Thursday, January 6, 2011
ORNL in the News

Technology That Breaks the Car Industry Mold

(Wall Street Journal) Cutting a car's weight is one of the best ways to boost fuel economy. And one way to reduce weight is to replace some of the steel in a car's body with a material called carbon fiber...The knitting-yarn breakthrough was developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. Researchers later persuaded a yarn factory in Lisbon, Portugal, to set up a portion of its plant to produce the product, said David Warren, the manager of transportation materials at Oak Ridge Lab...1/5

Developing radioactive 63Ni to target explosives

(R&D Magazine) When Transportation Security Administration inspectors swipe a cloth over your luggage and then place it in an analyzer to check for explosives residue, they are using a device containing 63Ni, a radioactive isotope of nickel, made at ORNL. ORNL is the exclusive producer for 63Ni in North America and perhaps worldwide. "Our only competition would probably be Russia. They have high-flux research reactors and may well be supplying the material also," explained Mitch Ferren in the ORNL Isotope Business Office...1/5

American Nuclear Society gives $5,000 to Alvin Weinberg memorial

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The Oak Ridge/Knoxville chapter of the American Nuclear Society has donated $5,000 to the Alvin Weinberg Memorial Fund. According to information distributed by ANS, the gift will be used in efforts to memorialize Weinberg -- a nuclear pioneer, science ambassador and long-time director of Oak Ridge National Laboratory...1/5


Monitoring of Internal Moisture Loads in Residential Buildings

( An insufficient amount of measured data is available on actual indoor humidity levels in U.S. households, making it difficult to design durable homes. This research project has collected 1 full year of indoor temperature and humidity data for a sample of 60 homes across three different climate regions—the hot and humid Southeast (Zone 2), the cold Northeast (Zone 5), and the marine Northwest (Zone 4)...A research methodology was developed with assistance from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, a subcontractor and member of Standing Standards Project Committee 160 that acted in an advisory role...1/5


Michael Anastasio to retire in June as Director of Los Alamos National Laboratory

(LANL News Release) Michael Anastasio announced today that he will step down in June as director of Los Alamos National Laboratory...1/5

State & Regional

Tennessee environmental officials urge radon testing

(The Tennessean) Tennessee environmental officials are urging residents to take steps this month to test for and prevent radon exposure...1/6


White House Probe Blames BP, Industry in Gulf Blast

(Wall Street Journal) The explosion that triggered last year's Gulf of Mexico oil spill was an avoidable disaster that resulted from management failures by BP PLC and its contractors, a presidential commission has concluded. But the accident also reflected systemic failures by oil companies and regulators to deal with the risks of deep-water exploration, the panel said...1/6

East Tennessee

Carver tapped to help UT President DiPietro

(Knoxville News Sentinel) An administrator who has worked at three of the University of Tennessee's campuses will serve as an adviser, facilitator, representative and liaison for UT President...1/6

energy & science policy

Inside Energy Extra

1/5 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]
- Spill panel cites management failure
- Republican power shift could impact energy, climate policy
- Markey renews bid for ANWR wilderness
- DOE rapped for lax emergency plans

science & technology

Bumblebees Taking a Nosedive in North America

(National Geographic News) Four bumblebee species once common across North America have suffered precipitous—and so far mysterious—declines, a new study shows...1/4

Toxic Oceans May Have Poisoned Early Animals

(Wired Science) Soon after complex animals made their first great strides onto the stage of life, the oceans brewed up a toxic chemical mix that put the brakes on evolutionary innovation...1/5

'Nanoscoops' Could Spark New Generation of Electric Automobile Batteries

(Science Daily) An entirely new type of nanomaterial developed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute could enable the next generation of high-power rechargeable lithium (Li)-ion batteries for electric automobiles, as well as batteries for laptop computers, mobile phones, and other portable devices...1/5

Other Stories

China and U.S. Have ‘Useful’ Talks on North Korea

(NY Times) On the heels of a North Korean plea for negotiations to end the crisis on the Korean Peninsula, the Obama administration’s top envoys on North Korean issues met on Thursday with their Chinese government counterparts for what American officials later called “useful” discussions...1/6

China Completes Stealth Fighter Prototype

(Discovery News) China appears to have completed a prototype of its first stealth fighter, highlighting Beijing's military modernization drive, but experts said Wednesday the jet will not be operational for years to come...1/5