Friday, May 25, 2012
ORNL in the News

Food, water safety provide new challenges for today's sensors

(PhysOrg) Sensors that work flawlessly in laboratory settings may stumble when it comes to performing in real-world conditions, according to researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory...5/24

A Titan computer at ORNL by football season

(Knoxville News Sentinel) If things go as well as hoped and planned, it appears that Oak Ridge National Laboratory could host a 20 petaflops computer sometime in October -- or thereabouts -- with the planned transformation of Jaguar into Titan...5/25

Rising Temperatures Expose Cities' Vulnerable Electrical Supplies

(Climate Science Watch) Extreme summer heat drives up electricity demand for cooling. This can strain electrical supply, transmission, and distribution systems and thereby increase the risks of very costly and disruptive blackouts. An analysis released by Oak Ridge National Laboratory cites two examples in Arizona in 2011 that illustrate the vulnerability of the electrical system under very hot conditions...5/24




Battelle Engineers Work on Fix at Chernobyl

(Environmental Expert) When reactor No. 4 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant exploded in the early morning hours of April 26, 1986, a disaster of mammoth proportions unfolded...Battelle employees from corporate headquarters in Columbus, Ohio along with staff from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Wash., are working on the project...5/24

State & Regional

Nissan's Altima rollout comes with high hopes

(The Tennessean) This could finally be the midsize sedan that knocks the Toyota Camry from the spot it’s held for a decade as the best-selling car in America: the 2013 Nissan Altima. As Nissan rolled the first redesigned Altima off the assembly line Tuesday at its Smyrna assembly plant, company officials stopped short of predicting such a victory for the new model...5/16


U.S. Cuts Pakistan Aid

(AP) A Senate panel expressed its outrage over Pakistan's conviction of a doctor who helped the United States track down Osama bin Laden, voting to cut aid to Islamabad by $33 million -- $1 million for every year of the physician's 33-year sentence for high treason...5/25

East Tennessee

Mountain of a fight: TDOT uses novel engineering on I-75 project

(Knoxville News Sentinel) ...After five decades of weathering, the man-made slope that carries I-75 over the mountainous terrain of Campbell County had become saturated. Haddad said the gray shale material used to build the slope that basically bridged a ravine loses its shear strength with moisture...5/25

science & technology

DARPA and Craig Venter Fire Up Bio-Factories For Quick, Streamlined Genetic Engineering

(Popular Science) ...DARPA announced Living Foundries last summer, with a goal toward an engineering framework that could apply to any living thing. Under this program, genetic engineering would no longer be limited to modification of existing organisms...5/23

Physicists Set New Record for Graphene Solar Cell Efficiency

(Science Daily) Doping may be a no-no for athletes, but researchers in the University of Florida's physics department say it was key in getting unprecedented power conversion efficiency from a new graphene solar cell created in their lab...5/24

China to Spend $27 Billion on Emission Cuts, Renewables

(Scientific American) China's central government plans to spend 170 billion yuan ($27 billion) this year to promote energy conservation, emission reductions and renewable energy...5/24

Solar plane ends first leg of intercontinental bid

(PhysOrg) The Swiss sun-powered aircraft Solar Impulse landed safely in Madrid early Friday at the end of the first leg of its attempt at an intercontinental flight without using a drop of fuel...5/25

Other Stories

Iran nuclear talks: What world powers are offering, Iran isn't buying. Yet.

(CS Monitor) The parties to the Iran nuclear talks agreed only to reconvene, in Moscow next month. For now, any inducement short of easing sanctions is not enough to persuade Iran to relinquish its 20-percent-enriched uranium...5/24

World War II "Time Capsule" Fighter Found in Sahara

(National Geographic News) Recently discovered in Egypt by an oil-exploration team, a World War II fighter plane called "the aviation equivalent of Tutankhamun's tomb" bears the scars of 70 years in the Sahara desert—but is nevertheless considered to be in "time capsule" condition...5/24