Tuesday, June 12, 2012
ORNL in the News

ORNL's Jaguar being phased out, but Titan could be No. 1

(Knoxville News Sentinel) A major upgrade will take place later this summer at the Cray "Jaguar" supercomputer, which will be renamed "Titan" after that work is completed, and it's possible that Oak Ridge National Laboratory could again have the world's fastest computer by sometime this fall...6/12

ORNL microscopy reveals workings behind promising inexpensive catalyst

(Innovations Report) In a search for an inexpensive alternative, a team including researchers from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory turned to carbon, one of the most abundant elements. Led by Stanford University's Hongjie Dai, the team developed a multi-walled carbon nanotube complex that consists of cylindrical sheets of carbon. ...6/12

DOE

Small worlds come into focus with new Sandia microscope

(Physorg.com) Paul Kotula recently told a colleague that Sandia’s new aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscope (AC-STEM) was like a Lamborghini with James Bond features...6/11

East Tennessee

University of Tennessee lecture series honors Victor Ashe

(AP) A new lecture series will bring past and present government leaders to the University of Tennessee. The ambassadorial and local government lecture series is named in honor of Victor H. Ashe, former Knoxville mayor and U.S. ambassador to Poland. It will be held at the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy...6/12

National

US halts talks with Pakistan on supply routes. Could ties get any worse?

(CS Monitor) A US negotiating team will leave Pakistan without an agreement on the routes, the Pentagon says. Both sides stand to gain from a deal, but 'the over-all crisis in the relationship won out.'...6/11

Fed: Americans’ wealth dropped 40 percent

(Washington Post) The net worth of the American family has fallen to its lowest level in two decades, according to government data released Monday, driven by a more than 40 percent drop in their stakes in their homes...6/11

 

energy & science policy

NASA scientists fight budget cuts with cupcakes

(Nature) It has come to this: planetary scientists across the United States hawked baked goods to the public on Saturday in an effort to drum up awareness of their field’s dwindling financial support. They were protesting plans in US President Barack Obama's 2013 budget request to cut 21% from NASA's planetary-science budget, and 38% from its Mars projects...6/11

Unsuccessful House Amendment to Transfer Funding from DOE Energy Program to Office of Science

(AIP) During the House of Representative’s recent consideration of the FY 2013 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill, an amendment was offered by Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL) to reduce funding for the Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Program...6/11

House Discussion on National Ignition Facility

(AIP) The House of Representatives started its consideration of H.R. 5325, the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act for FY 2013, on May 31. On June 6 the bill passed by a vote of 255-165. This and subsequent FYIs will excerpt sections of this debate of interest to the physics community...6/8

U.S. Daily Oil Production At Highest Level Since 1998

(Scientific American) United States oil production is on the rise. In the first quarter of 2012, average domestic crude oil production topped 6 million barrels per day (bbl/day)...6/11

science & technology

Quantum Computers Move Closer to Reality

(Science Daily) The quantum computer is a futuristic machine that could operate at speeds even more mind-boggling than the world's fastest super-computers...6/7

Shaky Battery Maker Claims a Breakthrough

(NY Times) Lauded during a visit by President Obama, A123 Systems was supposed to be a centerpiece of his administration’s effort to use $2 billion in government subsidies to jump-start production of sophisticated electric batteries in the United States...6/11

Other Stories

Largest 'Dark Sky' Reserve Named

(Discovery News) A huge portion of New Zealand's South Island has been designated as the world's largest International Dark Sky Reserve, making it one of the best places for stargazing on the globe...6/11