Friday, September 18, 2015

Science on the Hill: For cybersecurity, in quantum encryption we trust

Raymond Newell, LANL photo.

As everyone becomes more interconnected on the Internet, personal information like bank and investment accounts, credit card numbers, home addresses and even social security numbers becomes more vulnerable to cybertheft. The same goes for the corporate world.

Los Alamos National Laboratory has specialized for decades in security and pushed the limits of computing. With that background, it’s only natural that we made it our business to improve data security with a solution from outside traditional computing. (Full Story)

 Mission: Mars, Lobos look to space

Nina Lanza in her Lab at Los Alamos, Mirage photo.

Looking through a telescope one night in Boston blew 7-year-old Nina Lanza’s mind. She declared it totally awesome and was off on a life-long fascination with spaceships, aliens, and science fiction.

Since even before she began her Ph.D. at UNM in 2006, Lanza has been focused on Mars geology.  Her master's thesis at Wesleyan University was on Martian landforms.  She worked on a Los Alamos National Laboratory project using data from the Mars Odyssey orbiter. (Story begins on page 18)

Van Andel Research Institute, Los Alamos National Laboratory to develop lung cancer model

Illustration from NIH.

A multidisciplinary team, led by Jeffrey MacKeigan, Ph.D., associate professor at Van Andel Research Institute (VARI), in collaboration with William Hlavacek, Ph.D., of Los Alamos National Laboratory, is designing a mathematical model for autophagy in lung cancer that will be used to develop novel cancer treatment strategies.

MacKeigan's lab in Grand Rapids will conduct the experimental research for the study and will send their results to Hlavacek's lab in New Mexico for model-guided computational analysis. Los Alamos is home to state-of-the-art large-scale computing systems that are an integral component in the development of mathematical models for complex biological systems. (Full Story)

Also from EurekAlert!

And two more stories from PhysOrg this week:

Scientists use lasers to simulate shock effects of meteorite impact on silica

Arianna Gleason making final adjustments at the Stanford Liner Accelerator facility.

A postdoctoral fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory is part of a research team that simulates the shock effects of a meteorite impact in silica.

Scientists used high-power laser beams at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory to simulate the shock effects of a meteorite impact in silica, one of the most abundant materials in the Earth's crust. They observed, for the first time, its shockingly fast transformation into the mineral stishovite – a rare, extremely hard and dense form of silica. (Full Story)

Ultrafast photodetectors allow direct observation of multiple electrons generated by a single photon

Andrew Fidler of Los Alamos National Laboratory examines an ultrafast photodetector, LANL photo.

Detecting and quantifying this multiplication process in working devices has proven challenging, however, as noted by Victor Klimov, director of the Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics (CASP) at Los Alamos National Laboratory. "The key advance is a newly developed capability which allows us to follow the fate of photogenerated electrons on ultrafast timescales directly in the photocurrent measurements. Research in our team and elsewhere had previously focused on using optical spectroscopy for detecting carrier multiplication and quantifying its efficiency," he said. (Full Story)

Quantum Dots to power buildings in the future

Quantum dots under UV light, LANL photo.

The University of Milan-Bicocca in Italy, and the Los Alamo’s National Laboratory, led by Victor Klimov at the Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics, have teamed up over the past two years to develop a new technique that produces nanoparticles, or “semiconductor quantum dots,” in windows to produce solar energy.

In what will be a boon to architects and engineers seeking to create carbon neutral buildings, Quantum Dots absorb sunlight as it passes through the newly-designed window panes, emitting an infrared wavelength that is captured at the window’s edge and transformed into energy. (Full Story)

To subscribe to Los Alamos Press Highlights, e-mail and include the words subscribe PressHighlights in the body of your email message; to unsubscribe, include unsubscribe PressHighlights.

Please visit us at