Monday, July 28, 2014
ORNL in the News

Oxide SurfacesORNL study reveals new characteristics of complex oxide surfaces

(eScience News) A novel combination of microscopy and data processing has given researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory an unprecedented look at the surface of a material known for its unusual physical and electrochemical properties. The research team led by ORNL's Zheng Gai examined how oxygen affects the surface of a perovskite manganite, a complex material that exhibits dramatic magnetic and electronic behavior....7/25

Lab rolls out ideas for future vehicles

(Detroit Free Press) Nestled in the rolling Tennessee hills and forests, the secretive lab that developed power for the Manhattan Project is working to change the auto industry and reduce U.S. dependence on foreign fuel....7/27

Popular Wireless Home Alarms Can Be Hacked from Afar

(Softpedia) ...Logan Lamb, security researcher at Oak Ridge National Lab, conducted his work separately from the government and found top-selling alarm system brands to be vulnerable to remote hijacking of the signal that triggers the alert. Testing more than a dozen of similar devices in Australia, Silvio Cesare found that they were plagued by the same flaw...7/24

Science & Technology

NASA Needs $460 Million to Start New Rocket System by 2017

(Autoworld News) There is a good chance that NASA's Space Launch System will miss its planned December test flight, according to a report announced by the Government Accountability Office. Federal auditors have said that NASA does not have enough money to start its new rocket system of $13 billion by the end of 2017, as previously planned...7/25

Plasma PhysicsPlasma physics: The fusion upstarts

(Nature News) To reach one of the world's most secretive nuclear-fusion companies, visitors must wind their way through a suburban office park at the foot of the Santa Ana Mountains, just east of Irvine, California, until they pull up outside the large but unmarked headquarters of Tri Alpha Energy...7/23

Energy and Science Policy

Good Hearing for ITER Before House Science Subcommittee

(AIP) “Fusion energy is the sort of high-risk, high-reward research that will benefit future generations if we are bold enough to pursue it,” said House Science, Space and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) at a recent hearing on the ITER fusion program...7/25

As Fiery Accidents Pile Up, U.S. Proposes New Rules for Oil Trains

(National Geographic) After a string of fiery oil train accidents in recent months, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) on Wednesday proposed new rules seeking to address safety concerns over the increasing use of rail to transport crude oil...7/23


Hundreds of Oak Ridge guards to get back pay

(The Knoxville News Sentinel) Hundreds of Oak Ridge security guards will receive back pay for overtime as a result of a settlement in the 2012 federal lawsuit filed against G4S Government Solutions, also known as Wackenhut Services, the government’s former security contractor at the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant and Oak Ridge National Laboratory....7/24

DOE official: MOX is ‘preferred solution’

(Aiken Standard) A high-ranking official in the Energy Department said the Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication facility, or MOX, under construction at the Savannah River Site is the “preferred solution” to dispose of weapons-grade plutonium if sustained funding is available over time, despite the federal government’s efforts to place the project in a cold stand-by...7/26

State and local

ASMEStill a draw, but ‘tired': Future of Oak Ridge museum contemplated

(The Knoxville News Sentinel) The federal spigot for funding an Oak Ridge landmark is being tightened, and it's time for the community to start making alternative plans for its future. That was the message more than 100 people received Thursday during the first of several planned community meetings on the fate of the 65-year-old American Museum of Science and Energy...7/25

Watts Bar HousingTVA to assemble Watts Bar 2 nuclear reactor this week

(WBIR) The parts are in place and ready to assemble the new reactor at the TVA Watts Bar nuclear power plant. TVA expects assembly of the Watts Bar 2 reactor to begin in the next few days...7/24

Haslam: Tennessee not told about immigrant kids

(The Daily Times) In a letter to President Barack Obama, Gov. Bill Haslam says his administration should have been informed about the placement of 760 unaccompanied immigrant children in Tennessee...7/27

Fracking in Tennessee questioned once again

(The Daily Beacon) In the 2000s, Oklahoma averaged fewer than 50 earthquakes per year of magnitude 3.0 or greater. Through June 15 of this year, the state has experienced 190 such earthquakes. Why? The wastewater disposal process for fracking wells, according to the July 4 issue of Science Magazine...7/24