Friday, April 8, 2011

Group's virtual 3-D tour simulates nuke plant walk-through for new inspectors

Thanks to a team of scientists and graphic artists at Los Alamos National Laboratory, nuclear-facility inspectors for the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency can test-drive their inspection with a virtual tour of the nuclear facility before they ever set foot in the place.

As virtual inspectors, they can walk through the facility and familiarize themselves with every inch — the ceiling, the floor, the nooks and crannies, and the placards on doors. (Full Story)

Watch a LANL YouTube video about this work

Force of acoustical waves tapped for metamaterial

These images show microcomputed x-ray tomography renderings of an acoustically engineered nanocomposite
metamaterial. LANL image.

By creating an inexpensive bench-top technique, as described in the American Institute of Physics' journal Review of Scientific Instruments, Los Alamos National Laboratory researchers are making these highly desirable metamaterials more accessible.

Their technique harnesses an acoustical wave force, which causes nano-sized particles to cluster in periodic patterns in a host fluid that is later solidified, explains Farid Mitri, a Director's Fellow, and member of the Sensors & Electrochemical Devices, Acoustics & Sensors Technology Team, at LANL. (Full Story)

LANL researchers make nuclear fuels advance

Illustration showing structures of UI4(1,4-dioxane)2 (left) and the UI3(1,4-dioxane)1.5 complexes. LANL image.

Advances made by researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory could enhance the ability of scientists to develop advanced nuclear fuels in a safer, simpler manner.

Uranium chemistry research relies heavily on a variety of uranium “starting materials”—solids and solutions—that are precursors to uranium compounds of oxygen, nitrogen, halogen, carbon, fluorine, and other elements, all of which are candidates for advanced nuclear fuels. (Full Story)

Would an underground nuclear plant be safer for Israel?

LANL’s Wes Myers. Haaretz Newspaper photo.

Wes Myers, a veteran scientist at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the U.S., analyzes the various options for reactors built deep under the surface of the earth, as well as underground facilities for the treatment of nuclear waste. (Full Story)

Duo earn national urban rescue ranking

Maez and her Labrador Coalby ride a
zipline. Monitor photo.

Debbi Maez works in the Security Services Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory by day and has spent her evenings and weekends training Coalby for last month's grueling certification testing.

Jack Killeen, Security Services Division Leader at LANL, wanted the community to know of Maez’ and Coalby’s accomplishment. (Full Story)

Also from the Monitor this week:

Crews complete restoration at DP East

The spot where the old TSTA facility once stood.
Photo from the Monitor.

Crews have completed grading and site restoration at the former site of a cluster of buildings on the east end of Technical Area 21. LANL and subcontractor crews demolished 10 structures during the past year. (Full Story)

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