Thursday, October 14, 2010
ORNL in the News

Computational science: ...Error

(Nature News) A quarter of a century ago, most of the computing work done by scientists was relatively straightforward. But as computers and programming tools have grown more complex, scientists have hit a "steep learning curve", says James Hack, director of the US National Center for Computational Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. "The level of effort and skills needed to keep up aren't in the wheelhouse of the average scientist."...10/13

First set of Smart Grid standards submitted to energy regulators

(GCN) The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 gave the Energy Department the overall lead for Smart Grid development, and the department is funding additional research into security technology for the smart infrastructure. It recently awarded about $6.5 million to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory for research over the next three years on technology to ensure the reliability and security of the system....10/13

ORNL reactor returns after year's longest outage; lab official says missions accomplished

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The High Flux Isotope Reactor has returned to action, achieving full power Wednesday morning, according to Ron Crone, Oak Ridge National Laboratory's research reactors chief....10/13

State & Regional

Nuclear rises, coal recedes in TVA long-term plan

(Knoxville News Sentinel) TVA planners finishing up the analysis of a long-term energy resource plan favor a strategy that would expand nuclear capacity after 2018, increase emphasis on renewable energy sources and idle about 3,000 megawatts of coal-generated power capacity....10/14


Armenians face US health care scam charges

(BBC) US officials have charged 73 people over what is thought to be the largest ever attempt to defraud the country's medical insurance system....10/14

Officials in 50 states launch foreclosure probe

(Forbes) Officials in 50 states and the District of Columbia have launched a joint investigation into allegations that mortgage companies mishandled documents and broke laws in foreclosing on hundreds of thousands of homeowners....10/13



energy & science policy

EPA Rules That Fuel Can Contain More Ethanol

(NPR) Gasoline may soon contain more ethanol after an Environmental Protection Agency decision Wednesday. The EPA is now allowing up to 15 percent ethanol in gas, but only for cars made after 2007....10/14

Inside Energy Extra

10/13 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]
** EPA approves higher ethanol blend
** EDF seeks new partner for Md. reactor
** Greens press EPA on oil dispersants
** Divergent think tanks tout energy plan
** Utah, Ariz. most improved on efficiency

science & technology

Key component contract for Iter fusion reactor

(BBC) The contract has been signed that will lead to the production of the biggest component in the Iter fusion reactor. The multi-billion-euro facility being built in France will attempt to harvest energy by exploiting the same nuclear processes that power the Sun....10/14

When Procreation Is a Matter of Real Estate

(New York Times) The choice to have sex has everything to do with location, at least for tiny freshwater creatures called rotifers. Rotifers can reproduce sexually or asexually, and the decision to go one way or another depends on the animals' habitat...10/14

Misuse will drain Asia's water supply, experts say

(Washington Post) Around 80 percent of the region's water is used to irrigate crops, but much is used inefficiently. Many countries also lose large amounts of treated water through leakage in urban water supply systems, with losses estimated at about $9 billion a year....10/14 [Registration Required]

X-Shaped Space Thing Is Smashed-Up Asteroid

(Wired) Astronomers are now almost certain an x-shaped object discovered in the asteroid belt earlier this year is the first documented asteroid-to-asteroid collision....10/14