Friday, April 11, 2014
The $1.5m golden nugget: World’s largest single crystal of gold discovered
Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory have determined that this is the world's largest single crystal of gold. LANL photo.
Government experts have confirmed the world’s largest single crystal of gold. Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory used a neutron scanner to effectively look inside the 217.78-gram piece of gold.
The team at Los Alamos National Laboratory used the Lujan Neutron Scattering Center to look deep inside the mineral using neutron diffractometry. Neutrons, different from other probes such as X-rays and electrons, are able to penetrate many centimeters deep into most materials. (Full Story)
World’s largest gold crystal found
Diffraction Device at the Lujan Neutron Scattering Center. LANL photo.
It's the size of a golf ball, but a lot more valuable: Scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory's Lujan Neutron Scattering Center have verified that a heavy piece of gold, found years ago in Venezuela, is, in fact, a single crystal of the valuable element — and it's worth an estimated $1.5 million.
The lump of gold, which weighs 217.78 grams (about 7.7 ounces), was brought to Los Alamos to confirm whether it was a single crystal of gold, or a more common multiple-crystal structure. (Full Story)
Also from PhysOrg, KRQE-TV, Jewelers Circular Keystone, and YouTube
Desktop human body developed for toxicity testing
ATHENA, the Advanced Tissue-engineered Human Ectypal Network Analyzer project team, is developing four human organ constructs, the liver, heart, lung and kidney, which are based on a miniaturized platform. Each organ component will be about the size of a smartphone screen, and the whole ATHENA body of interconnected organs would fit on a desk. The project is supported by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA). (Full Story)
Nuclear Arms Control R&D consortium includes Los Alamos
A consortium of thirteen universities and eight national laboratories, led by the University of Michigan and including the Los Alamos National Laboratory as a partner, has been awarded a $25 million grant by the NNSA. The consortium is dedicated to the research and development (R&D) of nuclear arms control verification technologies, including nuclear safeguards effectiveness. (Full Story)
Zapping Rocks On Mars
ChemCam’s composite selfie. NASA image.
“It’s been a good year on Mars,” said Roger C. Wiens, speaking at a symposium at Pittcon, held earlier this month in Chicago. Wiens, a scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory, is principal investigator for ChemCam, an instrument on the Curiosity rover, the latest vehicle to explore the surface of Earth’s next-door neighbor. During the past 18 months, ChemCam has acquired more than 120,000 spectra, which are helping to elucidate the geologic history of Mars. (Full Story)
Ethanol plowing the way In biocrude development
Richard Sayre, from the Daily Press.
When it comes to all sources of power, corn ethanol provides the worst energy return on investment.
Technological breakthroughs are allowing the development of biofuels that could be as economical and practical as today’s fossil fuels, according to Los Alamos’ Richard Sayre, who gave the keynote address during IdeaFest being held at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion. Sayre spoke in the Muenster University Center on the USD campus. (Full Story)
Organization helps businesses procure government contracts
Gil Torres purchased Sigma Science in 2013 and wanted to expand the company’s reach beyond the work it did providing risk management and environmental safety and health services for Los Alamos and Sandia.
Torres needed specific certifications to bid on certain government contracts. Six months after embarking on the process, Torres received 8(a) certification.
"Our overall revenue has increased by greater than 25 percent due to increased assignments at Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories,” he said. (Full Story)
Energy conservation goal of innovative homes
Doug Lenberg explains Real Green Building Systems. From the Daily Times.
Doug Lenberg, president of Real Green Building Systems, and two Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists won a New Mexico Small Business Assistance award recognizing the viability of the home’s design.
According to the December 2013 Los Alamos National Laboratory study, all the subsystems in an RGBS home pay for themselves after eight years. And Lenberg said his father's RGBS home cost less than $200,000 to build. (Full Story)
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