Monday, December 20, 2010
LANL researchers awarded honors
A team of researchers responsible for enabling "time travel" for the World Wide Web has received the 2010 Digital Preservation Award from the Institute for Conservation and Digital Preservation at a ceremony held at the Royal Institute in London.
Los Alamos National Laboratory computer scientist Herbert Van de Sompel and colleagues Robert Sanderson, Lyudmila Balakireva and Harihar Shankar of LANL's Research Library joined Old Dominion University researchers Michael Nelson and Scott Ainsworth in winning the top honor. (Full Story)
Nuke-the-asteroid idea revived to protect earth
Researchers speculate a giant asteroid fragment smashed into Earth 65 million years ago, creating the Chicxulub crater off the coast of the Yucatan. Credit: Don Davis
A new study has injected new life into the old idea of dealing with a potentially threatening space rock by nuking it. The new analysis suggests that a nuclear blast could safely destroy even a relatively large asteroid.
"It would be blown to smithereens," said study lead author Bob Weaver of Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, who presented the findings here Dec. 13 at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. (Full Story)
Future Darwinism - evolution as physics
LANL scientist Wojciech Zurek.
This comes on the heels of another recent paper on Quantum Darwinism by Wojciech Zurek, a theoretical physicist at the US Los Alamos National Laboratory.
He developed a proof based on the Darwinian model, which provides a rigorous interpretation of the emergence of classical reality from quantum states and at the same time offers a key element in the proof needed to realise a Unified Theory of Evolution. (Full Story)
D'Agostino: Unprecedented commitment to modernize
NNSA Administrator Tom D’Agostino.
The debate over New START has ushered in a new consensus on the need to modernize our nuclear deterrent and the resources required to get the job done. (Full Story)
LANL has a record cleanup this year
Los Alamos National Laboratory finished 12 months worth of environmental cleanup by breaking LANL records in several areas as fiscal year 2010 ended. Los Alamos personnel conducted more field investigations and cleanup campaigns than ever and completed a record number of lab shipments to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP). (Full Story)
Newly discovered phase helps explain materials’ ability to convert waste heat to electricity
Scientists have discovered that a class of materials known to convert heat to electricity and vice versa behaves quite unexpectedly at the nanoscale in response to changes in temperature. The discovery--described in the December 17 issue of Science--is a new "opposite-direction" phase transition that helps explain the strong thermoelectric response of these materials.
It may also help scientists identify other useful thermoelectrics, and could further their application in capturing energy lost as heat, for example, in automotive and factory exhaust.
The scientists [including those from Los Alamos National Laboratory] . . . were studying lead chalcogenides (lead paired with tellurium, selenium, or sulfur) using newly available experimental techniques and theoretical approaches that allow them to "see" and model behavior of individual atoms at the nanoscale, or on the order of billionths of a meter. (Full Story)
Los Alamos National Laboratory selects LATA for $8M project
Engineering, environmental and technical services company Los Alamos Technical Associates Inc., has won an $8 million contract for cleanup work at LANL's plutonium processing lab.
Under the contract, which runs through 2014, LATA will remove more than 5,000 linear feet of underground waste pipes, excavate contaminated soil, and demolish concrete slabs from torn-down buildings. (Full Story)
Los Alamos tearing down old administration building
Watch the video here!
Built in 1955, the old LANL Administration Building is a 316,000 square foot office and mixed laboratory structure made primarily of concrete and re-bar that's been largely vacant for several years. In an 18-month project the Laboratory is demolishing the old building - and in the process recycling just about everything.
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