Friday, April 4, 2008

News from Los Alamos National Laboratory, March 27-April 4

LANL telescope captures star's spectacular implosion
Ed Fenimore likes to explain the massive power of a gamma ray burst with the example of a raisin. If you set off a nuclear weapon, the Los Alamos National Laboratory fellow said, you essentially convert the mass of one raisin into energy — creating a hell of a blast.

"When a gamma ray burst happens, you're converting 400,000 times the mass of the Earth directly into energy," Fenimore said
. "That's a lot of raisins. That's a lot of energy. And that's why you can see it from billions of light years away."

See the complete story here.

LANL scientist reads rocks' clues about dawn
of man
Every now and then, the Earth uncovers a time capsule from its distant past that can teach us more about who we are, as humans, and where we came from.

The most prolific spot for these capsules lies in the Ethiopian homeland of Los Alamos National Laboratory geologist Giday WoldeGabriel, who's been studying the area for decades.

It's there, in one of the most geologically interesting rift valleys in the world - at a boundary between three tectonic plates called the Afar Triple Junction - that WoldeGabriel and other scientists have found specimens of ancestral humans and other creatures at several sites dating between 150,000 and 6 million years old.

Read reporter Sue Vorenberg's coverage in its entirety here.

Los Alamos technology turns up on television
A state-of-the-art sampling device developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory was to be featured thi
s week in an episode of Crime Scene Investigation-New York (CSI: NY) on CBS. Although the device didn’t make the show’s final cut, CBS affiliate KRQE (Albuquerque) aired in advance an informative segment about the technology.

The "sampler gun" rapidly collects and tracks radiological, chemical, and biological samples in solid, liquid, or gaseous forms. The technology has a hands-off capability that minimizes the
risk of sample cross-contamination and exposure risks to sampling personnel.

Read KRQE’s text and watch the video!

Lab posts April issue of Currents magazine
The future of actinide science, technology transfer, cultural stewardship, and supercomputing challenges for high school students are covered in the latest issue of the Lab’s magazine for employees.
Read and enjoy the entire issue of Currents online.

Lab’s nanotechnology center honored by DOE
Department of Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman recently honored the Los Alamos National Laboratory-Sandia National Laboratories Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (CINT) for effective management of construction and instrumentation projects at CINT’s Gateway to Los Alamos facility and Albuquerque’s Core facility.

Read the entire story in LANL's online Daily NewsBulletin.

New Mexico girls expand their horizons
More than 100 New Mexico girls came to the University of New Mexico, Los Alamos to learn about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The 29th annual Expanding Your Horizons conference and workshop is cosponsored by the Laboratory, Los Alamos National Security, LLC, UNM-LA, and Los Alamos Women in Science.

Laboratory scientist Emily Schultz-Fellenz (pictured) of Environmental Geology and Spatial was one of the presenters.

The LANL online Daily NewsBulletin has the whole story.