Public Release: 14-Aug-2017 Balloons and drones and clouds; oh, my!
Last week, researchers at Sandia National Laboratories flew a tethered balloon and an unmanned aerial system, colloquially known as a drone, together for the first time to get Arctic atmospheric temperatures with better location control than ever before.
Public Release: 14-Aug-2017 PNNL scientist Jiwen Fan receives DOE Early Career Research award
Jiwen Fan of the Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has been selected to receive a 2017 Early Career Research Program award from the U.S. Department of Energy. Fan will use the award to study severe thunderstorms in the central United States - storms that produce large hail, damaging winds, tornadoes, and torrential rainfall.
U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science
Public Release: 11-Aug-2017
Ecological Informatics Night vision for bird- & bat-friendly offshore wind power
The ThermalTracker software analyzes video with night vision, the same technology that helps soldiers see in the dark, to help birds and bats near offshore wind turbines.
Department of Energy
Public Release: 10-Aug-2017 Four ORNL researchers receive DOE early career funding awards
Four Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers specializing in nuclear physics, fusion energy, advanced materials and environmental science are among 59 recipients of Department of Energy's Office of Science Early Career Research Program awards.
Department of Energy's Office of Science
Public Release: 9-Aug-2017
Nature Biotechnology Defining standards for genomes from uncultivated microorganisms
As genomic data production has ramped up over the past two decades and is being generated on various platforms around the world, scientists have worked together to establish definitions for terms and data collection standards that apply across the board. In Nature Biotechnology, an international team led by DOE JGI researchers has developed standards for the minimum metadata to be supplied with single amplified genomes and metagenome-assembled genomes submitted to public databases.
DOE/Office of Science
Public Release: 7-Aug-2017 The good, the bad and the algae
Sandia National Laboratories is testing whether one of California's largest and most polluted lakes can transform into one of its most productive and profitable. Southern California's 350-square-mile Salton Sea has well-documented problems related to elevated levels of nitrogen and phosphorus from agricultural runoff. Sandia intends to harness algae's penchant for prolific growth to clean up these pollutants and stop harmful algae blooms while creating a renewable, domestic source of fuel.
Public Release: 24-Jul-2017
Weather and Climate Extremes 'Hindcasting' study investigates the extreme 2013 Colorado flood
Using a publicly available climate model, Berkeley Lab researchers 'hindcast' the conditions that led to the Sept. 9-16, 2013 flooding around Boulder, Colo. and found that climate change attributed to human activity made the storm much more severe than would otherwise have occurred.
Public Release: 19-Jul-2017 PNNL scientist Ruby Leung appointed a Battelle Fellow
Ruby Leung of the Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has been named a Battelle Fellow -- the highest recognition from Battelle for leadership and accomplishment in science.
Public Release: 18-Jul-2017 3-D models help scientists gauge flood impact
Using one of the world's most powerful supercomputers, a University of Iowa team performed one of the first highly resolved, 3-D, volume-of-fluid Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulations of a dam break in a natural environment. The simulation allowed the team to map precise water levels for actual flood events over time.
Public Release: 18-Jul-2017
Nature Climate Change Titan simulations show importance of close 2-way coupling between human and Earth systems
By using supercomputers such as the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility's Titan, a large multidisciplinary team of scientists developed a new integrated climate model designed to reduce uncertainties in future climate predictions as it bridges Earth systems with energy and economic models and large-scale human impact data.
Public Release: 12-Jul-2017 Algae production research gets boost at Los Alamos
Today, the US Department of Energy (DOE) announced the selection of three projects to receive up to $8 million, aimed at reducing the costs of producing algal biofuels and bioproducts.
Public Release: 5-Jul-2017
Nature Climate Change Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, July 2017
ORNL-led team integrates Earth systems with human impact data for climate predictions with fewer uncertainties; ORNL to develop secure platform to analyze large health datasets for Dept. of Veterans Affairs; ORNL neutrons used to resolve debate over origins of metallic glass behavior; ORNL studies 3-D printing materials that crosslink without heat; New web-based calculator by ORNL shows energy-savings potential of airtight buildings; ORNL combines 3-D printing with casting to produce multi-material, damage-tolerant components.
Department of Energy
Public Release: 5-Jul-2017
The Plant Cell A whole-genome sequenced rice mutant resource for the study of biofuel feedstocks
Researchers at the DOE Joint BioEnergy Institute, in collaboration with the Joint Genome Institute, are reporting the first whole-genome sequence of a mutant population of Kitaake, a model variety of rice. Their high-density, high-resolution catalog of mutations facilitates the discovery of novel genes and functional elements that control diverse biological pathways.
US Department of Energy, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation
Public Release: 29-Jun-2017
Nature Communications Researchers ID new mechanism for keeping DNA protein in line
Electrostatic forces known as phosphate steering help guide the actions of an enzyme called FEN1 that is critical in DNA replication and repair, finds a new study led by Berkeley Lab researchers. The findings help explain how FEN1 distinguishes which strands of DNA to target, revealing key details about a vital process in healthy cells as well as providing new directions for cancer treatment research.
NIH/National Cancer Institute, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology
Public Release: 28-Jun-2017
Scientific Reports What's on your skin? Archaea, that's what
It turns out your skin is crawling with single-celled microorganisms -- and they're not just bacteria. A study by the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the Medical University of Graz has found that the skin microbiome also contains archaea, a type of extreme-loving microbe, and that the amount of it varies with age.
Department of Energy, BioTechMed Graz, Bavaria California Technology Center, University of Regensburg
Public Release: 28-Jun-2017 Protein data takes significant step forward in medicine
Scientists at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oregon Health & Science University are part of a nationwide effort to learn more about the role of proteins in cancer biology and to use that information to benefit cancer patients.
NIH/National Cancer Institute
Public Release: 26-Jun-2017
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Microbe mystery solved: What happened to the Deepwater Horizon oil plume
The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 is one of the most studied spills in history, yet scientists haven't agreed on the role of microbes in eating up the oil. Now a research team at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has identified all of the principal oil-degrading bacteria as well as their mechanisms for chewing up the many different components that make up the released crude oil.
Energy Biosciences Institute
Public Release: 22-Jun-2017
Science Study sheds light on how bacterial organelles assemble
Scientists at Berkeley Lab and Michigan State University are providing the clearest view yet of an intact bacterial microcompartment, revealing at atomic-level resolution the structure and assembly of the organelle's protein shell. This work could benefit research in bioenergy and pathogenesis, and it could lead to new methods of bioengineering bacteria for beneficial purposes.
US Department of Energy, National Institutes of Health
Public Release: 21-Jun-2017
Nature Researchers find new mechanism for genome regulation
The mechanisms that separate mixtures of oil and water may also help the organization of a part of our DNA called heterochromatin, according to a new Berkeley Lab study. Researchers found that liquid-liquid phase separation helps heterochromatin organize large parts of the genome into specific regions of the nucleus. The work addresses a long-standing question about how DNA functions are organized in space and time, including how genes are silenced or expressed.
National Institutes of Health, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine
Public Release: 12-Jun-2017
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Researchers find a surprise just beneath the surface in carbon dioxide experiment
An X-ray technique, coupled with theoretical work, revealed how oxygen atoms embedded very near the surface of a copper sample had a more dramatic effect on the early stages of the reaction with carbon dioxide (CO2) than earlier theories could account for. This information could prove useful in designing new types of materials to further enhance reactions and make them more efficient in converting carbon dioxide into liquid fuels and other products.
Public Release: 12-Jun-2017
Nature Biotechnology Uncovered: 1,000 new microbial genomes
US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute scientists have taken a decisive step forward in uncovering the planet's microbial diversity. In Nature Biotechnology, they report the release of 1,003 phylogenetically diverse bacterial and archaeal reference genomes -- the single largest release to date. The DOE is interested in learning more about this biodiversity because microbes play important roles in regulating Earth's biogeochemical cycles and uncovering gene functions and metabolic pathways has wide applications.
DOE/Office of Science
Public Release: 31-May-2017
Science Advances Newly identified microbial process could reduce toxic methylmercury levels
A team led by the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has identified a novel microbial process that can break down toxic methylmercury in the environment, a fundamental scientific discovery that could potentially reduce mercury toxicity levels and support health and risk assessments.
DOE/Office of Biological and Environmental Research
Public Release: 26-May-2017
Nature Microbiology Fungal enzymes team up to more efficiently break down cellulose
Cost-effectively breaking down bioenergy crops into sugars that can then be converted into fuel is a barrier to commercially producing sustainable biofuels. Bioenergy researchers are looking to fungi for help; collectively, they can break down almost any substance on earth, including plant biomass. Enabled by US Department of Energy Office of Science User Facilities, a team reports for the first time that early lineages of fungi can form enzyme complexes capable of degrading plant biomass.
DOE/Office of Science
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.