- Number 408 |
- March 3, 2014
For the first time, some of the world’s most sensitive radiation detection systems and fundamental physics research can be seen from either your desktop computer or mobile device. DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory recently launched a virtual tour showcasing its Shallow Underground Laboratory (SUL), a facility dedicated in 2011 as part of the $224-million capability replacement project jointly funded by DOE, National Nuclear Security Administration, and Department of Homeland Security. The SUL is a one-of-a-kind facility most people may never be able to visit in order to protect sensitive instruments from outside contamination and even the slightest radioactivity.
Duckweed is a tiny floating plant that's been known to drive people daffy. It's one of the smallest and fastest-growing flowering plants that often becomes a hard-to-control weed in ponds and small lakes. But it's also been exploited to clean contaminated water and as a source to produce pharmaceuticals. Now, the genome of Greater Duckweed (Spirodela polyrhiza) has given this miniscule plant's potential as a biofuel source a big boost. In a paper published February 19, 2014 in the journal Nature Communications, researchers from Rutgers University, DOE's Joint Genome Institute and several other facilities detailed the complete genome of S. polyrhiza and analyzed it in comparison to several other plants, including rice and tomatoes.
How do reindeer adapt to wind turbines in the tundra?
Are porpoises spooked by the noise of pile driving when offshore wind turbines are installed on the ocean floor?
Are bats more susceptible than birds to colliding with the huge turbines' slowly turning blades?
Researchers, students, and the millions of people who consider themselves both environmentalists and animal lovers now have a one-stop shop for answers to these questions—and many more.
WILD (Wind-Wildlife Impacts Literature Database) is a large, browsable collection of documents on the impacts to wildlife of wind energy, tidal and wave energy, power lines, and towers. Created by DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), wild.nrel.gov includes journal articles, conference papers, government reports, environmental impact studies, and more.
Using a new microscopy method, researchers at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory can image and measure electrochemical processes in batteries in real time and at nanoscale resolution.
Scientists at ORNL used a miniature electrochemical liquid cell that is placed in a transmission electron microscope to study an enigmatic phenomenon in lithium-ion batteries called the solid electrolyte interphase, or SEI, as described in a study published in Chemical Communications.
The SEI is a nanometer-scale film that forms on a battery's negative electrode due to electrolyte decomposition. Scientists agree that the SEI's formation and stability play key roles in controlling battery functionality. But after three decades of research in the battery field, details of the SEI's dynamics, structure and chemistry during electrochemical cycling are still debated, stemming from inherent difficulties in studying battery electrode materials in their native liquid environment.