Public Release: 

Berkeley Lab researchers at AAAS

DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Can more accurate climate models help us understand extreme weather events? What can we expect with the upcoming restart of the Large Hadron Collider and what does the future of accelerators look like? These questions, and the ongoing search for a better battery, are just some of the many presentations by Lawrence Berkeley National Lab researchers at this year's AAAS meeting. And don't forget to stop by our booth (#406) in the Exhibit Hall this week. Here's a quick look at Berkeley Lab@AAAS:

Friday, Feb. 13

1:00 -2:30 PM

Severe Weather in a Changing Climate: Informing Risk
Room LL20D (SJCC)
The Human Influence on the Risk of Present and Future Severe Weather

Michael Wehner, Berkeley Lab

The science is clear and convincing that climate change is happening. It is happening now, it is happening rapidly, and it is happening because of human activities. There are many indicators of these changes beyond surface temperature. The further changes in climate over the coming decades present major challenges for society. Especially important are changing trends in severe weather events resulting from the changing climate. This session uses the latest data analyses and modeling studies to examine the understanding of severe weather events in the changing climate, both for the U.S. and around the world, and what this means for us now as well as into the future. Wehner's talk will examine several of the key issues associated with severe weather trends and projections under a changing climate.

1:00-2:30 PM

Novel Technologies for Exploring the Uncultivated Microbial Majority
Room LL20C (SJCC)
Novel Function-Driven Single Cell Genomics Approaches

Tanja Woyke, Joint Genome Institute, Berkeley Lab

The vast majority of bacterial, archaeal, and viral species on our planet are yet uncultivated, which has hampered our ability to study these elusive yet globally important organisms. They play critical but often uncharacterized roles in carbon and nutrient cycling in terrestrial and aquatic environments as well as in plant and animal growth and health. Traditional approaches of metagenomics and more recently single-cell genomics have provided invaluable insights into their coding potential, yet functional and phenotypic characterization are challenging in a cultivation-independent setting. In this session Woyke will look at techniques for capturing single cells based on functional activities for subsequent DNA isolation, amplification and genome sequencing.

Saturday, Feb. 14

8:00-9:30 AM

A New Paradigm for Electron Microscopy: Fast Detectors and Extreme Data Experimentation
Overcoming the Physical Limitations of Electron Detection
Room LL21C (SJCC)

Peter Denes, Berkeley Lab

In early microscopes employing visible light, the human eye was the detector and the human being was the data acquisition system. With the advent of photographic film, the vagaries of the human as detector were supplanted by electronic detectors. The speed, convenience (and now performance) of these electronic detectors have all but obviated film. A transformational change in electron microscopy became possible with new detectors. These detectors are much more sensitive than previous electronic detectors, and can operate at speeds 3 orders of magnitude faster than previous detectors. This means that one now takes movies rather than pictures: enabling us to see materials undergoing changes in real time, at atomic resolution, and taking out the electron beam-induced blur associated with biological samples. This presentation will discuss how these new detectors are designed, together with the physical limitations on electron detection.

1:00-2:30 PM

What Can We Expect from the Second Run of the LHC in 2015?
Room LL20D (SJCC)
Beate Heinemann, Berkeley Lab, ATLAS Experiment
Higgs and Supersymmetry: Going Beyond the Standard Model?


Peter Jacobs, Berkeley Lab
Quark Gluon Plasma and the Early Universe

In 2015, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will begin its second three-year run. The highlight of the machine's spectacularly successful first run was the discovery by the ATLAS and CMS experiments of the long-sought Higgs boson, confirming the mechanism that gives fundamental particles masses and leading to the award of the 2013 Physics Nobel Prize. After substantial upgrades, LHC will restart at a beam energy substantially higher than the first run. This opens up new discovery potential for the four major experiments that study LHC particle collisions. Researchers hope to delve deeper into understanding why nature prefers matter to antimatter. This session will look at what to expect from the LHC's second run and include an overview of what was learned from the LHC's first run.

1:30- 4:30 PM

Next-Generation Batteries for Mobile Devices and the Grid
Room 230B (SJCC)
Moving from Innovation to Installation: The Advanced Manufacturing Roadmap

Venkat Srinivasan, Berkeley Lab

Making the big leaps in battery technology needed to meet consumer demand for cheaper electric cars with longer operating ranges will require simultaneous innovations on a number of fronts. Can energy storage companies band together with researchers and manufacturers to speed progress, as Sematech did for the semiconductor industry? This talk will also describe first results of CalCharge's Advanced Manufacturing Roadmap, which assesses the potential for renewed U.S. battery manufacturing.

1:30-4:30 PM

Innovations in Accelerator Science
Room LL20A (SJCC)
Future Accelerator Technologies

Wim Leemans, Berkeley Lab

Particle accelerator systems have been key drivers for a broad array of fundamental discoveries and transformational scientific advances since the early 20th century. Since their inception, they have also been core components of U.S. technological innovation and economic competitiveness. Fundamental accelerator science provides the foundation in knowledge and workforce upon which major advances in accelerator-driven technologies will be based. Breakthroughs are foreseen in many areas, including ultra-small "accelerators on a chip"; highly efficient accelerator power sources; and a variety of novel accelerator implementations for medical, industrial, and homeland security applications. Leeman's talk will discuss R&D efforts to realize the next generation of lepton accelerator technologies using laser- and lepton-driven plasma wakefields and dielectric structures that could usher in a new era of colliders for high energy physics research.

Sunday, Feb. 15

8:30-11:30 AM

Emerging Trends in Visualizing Physical Models and Rapid Prototyping for Biological Systems
Room 230C (SJCC)
Physical Biomodeling and Foldable, Coarse-Grained Physical Model of Polypeptide Chain

Promita Chakraborty, Berkeley Lab

Physical Biomodeling is a new area of exploration at the interface of computer science and the biological systems. While tremendous advances have been made in computational biology, cutting-edge 3D printing provides unprecedented opportunities for a third angle into the landscape, thus uncovering this new computational space for modeling that has remained unexplored so far. We tie together these concepts of form-specific physical-digital interfaces. As a first step towards building a computer-augmented physical polypeptide chain model that may have applications in structural biology and drug design, we have designed, fabricated and validated a dimensionally accurate, physical model of the polypeptide chain (called Peppytide), that has a flexible backbone to match their molecular counterparts. It opens up new possibilities and challenges with guiding principles that can be extended to build other form-specific physical bio-models.

10:00-11:30 AM

3D Chemical Imaging: New Frontier Across Disciplines
The First Infrared Tomography at the Molecular Level
Room 230B (SJCC)

Michael C. Martin, Berkeley Lab

An Iconic moment in the history of infrared imaging may have been born in 2013 with the announcement of the first technique to offer full color IR tomography. The technique has combined Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy with computed tomography (CT-scans) to create a non-destructive 3D imaging technique that provides molecular-level chemical information of unprecedented detail on biological and other specimens with no need to stain or alter the specimen.

10:00-11:30 AM

Imaging Earth: Innovations in Imaging Earth
Progress Towards Projecting Climate Change at Storm Scales
Room 210CD (SJCC)

William Collins, Berkeley Lab

Ever since the iconic "Blue Marble" photograph was taken from the Apollo 17 spacecraft in 1972, scientists and the public have recognized the importance of imaging and visualizing the Earth system. This session highlights the last 40 years of innovations in imaging Earth, both through remote sensing and through modeling of the Integrated Earth System. Advances in remote sensing technology have enabled monitoring of the Earth at unprecedented resolution, providing important information for understanding atmospheric, land, and ocean processes and monitoring weather while advances in computational science have also enabled numerical simulations of the Earth at unprecedented resolution. The increased resolution and volume of remote sensing information and numerical simulations has created challenges in organizing, visualizing, and analyzing these large datasets. This session will present the current state-of-the-art in imaging of Earth using remote sensing and numerical simulations.


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