Friday, April 26, 2013

LANL scientists asked to help save Italian landmark

Los Alamos visitors and Italian scholars at the top of the cupola of the Santa Maria del Fiore cathedral in Florence, Italy. Photo courtesy Yvonne Keller.

Can a national nuclear weapons laboratory find meaningful work helping to preserve one of the grand architectural treasures of the Renaissance?

Scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory recently hosted a delegation of Italian experts to brainstorm ways of using some of the laboratory’s technology to protect Brunelleschi’s dome, a UNESCO world heritage site in Florence, Italy. (Full Story)

LANL to help Italian Landmark

Dick Knipfing introduces a story about LANL expertise being employed to preserve a threatened cathedral.

Los Alamos Lab scientists have been asked to help save an Italian landmark. Brunelleschi's Dome has topped the Cathedral of Florence since 1426, but there's growing concern about its structural stability.

The dome has several cracks and the worry is that a big earthquake could bring it down. LANL hastechnology to create a high-resolution model of the dome and simulate what would happen if there is major quake. (Full Story)

Editorial: Tech transfer working

Revolutionary ideas that could benefit society soon are bubbling out of New Mexico’s national laboratories. University of New Mexico Medical Center will start clinical trials this summer to screen women for breast cancer using a new ultrasound three-dimensional technology developed at Los AlamosNational Laboratory. (Full Story)

Also appearing this week in the Albuquerque Journal:

Trees may get a dose of healing

The cottonwood trees at Alameda Park might get a new lease on life. The Alamogordo parks department is working with a Los Lunas-based company to purchase a soil conditioning product that will help flush accumulated salts from soil around the trees in an effort to restore them to good health, according to Parks Supervisor Erik Marion.

The city will try the product sold by Soil Secrets at Alameda Park. The product, called Terrapro, was developed and tested with the help of Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories. (Full Story)

UCLA space scientists find way to monitor elusive collisions in space

Many collisions occur between asteroids and other objects in our solar system, but scientists are not always able to detect or track these impacts from Earth. The "rogue debris" created by such collisions can sometimes catch us by surprise.

UCLA space scientists have now devised a way to monitor these types of collisions in interplanetary space by using a new method to determine the mass of magnetic clouds that result from the impacts. The research was made possible by the acquisition of data by Pioneer Venus and by Venus Express missions, and received support from both NASA and the Los Alamos National Laboratory's Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics. (Full Story)

Airborne Terrorist Attack Study To Be Conducted In Subways

Los Alamos National Laboratory researchers are involved in an effort to safeguard Americans from airborne terrorism. “Terrorist Balloon” by Vlad Nanca.

A multimillion-dollar airflow study will be conducted this summer to help authorities better understand the risks of airborne terrorist attacks on New York City and its subway system.

The study is "the first of its scale to study airflow in a dense, complex urban environment both below and above-ground." Researchers from the Argonne National Laboratory and the Los Alamos National Laboratory, along with other meteorologists and engineers, will assist scientists from BNL as they "track the movement of harmless tracer gases" through the urban atmosphere. (Full Story)

La Cueva trio wins with words

Justin Sanchez of Albuquerque La Cueva High School during the finalist team judging at the New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge. LANL Photo.

Not everyone has the aptitude to comprehend computer languages. But a group of astute La Cueva High School students who do came up with a way for computers to understand relationships between words in human language through statistical analysis,thereby winning the top prize at this year’s New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge.

In all, more than $49,000 in individual scholarships were awarded, including $28,0000 from LANL’s Computer, Computational and Statistical Sciences Division and Los Alamos National Security, which runs the Lab. (Full Story)

This story also appeared in the Los Alamos Monitor

LANL makes progress on tuberculosis

Tuberculosis bacteria. CDC Photo.

New work from Los Alamos National Laboratory shows promise for stemming the advance of tuberculosis (TB) by revealing how the bacterium interacts with its human hosts and thus providing a new pathway for early detection in patients.

A recent publication from the Los Alamos Biosensor Team describes the association of a key tuberculosis virulence factor, lipoarabinomannan (LAM) with human high-density lipoproteins (HDL) in blood. (Full Story)

Also appearing this week in the Los Alamos Monitor:

Wallace spells out seismic hazards

Terry Wallace, Principal Associate Director for Global Security. LANL photo.

One of the highlights at Friday’s meeting of the Regional Coalition of LANL Communities was a presentation by Terry Wallace, principal associate director for global security at Los Alamos National Laboratory, on “The Seismic Hazard of New Mexico: Earthquakes & Building Codes.” (Full Story)

Scholarships given to 73 students

Los Alamos Employee Scholarship recipients Micaela Lucero, Kevin Gao and Danielle Harrier. Courtesy photos.

Seventy-three students from seven Northern New Mexico counties were announced this week as recipients of this year’s scholarships through the Los Alamos Employees’ Scholarship Fund.

Funding for the scholarships comes from $411,500 in donations from Los Alamos National Laboratory employees and Los Alamos National Security, LLC. (Full Story)

This story also appeared in the Los Alamos Monitor 

Los Alamos National Laboratory Employees Receive Pollution Prevention Awards

Molten plutonium in a crucible. LANL photo.

Nearly 400 Los Alamos National Laboratory employees on 47 teams received Pollution Prevention awards for protecting the environment and saving taxpayers more than $8 million. The employees were recognized at the Laboratory’s annual Pollution Prevention Awards ceremony on Monday (April 22), Earth Day. (Full Story)

This story also appeared in the Los Alamos Daily Post


Top BioEnergy Researchers to Establish U.S.-Israel Collaboration

Blue Green Algae.

Officials of the U.S. Department of Energy’s algae programs based at the Los Alamos National Laboratory and Israeli government officials who coordinate aspects of their nation’s energy and technology commercialization programs also have flown in for the meetings. The delegation’s activities here follow two and one half days in Washington DC that included a briefing by senior White House staff and meetings with headquarters scientists. (Full Story)

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