Chongai Kuang Brookhaven Lab's Chongai Kuang is particular about atmospheric particles

In 2009, Chongai Kuang’s Ph.D. advisor at the University of Minnesota brought him to a Department of Energy meeting where he was introduced to members of Brookhaven Lab’s environmental science group. “I was really impressed with the work that was being done at BNL and the scientific staff that they had,” he said.  After completing his thesis dissertation on the formation of aerosol particles in the atmosphere, Kuang joined the BNL team.

“It was a good fit coming to BNL because in this division they want to study the life cycle of aerosols—how they are formed, the various transformations they undergo, and then how eventually they are removed from the atmosphere,” Kuang said. Modeling this process in such a comprehensive way has been the focus of Kuang’s research.

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Researchers have found intriguing new evidence on how the different kinds of quarks behave inside protons and neutrons. In the proton, one of the up quarks and the only down quark appear to combine into a diquark, while the remaining up quark hangs out on its own. Measurements with higher precision are planned to test the idea.Quarks pair up in protons (and neutrons)

It's often been said that two's company, but three's a crowd. Now, scientists have found that old saw may be true for the smallest bits of matter: quarks.

Nearly everything in our visible universe is built of quarks. Quarks are the smallest, indivisible particles of matter that bind together in threes to build protons and neutrons. Protons and neutrons form the nuclei that reside at the center of every atom of every molecule of every thing around us.

Now, researchers have found intriguing new evidence on how the different kinds of quarks behave inside protons and neutrons. The data and insights, which were published in the journal Physical Review Letters, have recently received further support and scrutiny from theory.

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See also…

DOE Pulse
  • Number 376  |
  • November 19, 2012
  • Titan supercomputer: Fast and green

    Titan supercomputer Titan, a supercomputer at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, is the most powerful computer in the world, according to the Top500 list, a semiannual ranking of computing systems around the world. The list was announced at the SC12 International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis in Salt Lake City, Utah.

    Titan is also one of the most energy efficient supercomputers. Titan came in at number three on the Green500 list, also announced at SC12. The list takes the world’s 500 most powerful supercomputers as ranked by the Top500 list and reorders them according to how many calculations they can get per watt of electricity.

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  • New single-shot X-ray technique makes magnetic image

    An image of a nanoscale ferromagnetic structure made using a new single-shot X-ray holography technique perfected at SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source. In the black areas, the magnetization is "up"; in the white areas, it's "down." The light and dark regions are about 100 to 150 nanometers wide. (Image courtesy Tianhan Wang) Scientists working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory have captured the first single-shot X-ray microscope image of a magnetic nanostructure and shown it can be done without damaging the material.

    This result not only demonstrates the success of a powerful new X-ray laser technique, but it also means that in the future researchers should be able to make movies showing tiny magnetic domains in the act of switching polarity, the process at the heart of computer hard-disk drives and future magnetic memory technologies. Understanding the details of magnetic switching could lead to faster, denser and more energy-efficient data storage devices.

    The research involved 42 scientists from 16 institutions in five countries and is described in a paper in Physical Review Letters. Experiments took place at SLAC’s Linac Coherent Light Source, the world’s first hard X-ray laser, whose ultrabright, ultrashort X-ray pulses reveal never-before-seen structures and properties in matter.

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  • Sustained hydrogen production from cyanobacteria achieved in the presence of oxygen

    Cultures of the microbe Cyanothece sp. ATCC 51142 are being generated from a novel photobioreactor designed at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. As society's demand for renewable energy grows, the role of hydrogen continues to expand—both as a way to store renewable energy and create hydrocarbon fuel. However, producing it inexpensively and in sufficient amounts without using fossil fuels remains a challenge.

    Scientists at DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory made headway toward that challenge by achieving uninterrupted hydrogen production from a photosynthetic microorganism for more than 100 hours in the presence of oxygen (O2). This achievement debunked the long-held belief that O2 inhibition of hydrogen (H2) production in traditional cultivation systems would make sustained H2 production during photosynthesis impossible.

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  • 'Strain tuning' reveals promise in nanoscale manufacturing

    Semicontinuous barium zirconium oxide nanodots or nanorods aligned parallel to both the c-axis and the ab-planes of the superconducting film.

    Researchers at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have reported progress in fabricating advanced materials at the nanoscale. The spontaneous self-assembly of nanostructures composed of multiple elements paves the way toward materials that could improve a range of energy efficient technologies and data storage devices.

    ORNL researchers combined theoretical and experimental studies to understand and control the self-assembly of insulating barium zirconium oxide nanodots and nanorods within barium-copper-oxide superconducting films.

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