Public Release: 1-Dec-2016
Nature Communications Where the rains come from
Intense storms have become more frequent and longer-lasting in the Great Plains and Midwest in the last 35 years. What has fueled these storms? The temperature difference between the Southern Great Plains and the Atlantic Ocean produces winds that carry moisture from the Gulf of Mexico to the Great Plains, according to a new study in Nature Communications.
US Department of Energy
Public Release: 28-Nov-2016
Nature Microbiology Genes, early environment sculpt the gut microbiome
Genetics and birthplace have a big effect on the make-up of the microbial community in the gut, according to research published Nov. 28. in the journal Nature Microbiology. The findings by a team of scientists from two Department of Energy laboratories represent an attempt to untangle the forces that shape the gut microbiome, which plays an important role in keeping us healthy.
Office of Naval Research, DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Public Release: 21-Nov-2016
Energy & Environmental Science Argonne researchers study how reflectivity of biofuel crops impacts climate
Researchers at Argonne National Laboratory have conducted a detailed study of the albedo (reflectivity) effects of converting land to grow biofuel crops. Based on changes in albedo alone, their findings reveal that greenhouse gas emissions in land use change scenarios represent a net warming effect for ethanol made from miscanthus grass and switchgrass, but a net cooling effect for ethanol made from corn
United States Department of Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office
Public Release: 17-Nov-2016
Science Engineering a more efficient system for harnessing carbon dioxide
A team from the Max-Planck-Institute (MPI) for Terrestrial Microbiology in Marburg, Germany, by tapping the DNA synthesis expertise of the US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI), has reverse engineered a biosynthetic pathway for more effective carbon fixation. This novel pathway is based on a new CO2-fixing enzyme that is nearly 20 times faster than the most prevalent enzyme in nature responsible for capturing CO2 in plants by using sunlight as energy.
European Research Council, Swiss National Science Foundation, ETH Zurich, Max-Planck-Society, DOE/Office of Science
Public Release: 8-Nov-2016 Brookhaven's Robert McGraw receives AS&T's Outstanding Publication Award from AAAR
Robert McGraw's AS&T Outstanding Publication Award from the American Association for Aerosol Research recognizes the novel method he developed nearly 20 years ago to mathematically characterize how the distribution of tiny atmospheric particles called aerosols evolves over time.
U.S. Department of Energy
Public Release: 8-Nov-2016
Nature Communications Study: Carbon-hungry plants impede growth rate of atmospheric CO2
New findings suggest the rate at which CO2 is accumulating in the atmosphere has plateaued in recent years because Earth's vegetation is grabbing more carbon from the air than in previous decades. The findings are based on extensive ground and atmospheric observations of CO2, satellite measurements of vegetation, and computer modeling.
Public Release: 4-Nov-2016 ORNL wins 7 R&D 100 Awards
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have received seven R&D 100 Awards in recognition of their significant advancements in science and technology.
Public Release: 3-Nov-2016 2017 DOE Joint Genome Institute Community Science Program allocations announced
The organisms and ecosystems highlighted in the 37 projects selected for the 2017 Community Science Program (CSP) of the US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI), a DOE Office of Science User Facility, 'exploit DOE JGI's experimental and analytical 'omics' capabilities and build our portfolio in key focus areas' and reflect the breadth and depth of interests researchers are exploring to find solutions to energy and environmental challenges.
DOE/Office of Science
Public Release: 1-Nov-2016 State's 3 largest public research institutions to increase collaboration
The state's three largest public research institutions have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which expresses the intent of the parties to increase research collaborations on complex challenges and provide additional research and training opportunities for students in the state. The memorandum was signed recently by leaders at the University of Washington, Washington State University and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
Public Release: 31-Oct-2016
Nature Geoscience Clouds are impeding global warming... for now
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory researchers have identified a mechanism that causes low clouds -- and their influence on Earth's energy balance -- to respond differently to global warming depending on their spatial pattern.
Public Release: 25-Oct-2016
Nature Microbiology Deep down fracking wells, microbial communities thrive
Microbes have a remarkable ability to adapt to the extreme conditions in fracking wells. New finding help scientists understand what is happening inside fracking wells and could offer insight into processes such as corrosion and methane production.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
Public Release: 24-Oct-2016
Nature Communications New bacteria groups, and stunning diversity, discovered underground
One of the most detailed genomic studies of any ecosystem to date has revealed an underground world of stunning microbial diversity, and added dozens of new branches to the tree of life. The bacterial bonanza comes from scientists who reconstructed the genomes of more than 2,500 microbes from sediment and groundwater samples collected at an aquifer in Colorado.
Public Release: 24-Oct-2016
Nature Amazon rainstorms transport atmospheric particles for cloud formation
Understanding how tiny particles emitted by cars and factories affect Earth's climate requires accurate climate modeling and the ability to quantify the effects of these pollutant particles vs. particles naturally present in the atmosphere. To better understand the baseline, scientists describe how they tracked particles in the largely pristine atmosphere over the Amazon rainforest -- effectively turning back the clock a few hundred years.
US Department of Energy, Amazonas State Research Foundation, São Paulo Research Foundation, Brazil Scientific Mobility Program, Max Planck Society, German Federal Ministry of Education and Research
Public Release: 18-Oct-2016
Journal of the American Chemical Society Unraveling the science behind biomass breakdown
Using the Titan supercomputer, an ORNL team created models of up to 330,000 atoms that led to the discovery of a THF-water cosolvent phase separation on the faces of crystalline cellulose fiber.
US Department of Energy
Public Release: 13-Oct-2016 Wave energy researchers dive deep to advance clean energy source
One of the biggest untapped clean energy sources on the planet -- wave energy -- could one day power millions of homes across the US. But more than a century after the first tests of the power of ocean waves, it is still one of the hardest energy sources to capture. Now, engineers at Sandia National Laboratories are conducting the largest model-scale wave energy testing of its kind to improve the performance of wave-energy converters.
Public Release: 11-Oct-2016 Three NREL technologies named as finalists for R&D 100 Awards
Two technologies developed by researchers at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory and a third developed through a collaboration between Wolfspeed, NREL, Toyota, and the University of Arkansas' National Center for Reliable Electric Power Transmission, have been named finalists by R&D Magazine for the coveted 2016 R&D 100 Awards.
Public Release: 11-Oct-2016 NREL to lead one exascale computing project, support three others
Scientists at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory will lead an effort to model the complex and turbulent flow of wind through large wind plants as part of DOE's Exascale Computing Project, which is gearing up US computational capabilities to prepare for the next generation of supercomputers. NREL will also provide support to three projects related to combustion science, urban systems, and power grid dynamics.
US Department of Energy
Public Release: 11-Oct-2016 NREL supercomputing model provides insights from higher wind and solar generation in the eastern power grid
A new study from the United States Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory used high-performance computing capabilities and innovative visualization tools to model, in unprecedented detail, how the power grid of the eastern United States could operationally accommodate higher levels of wind and solar photovoltaic generation. The analysis considered scenarios of up to 30 percent annual penetration of wind and solar.
Public Release: 7-Oct-2016 Hydrogen-powered passenger ferry in San Francisco Bay is possible, says Sandia study
Nearly two years ago, Sandia National Laboratories researchers Joe Pratt and Lennie Klebanoff set out to answer one not-so-simple question: is it feasible to build and operate a high-speed passenger ferry solely powered by hydrogen fuel cells? The answer is yes. The details behind that answer are in a recent report, 'Feasibility of the SF-BREEZE: a Zero Emission, Hydrogen Fuel Cell High Speed Passenger Ferry.'
Public Release: 4-Oct-2016
Water Research New technology helps pinpoint sources of water contamination
When the local water management agency closes your favorite beach due to unhealthy water quality, how reliable are the tests they base their decisions on? As it turns out, those tests, as well as the standards behind them, have not been updated in decades. Now scientists from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have developed a highly accurate, DNA-based method to detect and distinguish sources of microbial contamination in water.
Public Release: 8-Sep-2016 10 new projects to be supported under Joint DOE user facility initiative
The US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute and the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory have accepted 10 projects submitted during the 2017 call for proposals for their joint 'Facilities Integrating Collaborations for User Science' (FICUS) initiative. The accepted proposals will begin on Oct. 1, 2016 and fall under the following focused topic areas: Plant-Microbe Interactions, Biofuels and Bioproducts, and Biogeochemistry of Select Inorganics.
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.