Friday, August 6, 2010
ORNL in the News

Testing the doubly magic character of tin-132

(Physics Today) Adding an extra neutron to a nucleus with magic numbers of both neutrons and protons, and watching how it settles in, tests the shell model and can help elucidate the creation of heavy elements in supernovae. So why go to all the trouble of examining the states into which a neutron added to 132Sn falls? "Because, as has become clear in recent years, some doubly magic nuclei are more magic than others," explains theorist Witold Nazarewicz, scientific director of the Holifeld facility....8/1

St. Lucie officials, residents hopeful agreement with Tennessee lab creates jobs

(TC Palm) The agreement last week between local Florida officials and Oak Ridge National Laboratory could be the stimulus needed to turn St. Lucie County's green energy training program into employment opportunities....8/5

Court backs DOE's override on cleanup project

(Knoxville News Sentinel) A Federal Claims Court has upheld DOE's decision to continue a nuclear cleanup project at ORNL, despite an ongoing protest from a losing bidder on the project....8/5

The secret city: Oak Ridge, Tennessee

(The Observer News) The city of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, where the uranium for this first bomb was made, is called "The Secret City." Today there is the impressive American Museum of Science and Energy telling the story of the city, its people and the race to produce fuel for "the bomb," even though the people there literally had no idea of what they were working on. What happened to the enriched uranium as it was produced at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory? Small amounts were put in containers, locked in a special briefcase and handcuffed to the wrist of an Army lieutenant who then took a train to Chicago where he switched to another train headed for Los Alamos, NM. Apparently the amount being transported at any one time was not thought large enough to have any effect on the messenger....8/5

Knoxville-Oak Ridge Innovation Valley Grows Business Parks, Expands Jobs

(PR Newswire) A flurry of new jobs, corporate expansions and business construction indicates a surge in economic momentum across the Knoxville-Oak Ridge Innovation Valley of East Tennessee. Collaboration between the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory is creating employment and capital investment for the region....8/5


Secretary Chu Announces 150 Students to Receive Graduate Fellowships in Science, Mathematics and Engineering

(DOE Press Release) Underscoring the Obama Administration's commitment to bolstering science education, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced today that 150 students have been selected to receive graduate fellowship awards as part of a new Department of Energy Graduate Fellowship program....8/5

Secretary Chu Announces FutureGen 2.0

(DOE Press Release) U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin announced the awarding of $1 billion in Recovery Act funding to the FutureGen Alliance, Ameren Energy Resources, Babcock & Wilcox, and Air Liquide Process & Costruction, Inc. to build FutureGen 2.0, a clean coal repowering program and carbon dioxide (CO2) storage network....8/5


Senate confirms Elena Kagan's nomination to Supreme Court

(Washington Post) The Senate confirmed U.S. Solicitor General Elena Kagan on Thursday as the 112th justice to the Supreme Court, making her the fourth woman to sit on the court....8/6 [Registration Required]

State & Regional

Bill Haslam's romp sets up race vs. Mike McWherter

(Tennessean) Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam claimed victory in the Republican gubernatorial primary Thursday night, setting up a November face-off with Jackson beer distributor Mike McWherter. Haslam trounced U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp and Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey after a spirited primary in which the other candidates repeatedly hit Haslam over his family's chain of truck stops, Pilot Travel Centers LLC, and his record as mayor of Knoxville....8/6



energy & science policy

Much Gulf Oil Remains, Deeply Hidden and Under Beaches

(National Geographic) As BP finishes pumping cement into the damaged Deepwater Horizon wellhead Thursday, some scientists are taking issue with a new U.S. government report that says the "vast majority" of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill has been taken care of by nature and "robust" cleanup efforts....8/5

science & technology

Oil Spill Cleanup Workers Include Many Very, Very Small Ones

(New York Times) The oil-hungry bacterium Alcanivorax and fellow microbes are breaking down a significant amount of the oil that gushed into the environment from BP's runaway well, scientists say....8/4

Disease 'killed one million bats'

(BBC News) A disease known as white-nose syndrome has killed approximately one million little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) in North America, say scientists. The research team report in the journal Science that this could drive the species to extinction in the north-eastern US in as little as 16 years....8/5

Genetically Modified Canola 'Escapes' Farm Fields

(NPR) Genetically modified crops are commonplace in fields across the United States, but a new study suggests that some plants have spread into the wild. A survey of North Dakota has turned up hundreds of genetically modified canola plants growing along roads across the state....8/6

Moon Water Dreams Evaporate

(Wired) A new study suggests that, contrary to recent work, the lunar interior is as bone-dry as scientists thought 40 years ago, when NASA astronauts lugged home the first moon rocks. sciencenewsNew analyses of chlorine in those rocks, published Aug. 5 in Science, indicate that the moon contains just one–ten-thousandth to one–hundred-thousandth the water that the Earth's interior does....8/6

The Secret of Life May Be As Simple As What Happens Between the Sheets -- Mica Sheets

(PhysOrg) That age-old question, "where did life on Earth start?" now has a new answer. If the life between the mica sheets hypothesis is correct, life would have originated between sheets of mica that were layered like the pages in a book....8/6

Other Stories

Wrightsville Beach woman recalls top-secret atomic bomb project

(Wilmington [N. C.] Star-News) Jean Mobley of Wrightsville Beach was present at the creation of nuclear warfare – and never realized it. Mobley, 89, was married to William N. "Bill" Mobley, a young engineer working on the Manhattan Project at Oak Ridge, Tenn., and later at the Hanford Works near Richland, Wash....8/5