the lab's Jaguar supercomputer -- a Cray XT5 system that's rated the world's fastest computer, capable of well in excess of 1,000 trillion calculations per second -- has been used to simulate the movement of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. "We've had some involvement," Mason said. "Jaguar was used to do some modeling of the transport of the oil out of the Gulf and it gets into this loop current and runs around Florida and up the Eastern Seaboard and heads out to sea once it gets past North Carolina."...7/12

No, Electric Vehicles Won't Bring Down the U.S. Power Grid

(The Car Connection) Last week's heat wave prompted another eruption of that perennial question: Won't electric cars that recharge from grid power overload the nation's electricity system? Or put more bluntly: Will electric vehicles bring down the U.S. power grid? The answer, equally bluntly, is: No. They won't...Two earlier, more limited studies from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory concluded essentially the same thing...7/12

DOE

Y-12 hosts socioeconomic awards lunch

(Oak Ridger) "We'll have to put up a shelf," said one member of six subcontractor groups recognized Monday by the Y-12 National Security Complex during Y-12's annual Socioeconomic Programs Awards Luncheon...7/12

Department of Energy Awards $92 Million for Groundbreaking Energy Research Projects

(DOE Press Release) U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu today announced 43 cutting-edge research projects that aim to dramatically improve how the U.S. uses and produces energy...7/12

DOE-Funded Research Projects Win 39 R&D Awards for 2010

(DOE Press Release) U.S. Department of Energy researchers have won 39 of the 100 awards given out this year by R&D Magazine for the most outstanding technology developments with promising commercial potential.  The coveted awards are presented annually in recognition of exceptional new products, processes, materials or software developed throughout the world and introduced into the market the previous year...7/9

National

BP Installs Sealing Cap on Errant Well

(Wall Street Journal) BP PLC said Monday night it had installed a new sealing cap that could halt the oil spewing from its broken well in the Gulf of Mexico, raising the possibility that a nearly three-month long environmental crisis could soon be contained...7/13

State & Regional

Chattanooga Firm Chosen To Build State's Largest Solar Power Facility

(Chattanoogan.com) The State Building Commission today approved Chattanooga-based Signal Energy as the design/build contractor for the West Tennessee Solar Farm to be located along Interstate 40 in Haywood County...7/8

Fisk University Earns Third R&D 100 Award for Radiation Detection Research

(Fisk News) For a third time, Fisk University has received one of the most highly regarded science and technology awards for its groundbreaking development of hypersensitive crystals used in the detection of radiation.  Fisk is the only minority serving institution to ever win the coveted recognition...7/8

energy & science policy

GAO Report Examines National Polar-orbiting Operation Environmental Satellite System

(AIP) A recent Government Accountability Office report requested by the House Committee on Science and Technology’s Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight sheds light on years of technical delays, administrative mismanagement, and the spiraling cost of the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS)...7/9

Inside Energy Extra

7/12 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]
Salazar sets new offshore drilling ban
Greens want Salazar's oil records
Reid outline silent on carbon caps
GAO slams DOE on loan guarantees
DOE awards $92M for ARPA-E projects

science & technology

A Scientist Takes On Gravity

(NY Times) It’s hard to imagine a more fundamental and ubiquitous aspect of life on the Earth than gravity, from the moment you first took a step and fell on your diapered bottom to the slow terminal sagging of flesh and dreams. But what if it’s all an illusion, a sort of cosmic frill, or a side effect of something else going on at deeper levels of reality?...7/12

Higgs Boson Discovered? Not So Fast

(Discovery News) The particle physics community is buzzing about a blog posted by a University of Padua (Italy) physicist saying that he's been hearing rumors about a "light Higgs boson" discovery at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) in Batavia, Illinois...7/12

Fibers That Can Hear and Sing: Fibers Created That Detect and Produce Sound

(Science Daily) MIT researchers have demonstrated that they can manufacture acoustic fibers with flat surfaces, like those shown here, as well as fibers with circular cross sections. The flat fibers could prove particularly useful in acoustic imaging devices...7/12

Other Stories

Navy Weighs Ship's Design, Along With Its Own Future

(Wall Street Journal) This summer, the Navy expects to choose between two competing designs for the Littoral Combat Ship, a fast, shore-hugging warship that will take on 21st century missions like chasing pirates and intercepting drug smugglers...7/12

The mysterious reappearance of Fidel Castro

(CS Monitor) For the past four years, Fidel Castro has been almost invisible. But now, he's back in public and appearing on a Cuban TV show tonight. Why?...7/12