Wednesday, January 23, 2013
ORNL in the News

Researchers Create World’s First Reactor-Scale Fusion Machine

(Laboratory Equipment) ITER, the world’s first reactor-scale fusion machine, will have a plasma volume more than 10 times that of the next largest tokamak, JET....US ITER, managed by DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, will continue working closely with global partners on the ITER disruption mitigation system, as the 2016 deadline for design of the system rapidly approaches...1/22

Lignin Readies for a New Role

(Chemical Processing) Lignin produced as a byproduct by the pulp and paper industry now has limited value, mainly as a fuel at pulp mills.  However, a research team from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, Tenn., has developed a process that transforms the lignin into a thermoplastic, potentially making the byproduct much more valuable...1/22

 

DOE

National Strategic Protective Services LLC to Secure DOE Oak Ridge Facilities

(Wall Street Journal Market Watch) National Strategic Protective Services, LLC (NSPS), a joint venture of Triple Canopy, Inc. and Securiguard, Inc., is pleased to be selected by the Department of Energy to deliver protective force services at its Oak Ridge facilities...1/22

Y-12/Pantex contract transition 'completely frozen'

(Knoxville News Sentinel) All transition work on the Y-12/Pantex management contract, which was awarded earlier this month to Becthel-led Consolidated Nuclear Security, has been frozen pending the outcome of a protest filed by the Babcock & Wilcox-led Nuclear Production Partners team...1/22

State & Regional

Drivers can renew Tenn. licenses at kiosks

(WBIR) The state is opening self-service kiosks that will allow drivers to renew or replace their driver licenses and state identification cards that will hopefully reduce lines and wait times...1/22

National

Hillary ClintonCongress Set to Question Hillary Clinton on Security Failures in Benghazi

(ABC News) Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is scheduled to be on Capitol Hill Wednesday, to give long-awaited testimony about State Department security and the attack that left four Americans dead in Benghazi, Libya...1/22

Obama ‘will not oppose’ House GOP plan to suspend debt limit until May

(Washington Post) House Republicans are advancing a novel plan to suspend enforcement of the federal debt limit through May 18, a move that would lift the threat of a government default and relieve the air of crisis that has surrounded their budget battle with President Obama...1/23

East Tennessee

TVA: Heavy Precipitation, Mild Winter Could Lower Power Bills Slightly

(WHNT News) The Tennessee Valley Authority expects lower power bills for February. They say increased rainfall leads to more hydroelectricity created by power-generating dams. That in turn, allows the TVA to avoid more expensive means of generating power...1/21

science & technology

Asteroid MiningAsteroid-Mining Project Aims for Deep-Space Colonies

(Space.com) A new asteroid-mining company launched Tuesday with the goal of helping humanity expand across the solar system by tapping the vast riches of space rocks...1/22

mountainsPublic Acceptance of Climate Change Affected by Word Usage

(Science Daily) Public acceptance of climate change's reality may have been influenced by the rate at which words moved from scientific journals into the mainstream, according to anthropologist Michael O'Brien, dean of the College of Arts and Science at the University of Missouri...1/22

moonThe Solar System’s Most Spectacular Geology Revealed by 50 Years of Robotic Exploration

(Wired) Before 1962, most of the planets in our solar system appeared as hardly more than blurry dots in some astronomer's telescope. The most that scientists knew about Mercury, Venus, or Jupiter was their size, surface temperature, and atmospheric composition. But on Dec. 14, 1962, the Mariner 2 spacecraft flew by Venus...1/23

Other Stories

Nebraska Governor Approves Keystone Pipeline Route

(Wall Street Journal) Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman approved on Tuesday a new route for the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which has been held up for more than a year in part because of objections to the pipeline in the state...1/22

Reports: Microsoft may invest in Dell buyout (Update)

(PhysOrg)Both CNBC and The Wall Street Journal reported that Microsoft Corp. may invest some of the money needed to take Dell Inc. private after 25 years as a publicly traded company. Tuesday's stories cited unidentified people familiar with the negotiations...1/23

Out there

George ChurchLessons From The Neanderthal Baby That Wasn't

(Forbes) Sure, a lie can travel halfway around the world as the truth ties its shoes, but nonsense about  cloning a Neanderthal baby can go even faster. Last week, Der Spiegel, the German newspaper, ran a story on Harvard geneticist George Church and his wonderful book, Regenesis, in which he discussed whether it would be possible to create a clone of a Neanderthal.