Monday, October 27, 2014
ORNL in the News

Which alternative fuel best fits the way you drive?

(Detroit Free Press) A little research can save you money if you're trying to figure out which vehicle and fuel — gasoline, electric, diesel, hybrid, whatever — are best for your budget..."With a lot of advanced technology vehicles, the answer to what's right for you comes down to how you drive," said Bob Boundy, a researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. Boundy's work includes updating the cost calculators for vehicles and fuels on www.fueleconomy.gov...10/26

inverters3D Printing Radically Improves Power Inverter Design

(Engineering.com) Using 3-D printing and novel semiconductors, researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have created a power inverter that could make electric vehicles lighter, more powerful and more efficient...10/23

UT Gets $2.73 Million to Keep Working on DataONE Science Info Project

(Tennessee Today) UT’s College of Communication and Information will receive $2.73 million over the next five years as part of a $15 million accomplishment-based renewal of the National Science Foundation’s DataONE project...Bruce Wilson, who holds a joint appointment with UT and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and UT research associate Mike Frame are also part of the Phase II team...10/23

Science and Technology

BelchatowEU leaders hammer out landmark climate deal

(Nature News) In a move which analysts hope will liven up international climate policy efforts, European Union (EU) leaders have agreed on a set of mid-term climate and energy targets for the world’s third-largest economic bloc...10/24

Breakthrough in molecular electronics paves the way for DNA-based computer circuits in the future

(PhysOrg) In a paper published today in Nature Nanotechnology, an international group of scientists announced the most significant breakthrough in a decade toward developing DNA-based electrical circuits...10/27

Energy and Science Policy

The U.S. still spends more on space than every other country—combined

(The Washington Post) Ever since NASA retired its last space shuttle in 2011, American space travel has taken a back seat to news of growing Chinese space ambitions, Indian Mars missions, Iranian space chimps, and Russian space geckos. But make no mistake, the United States is still the global powerhouse in space spending...10/25

NRC Chairman to Resign on January 1

(AIP) Allison Macfarlane, Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, announced yesterday that she will resign from her position on January 1, 2015...10/22

DOE

Solar PanelsEnergy Department Announces $53 Million to Drive Innovation, Cut Cost of Solar Power

(Breaking Energy) Building on President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to cut carbon pollution and continue U.S. leadership in clean energy innovation, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz today announced more than $53 million for 40 innovative research and development (R&D) projects that aim to drive down the cost of solar energy...10/27

Y-12 opens new training facility

(WBIR) Y-12 celebrated the opening of its new National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Alarm Response Training Academy (ART) on Thursday. The company's old training facility was flooded last winter after a water main broke...10/23

Pantex marks warhead progress

(Amarillo Globe News) Pantex Plant and other nuclear weapons facilities reached the halfway point in the production phase of a program to extend the service life of submarine-launched nuclear warheads for decades, officials said Thursday...10/23

Anne HarringtonA few questions for NNSA’s Anne Harrington about dealing with nuclear threats

(The Knoxville News Sentinel) NNSA Deputy Administrator Anne Harrington was at Y-12 last Thursday, and before and after the staged events I had a couple of opportunities to talk with Harrington and ask her a few questions about non-proliferation and related issues...10/26

CNS exec on cost cuts: ‘I think we’re doing well’

(The Knoxville News Sentinel) At this week's grand opening of a new training facility at Y-12, I had a chance to talk briefly with Morgan Smith, the chief operating officer for Consolidated Nuclear Security, the government's managing contractor for Y-12 and Pantex...10/24

Local and State

MKAA board moves on Oak Ridge airport plan

(The Daily Times) It wasn’t exactly a milestone achieved, but the Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority removed a technical hiccup Wednesday that could have been a barrier in the way of a planned general aviation airport in Oak Ridge...10/23

Cheaper fuel lets TVA cut its rates

(Chattanooga Times Free Press) ...The 2.6 percent cut in electric rates next month from the drop in fuel costs more than offsets the 1.5 percent wholesale rate increase adopted this month as part of TVA's fiscal 2015 budget. Since last winter when cold temperatures and rising gas prices spiked TVA generation costs, the fuel-cost portion of TVA bills has dropped nearly 30 percent, cutting the overall wholesale rate charged by TVA by about 9 percent from its April peak...10/22