Monday, November 21, 2011
ORNL in the News

ORNL like you've never seen it before

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Awards Night, 2011...11/20

Greenhouse gases, water vapor and you

(Los Angeles Times) Several readers pointed out an omission in last week’s post about the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s release of its Annual Greenhouse Gas Index, which showed that man-made gases that contribute to global warming continued a steady rise...Tom Boden, director of the U.S. Energy Department’s Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, acknowledges in an email: “Folks are right when they state water vapor is a powerful greenhouse gas and not routinely measured directly in the atmosphere."...11/18

Lab's behavioral system can catch insider threats

(GCN) Researchers at the Energy Department’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory are developing a tool to identify malicious insiders and stop them from sending sensitive information outside the enterprise. The system, which is being tested in a lab environment, uses a host-based agent to “learn” a user’s behavior and to look for anomalous behavior or other signatures, said computer scientist and project leader Justin Beaver. “It turns out there is a lot of data on each host you can leverage if you know what to look for,” Beaver said...11/17

ORNL SC11Jaguar #3, Kraken #11, Gaea #20 on TOP500

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The newest TOP500 list, of which UT's Jack Dongarra is a key formulator, was released this week in conjunction with the SC11 conference being held in Seattle, and ORNL's Jaguar (which is being transformed into a 10-petaflops-or-better machine known as Titan) is still No. 3 on the list. Japan's 'K Computer' heads the list...11/20


Ted Sherry talks about his decision to leave Y-12, federal service

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Ted Sherry, the National Nuclear Security Administration's on-site manager at the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant for the past five years, said he usually a just-the-facts kind of guy...11/17

State & Regional

Pay freeze for TVA employees, but CEO up $352,000

(USA Today) One day after the Tennessee Valley Authority board extended a pay freeze for a second year, a report shows TVA President and CEO Tom Kilgore's compensation increased by $352,000 in fiscal 2011, to $3.95 million. A TVA filing Friday with the Securities and Exchange Commission shows compensation increases for all five of its top executives...11/18

TennCare fears loss of federal fees

(Tennessean) The funding mechanism that rescued TennCare is in the deficit reduction crosshairs, creating a billion-dollar worry for Tennessee hospitals that could turn into real health-care woes for the state’s poorest residents...11/21


Debt supercommittee members brace for failure

(Washington Post) The congressional “supercommittee” stumbled its way toward failure Sunday, with final staff-level discussions focusing mostly on how the panel should publicly admit that lawmakers could not meet their mandate of shaving $1.2 trillion from the federal debt...11/20

Contractors Claim Administration Pressed to 'Soften' Job-Loss Estimates From Mining Rule

(Fox News) The Obama administration pressured analysts to change an environmental review to reflect fewer job losses from a proposed regulation, the contractors who worked on the review testified Friday...11/18

NYC mayor: Al-Qaida sympathizer arrested in bomb plot

(WBIR) Authorities have arrested an alleged Al-Qaida sympathizer on charges of plotting to bomb various New York City locations, including police and post offices, and targeting U.S. troops returning home from overseas...11/20

energy & science policy

FY 2012 National Science Foundation Appropriations Bill Signed Into Law

(AIP) Yesterday the House and Senate passed H.R. 2112, providing funding for the National Science Foundation.  The President signed this appropriations bill into law today.  Accompanying this bill is the Joint Explanatory Statement of the Committee of Conference, which is the second section of House Report 112-284...11/18

Inside Energy Extra

11/18 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]

  • Solar plant opens at Brookhaven lab
  • Kirk urges restarting Yucca Mt. project
  • House Repubs push drilling to fund roads
  • Court backs Interior's Wyo. gas plans
  • Navy destroyer sails on fuel blend

science & technology

Neuroscience: Neanderthals in mind

(Nature)...We have learned much about Neanderthals in the past 150 years. They were powerfully built and top carnivores. Their stone tools are found across Eurasia. We know from their genome sequence that the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and ourselves lived some half a million years ago. They became extinct in southern Spain as recently as 30,000 years ago...11/17

Europa Lake"Great Lakes" Discovered on Jupiter Moon?

Hidden inside the thick, icy crust of Jupiter's moon Europa may be a giant saltwater body equal to the Great Lakes (map) combined, NASA announced today. Lying about 1.9 miles (3 kilometers) from the surface, the ice-trapped lake may represent the newest potentially habitable environment in the solar system—and one of the best prospects for the search for life beyond Earth...11/16

Other Stories

Pentagon successfully tests hypersonic flying bomb

(PhysOrg) The Pentagon on Thursday held a successful test flight of a flying bomb that travels faster than the speed of sound and will give military planners the ability to strike targets anywhere in the world in less than a hour...11/17

Out there

DrinkingEU bans claim that water can prevent dehydration

(Telegraph) EU officials concluded that, following a three-year investigation, there was no evidence to prove the previously undisputed fact. Producers of bottled water are now forbidden by law from making the claim and will face a two-year jail sentence if they defy the edict, which comes into force in the UK next month. Last night, critics claimed the EU was at odds with both science and common sense. Conservative MEP Roger Helmer said: “This is stupidity writ large.”...11/18