Friday, July 13, 2013
ORNL in the News

DOE approves $511M plan to dispose of U-233

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge office has received approval to move forward with a new plan to process stocks of fissile uranium-233 stored at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and complete a long-running project that's now expected to cost $511 million...7/13

NIST releases test framework for upgrading smart electrical meters

(Innovations Report) Next-generation "smart" electrical meters for residential and commercial buildings will have computerized operating systems just as laptops or mobile devices do..."We will be working with the Department of Energy, including Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and also Electrosoft Services Inc., to utilize an existing upgrade management system that ORNL developed, and that now NIST can test,"...7/12

DOE

Energy Department Announces New ARPA-E Projects to Advance Innovative Natural Gas Vehicle Technologies

(Energy.gov) U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman today announced 13 new cutting-edge research projects that will receive a total of $30 million to find new ways of harnessing America’s abundant natural gas supplies for cars and trucks and expand the use of natural gas as a vehicle fuel...7/12

'Ultra-secure' wireless at a nuclear weapons plant

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The project has been under way for a while to install "ultra-secure" wireless at the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant, and a federal spokesman said work has now been completed at the Jack Case Center -- the largest office complex and administrative hub at the site -- and the New Hope Center, which includes the visitor center, history museum and some lab space...7/12

DOE User Facilities Praised at House Science Committee Hearing

(AIP) A June 21 hearing of the House Science, Space, and Technology’s Subcommittee on Energy and Environment demonstrated strong support for the Department of Energy’s user facilities on both sides of the witness table and both ends of the dais...7/12

Manhattan Project park bill heading for congressional vote

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Legislation to establish a Manhattan Project National Historical Park that would include Oak Ridge National Laboratory is heading to the floor of the U.S. House for approval...7/12

National

Can Tech-Driven U.S. Energy Boom Survive Challenges?

(Investor's Business Daily) The world may be facing an era of cheap and plentiful energy, and the U.S. lies at the center of the potential boon to the global economy, thanks to technology and a bit of luck. But the road faces serious hurdles, including environmental worries driving political opposition...7/12

East Tennessee

UT unveils solar-powered, free-standing charging station

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The University of Tennessee unveiled a "green" structure Thursday morning that will serve as a safe spot, gathering place and campus charging station for laptops and phones...7/13

State & Regional

Tennessee tax revenue soars above estimates

(Commercial Appeal) Tennessee's state tax revenues are up over half a billion dollars above original estimates for the first 11 months of the fiscal year, state finance officials reported Wednesday...7/12s

energy & science policy

Research and Science Education Subcommittee Examines Challenges Faced by Research Universities

(AIP) The House Science Committee’s Research and Science Education Subcommittee heard from representatives of the research university community in a June 27 hearing...7/12

The Natural Gas Boom: Doing More Harm Than Good?

(NPR) The United States is in the midst of a natural gas boom — about 200,000 gas wells have been drilled in the past decade. The boom has been fueled by the use of hydraulic fracturing — or fracking — which involves pumping a mixture of water and chemicals into the ground to get access to the gas...7/12

science & technology

How Stereotypes Can Drive Women To Quit Science

(NPR) Walk into any tech company or university math department, and you'll likely see a gender disparity: Fewer women than men seem to go into fields involving science, engineering, technology and mathematics...7/12

Plasma’s Not Yet Perfect, But Panasonic Is Doing It Best

(Wired News) LCD or plasma? By now the question feels as quaint as “Coke or Pepsi?” Plasmas consume more energy, have shorter lifespans, and suffer from burn-in issues, so it’s an easy choice. Right?...7/13

Sky Hive Gives Bees an Urban Dwelling

(Discovery News) Urban beekeepers often keep their operations on the downlow for fear of violating local ordinances, but a new adjustable-height hive prototype being tested in Europe could mean sweet success all-around. Meet the "Sky Hive."...7/12

Team creates new tech for complex micro structures for use in sensors, other apps

(PhysOrg) University of Maryland Chemistry Professor John Fourkas and his research group have developed new materials and nanofabrication techniques for building miniaturized versions of components needed for medical diagnostics, sensors and other applications...7/13

Other Stories

Why Tesla is Beating GM, Ford and Toyota - Electric Cars

(Forbes) Sales expectations are not good for U.S. auto companies. Automakers are resorting to fairly radical promotional programs to spur sales...7/11

Al-Qaida Arm In Yemen Flexes Its Muscles In Nigeria

(NPR) Two Nigerian men have been charged with accepting thousands of dollars from al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula to recruit potential terrorists in Nigeria. U.S. officials are watching closely because it suggests that al-Qaida's most aggressive affiliate is seeking to boost its presence in Africa...7/12