Public Release: 5-Apr-2016 Global gathering addresses PV role in energy prosperity and climate change mitigation
Scientists from the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory, along with their counterparts from solar energy research institutes in Germany and Japan, gathered recently to discuss the future of photovoltaics and assess its contributions to increasing global prosperity, energy security and mitigation of climate change.
Public Release: 5-Apr-2016 Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, April 2016
This tip sheet includes: ORNL researchers focus on minimizing impact of natural and man-made disasters hit; Aberrated probes helping to detect magnetic properties in materials; Thermoelectric heat pump dryer potentially uses 40 percent less energy; ORNL researchers discover structures designed to monitor fish movement are potential obstacles.
Public Release: 5-Apr-2016 NREL raises rooftop photovoltaic technical potential estimate
Analysts at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory have used detailed light detection and ranging data for 128 cities nationwide, along with improved data analysis methods and simulation tools, to update its estimate of total US technical potential for rooftop photovoltaic systems. The analysis reveals a technical potential of 1,118 gigawatts of capacity and 1,432 terawatt-hours of annual energy generation, equivalent to 39 percent of the nation's electricity sales.
Public Release: 5-Apr-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Insulator-superconductor transition of copper-oxide compound studied in fine detail
Using a highly controlled deposition technique, scientists from the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory have synthesized ultrathin films containing multiple samples of a copper-oxide compound to study the compound's electronic behavior at near absolute zero, or minus 459 degrees Fahrenheit. Their study revealed that fluctuations in the distribution of electrical charges at near-absolute-zero temperature compete with superconductivity.
US Department of Energy Office of Science
Public Release: 4-Apr-2016
Nature Nanotechnology Tiny tubes move into the fast lane
For the first time, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory researchers have shown that carbon nanotubes as small as eight-tenths of a nanometer in diameter can transport protons faster than bulk water, by an order of magnitude.
Public Release: 4-Apr-2016 Major upgrade will boost power of world's brightest X-ray laser
Construction begins today on a major upgrade to a unique X-ray laser at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. The project will add a second X-ray laser beam that's 10,000 times brighter, on average, than the first one and fires 8,000 times faster, up to a million pulses per second.
Public Release: 1-Apr-2016
Nature Communications Low-cost and lightweight
For the first time, researchers have been able to see what makes this titanium alloy so strong -- and then make it stronger.
US Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Office -- Propulsion Materials Program
Public Release: 1-Apr-2016
Nature Communications X-rays reveal how a solar cell gets its silver stripes
The silver electrical contacts that carry electricity out of about 90 percent of the solar modules on the market are also one of their most expensive parts. Now scientists from two Department of Energy national laboratories have used X-rays to observe exactly how those contacts form during manufacturing.
Public Release: 30-Mar-2016
Nature Communications Revealing the fluctuations of flexible DNA in 3-D
Scientists have captured the first high-resolution 3-D images from individual double-helix DNA segments attached to gold nanoparticles, which could aid in the use of DNA segments as building blocks for molecular devices that function as nanoscale drug-delivery systems, markers for biological research, and components for electronic devices.
Public Release: 29-Mar-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Holistic data analysis and modeling poised to transform protein X-ray crystallography
A new 3-D modeling and data-extraction technique is about to transform the field of X-ray crystallography, with potential benefits for both the pharmaceutical industry and structural biology. A paper this week in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences describes the improved blending of experimentation and computer modeling, extracting valuable information from diffuse, previously discarded data.
Public Release: 29-Mar-2016 City resilience: Sandia analyzes effects of rising sea levels in Norfolk
Sandia National Laboratories created an Urban Resilience Analysis Process to help cities become more resilient. The process is a holistic framework that includes Sandia's critical infrastructure modeling and simulation tools, risk consequence assessment and systems analysis expertise to show cities the most effective investments they can make to become more resilient.
Public Release: 25-Mar-2016 Smaller. Cheaper. Better.
A Sandia-led team has developed a way to make a magnetic material that could lead to lighter and smaller, cheaper and better-performing high-frequency transformers, needed for more flexible energy storage systems and widespread adoption of renewable energy.
DOE/Energy Storage Program, Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability
Public Release: 22-Mar-2016
Advanced Functional Materials ORNL researchers invent tougher plastic with 50 percent renewable content
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have made a better thermoplastic by replacing styrene with lignin, a brittle, rigid polymer that, with cellulose, forms the woody cell walls of plants. In doing so, they have invented a solvent-free production process that interconnects equal parts of nanoscale lignin dispersed in a synthetic rubber matrix to produce a meltable, moldable, ductile material that's at least ten times tougher than ABS, a common thermoplastic.
ORNL's Technology Innovation Program
Public Release: 22-Mar-2016 NREL's capabilities boost a wide range of innovative ARPA-E research
The Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) will play key roles in a variety of projects recently funded by the Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). NREL's innovative approaches have received five awards across three different ARPA-E programs for advancing transformational technologies to generate, store, and use energy more efficiently, at lower costs and with reduced emissions.
Public Release: 21-Mar-2016
ACS Nano ORNL-NIST team explores nanoscale objects and processes with microwave microscopy
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the National Institute of Standards and Technology have demonstrated a nondestructive way to observe nanoscale objects and processes in conditions simulating their normal operating environments. Their novel approach combines ultrathin membranes with microwaves and a scanning probe.
Department of Energy Office of Science, National Institute of Standards and Technology
Public Release: 21-Mar-2016
Journal of Materials Chemistry A Pumping up energy storage with metal oxides
Material scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have found certain metal oxides increase capacity and improve cycling performance in lithium-ion batteries.
Public Release: 21-Mar-2016
Analytical Chemistry Lighting up disease-carrying mosquitoes
Robert Meagher, a chemical engineer at Sandia National Laboratories, has developed a simple technique for simultaneously detecting RNA from West Nile and chikungunya virus in samples from mosquitoes. He is now working to add the ability to screen for Zika virus.
Public Release: 17-Mar-2016
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces Replacement for silicon devices looms big with ORNL discovery
Two-dimensional electronic devices could inch closer to their ultimate promise of low power, high efficiency and mechanical flexibility with a processing technique developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Public Release: 15-Mar-2016
ACS Photonics New ORNL method could unleash solar power potential
New ORNL measurement and data analysis techniques could provide insight into performance-robbing flaws in crystalline structures, ultimately improving the performance of solar cells.
Public Release: 11-Mar-2016
Nature Communications New fuel cell design powered by graphene-wrapped nanocrystals
Researchers at Berkeley Lab have developed a new materials recipe for a battery-like hydrogen fuel cell that shields the nanocrystals from oxygen, moisture and contaminants while pushing its performance forward in key areas.
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.