Wednesday, July 20, 2011
ORNL in the News

New ORNL building to research energy related technologies

(WBIR-TV) The new facility will be the headquarters for research to solve some of the world's most pressing problems. "We've got an energy crisis we've got to solve here," said researcher Steve Overbury....7/19

Oak Ridge establishes carbon fiber composites consortium

(PhysOrg) Fourteen companies have agreed to join with Oak Ridge National Laboratory to establish the Oak Ridge Carbon Fiber Composites Consortium, which will work to accelerate the development, demonstration and commercial application of new low-cost carbon fiber and composites materials in many different industry sectors....7/19

DOE

Departments of Energy, Defense Partner to Install Fuel Cell Backup Power Units at Eight Military Installations

(DOE Press Release) The U.S. Department of Energy has announced that as part of an interagency partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense to strengthen American energy security and develop new clean energy technologies, DOD will be installing and operating 18 fuel cell backup power systems at eight military installations across the country....7/19

NNSA issues Record of Decision, setting stage for construction of UPF

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The National Nuclear Security Administration has issued a Record of Decision on the continued operation of the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant in Oak Ridge, setting the stage for construction of the multi-billion-dollar Uranium Processing Facility....7/19

National

New debt plan gains support in Senate; House passes balanced-budget measure

(Washington Post) President Obama and lawmakers in both parties latch on to a new strategy for reducing the federal debt, saying an emerging plan to save $3.7 trillion over the next decade could help break the impasse. Meanwhile, the House passes a separate balanced-budget bill....7/20

State & Regional

Tennessee sees revenue revival

(Tennessean) Tennessee has begun to bounce back from a steep decline in tax collections that began with the recession in 2008, and officials are predicting continued growth despite a slow economy....7/20

energy & science policy

Questions Hang Over NASA's Post-Shuttle Future

(NPR) When NASA wrapped up its spaceship programs Mercury and Apollo, it had new vehicles ready to replace them. But the agency has no such plan now that the space shuttles are retiring. Some people say it's a sign the organization has lost its way, but the agency's leaders say NASA has a robust future....7/20

Who has final say over the fate of Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant?

(Christian Science Monitor) If a state wants to shutter a nuclear power plant, but the feds have relicensed it, does the state have legal grounds for closure? That question is being wrestled with in federal court....7/19

Inside Energy Extra

7/19 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]
** Murkowski: SPR sale could be illegal
** EIA backs bullish shale-gas estimates
** Oil, gas groups fault habitat rule
** DOE, Pentagon team up on fuel cells
** DOE, Ad Council tout energy efficiency

science & technology

30 Years of the Space Shuttle

(New York Times) [Interactive Graphic] An interactive timeline of the 135 space shuttle missions....7/8

Rapid Venom Evolution in Pit Vipers May Be Defensive; Marsupials That Prey On Venomous Snakes Also Evolve Rapidly

(Science Daily) New molecular research on snake-eating opossums by researchers affiliated with the American Museum of Natural History suggests that predators factor into the rapid evolution of snake venom....7/18

Other Stories

Wish You Were—Boom!

(Slate) John O'Brian and Jeremy Borsos' new book fuses the almost inherently banal form of the canned tourist dispatch with the incipient peril, and nervously giddy promise, of the nuclear age....7/13