Friday, March 19, 2010

Hunt for the sterile neutrino heats up

Data collected from 1993 to 1998 by the Liquid Scintillator Neutrino Detector at LANL’s LANSCE facility was the first evidence for neutrino mass. LANL photo.

"The question of sterile neutrinos is absolutely crucial for nuclear particle physics and astrophysics," says William Louis of Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, who worked on a ground-based experiment in the mid-1990s that provided one of the first hints of sterile neutrinos. (Full Story)

Macro-weirdness: "quantum microphone" puts naked-eye object in 2 places at once

A new device tests the limits of Schrödinger's cat

Quantum weirdness: A scanning electron microscope image of the resonator. Image from Nature.

Researchers have demonstrated a device that can pick up single quanta of mechanical vibration similar to those that shake molecules during chemical reactions, and have shown that the device itself, which is the width of a hair, acts as if it exists in two places at once - a "quantum weirdness" feat that so far had only been observed at the scale of molecules.

"This is a milestone," says Wojciech Zurek, a theorist at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. "It confirms what many of us believe, but some continue to resist—that our universe is 'quantum to the core'." (Full Story)

Biofuels Summit To Explore Latest Research

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack has been invited to open the Summit with a keynote address. Other participants include top scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia Laboratories and, legislative schedules permitting, Sen. Jeff Bingaman, Sen. Tom Udall, Rep. Martin Heinrich, Rep. Harry Teague and Rep. Ben Ray Lujan. (Full Story)

HIV vaccine strategy expands immune responses

Two teams of researchers - including Los Alamos National Laboratory theoretical biologists Bette Korber, Will Fischer, Sydeaka Watson, and James Szinger - have announced an HIV vaccination strategy that has been shown to expand the breadth and depth of immune responses in rhesus monkeys. Rhesus monkeys provide the best animal model currently available for testing HIV vaccines. (Full Story)

Nuclear Review Nears Completion

The 2010 Nuclear Posture Review will be presented to Congress within a month, James N. Miller, principal deputy undersecretary of defense for policy, told the House Armed Services Committee's subcommittee on strategic forces.

Budget submissions for added infrastructure investment, such as a nuclear facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory, also were determined based on the review. The Defense Department also requested a 13-percent increase for the National Nuclear Security Administration. (
Full Story)

ARSEC Environmental Wins Los Alamos SM-43 D&D Contract

Construction of the TA-3 SM-43 administration building began in 1955. LANL photo.

RSEC Environmental, LLC was recently awarded a contract by Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS), for the demolition of the SM-43 Administration Building at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The project is scheduled to begin in April 2010 and is valued at approximately $6 million. (
Full Story)

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