7-Jan-2014 The play-by-play of energy conversion: Catching catalysts in action
Before catalysis unfolds in a laboratory, scientists painstakingly assemble the materials and spark a reaction. But many experimental techniques only capture the static details before and after the reaction. Now, researchers at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have demonstrated an unprecedented ability to peer into the dynamic, real-time reactions blazing along at scales spanning just billionths of a meter, producing a sort of play-by-play view of the chemistry in action.
16-Dec-2013 Small size enhances charge transfer in quantum dots
In a study just published in the journal Chemical Communications, scientists at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory, Stony Brook University, and Syracuse University show that shrinking the core of a quantum dot can enhance the ability of a surrounding polymer to extract electric charges generated in the dot by the absorption of light.
29-Oct-2013 NREL brings precision, savings to energy audits
An energy audit tool that more accurately pinpoints potential energy savings while potentially costing 35 percent to 75 percent less than traditional audits is set to hit the multi-billion-dollar energy retrofit industry next year.
17-Oct-2013 Architects and building engineers flock to NREL
Eight busloads of architects and mechanical engineers toured one of the world's largest net-zero-energy office building this summer at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory and came away inspired with new ideas for how to design and build beautiful, eco-friendly structures on a budget.
27-Aug-2013 Third consecutive IEEE Cherry Award for NREL
Keith Emery always had amazing computer programming skills, but he lacked that special gift for creating solar cells. So, 30 years ago he switched to something more in his wheelhouse -- characterizing and measuring the efficiency of solar cells and modules.
13-Aug-2013 Wood-boring gribbles intrigue researchers
Tiny wood borers known colloquially as gribbles make their own enzymes and use them to eat through docks in harbor towns, earning enmity from fishermen all around the world.
13-Aug-2013 Interns make robust contribution to NREL
They travel far and wide, from all corners of the country. They come from a diverse set of backgrounds, and they have very different plans for their futures. But the 54 student interns at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory this summer all have something in common -- a thirst for knowledge and a desire to apply what they have learned in school to real-world science in a state-of-the-art laboratory environment.
25-Jul-2013 Project Neptune: Specialized gas detection for nonproliferation
Sandia National Laboratories' Project Neptune aims to design a system capable of sensing, from among the loud signals of a lot of gases, the weak signals from specific gases that are signs of nuclear proliferation. The researchers believe their gas correlation technique will prove ideal for a simple, inexpensive sensor to monitor those few illusive gases.
14-Jun-2013 Detecting homemade explosives, not toothpaste
Sandia National Laboratories researchers want airports, border checkpoints and others to detect homemade explosives made with hydrogen peroxide without nabbing people whose toothpaste happens to contain peroxide.
7-Jun-2013 X-rays from NSLS reveal fuel cells in action
Wouldn't it be great to have a magical "energy box" that could convert a wide array of fuels to electricity with high efficiency and lower emissions? Solid oxide fuel cells show significant promise. But these solid-state energy-conversion devices are made of complex materials and they require specific conditions for optimal operation -- high temperatures, variable pressures, and electrical polarization.
29-Apr-2013 A solar booster shot for natural gas power plants
Natural gas power plants can use about 20 percent less fuel when the sun is shining by injecting solar energy into natural gas with a new system being developed by the Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
13-Mar-2013 Accelerating particles accelerates science -- with big benefits for society
Tackling the most challenging problems in accelerator science attracts the world's best and brightest to Brookhaven Lab. It's only natural that ideas and techniques born here take root in new research facilities around the world -- and spark a host of spin-off applications for industry, medicine, national security, and more.
29-Jan-2013 'Egg-cellent' world-record battery performance
SLAC and Stanford scientists have set a world record for energy storage, using a clever "yolk-shell" design to store five times more energy in the sulfur cathode of a rechargeable lithium-ion battery than is possible with today's commercial technology.
15-Jan-2013 Sandia airborne pods seek to trace nuclear bomb's origins
If a nuclear device were to unexpectedly detonate anywhere on Earth, the ensuing effort to find out who made the weapon probably would be led by aircraft rapidly collecting airborne radioactive particles for analysis.
18-Dec-2012 How cool are cool roofs? PPPL serves as the laboratory to find the answer
When Keith Rule and a team of interns walked onto the black and white roof of the main building of the US Department of Energy's Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory one sweltering day last summer, they could feel the temperature difference between the two different colored areas in the soles of their feet.
16-Nov-2012 Growth Forum offers networking nirvana
A greener detergent, a better solar-cell coating, an off-the-grid freezer -- clean-tech entrepreneurs pitched their ideas to money-men and -women in 10-minute bursts at the 2012 Industry Growth Forum last month in Denver.
The US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory held the 25th Industry Growth Forum, an annual event that features presentations from emerging clean energy companies, provocative panels led by thought leaders, one-on-one meetings, and organized networking opportunities.
The Department of Energy's Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time.