Friday, October 31, 2008

News from Los Alamos National Laboratory for Oct. 25 - 31

TIME's best inventions of 2008

10. The World's Fastest Computer

On May 26, at 3:30 in the morning, a $133 million supercomputer nick-named Roadrunner broke the long-sought-after petaflop barrier: 1 quadrillion calculations per second.

Built by IBM for Los Alamos National Laboratory, Roadrunner will be
used primarily to simulate the effects of aging on nuclear weapons. Next up: the exaflop barrier.

Read all about Time's
top 50 innovations for 2008.

Energy visionary says quadruple LANL budget

public forum Wednesday explored possible responses to the national energy crisis from the Los Alamos and New Mexico perspectives. Hosted by the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos, the meeting brought together several energy experts who agreed that major efforts are needed immediately.

Miro Kovacevich, president of an energy and economic policy advocacy organization, ViviLux, was one of the drivers behind the Solar Energy Research Park and Academy at Northern New Mexico College and other renewable energy developments in EspaƱola. Read all about it

Lab to offer jobs to subcontractor's workers

Los Alamos National Laboratory plans to offer jobs to hundreds of workers now employed by KSL Services, the lab's largest subcontractor, before its contract expires in December.

The move means Los Alamos will be handling its own building maintenance, trash collection and other "support" services for the first time in its history. It will also be the first time that workers under collective bargaining agreements are employed directly by the lab. See the
story here.

New cycle for startups kicks in

Technical Ventures Corporation's mission as a matchmaker between technology innovators and equity capital investors was written into the Lockheed-Martin contract to manage Sandia National Laboratories as an economic development concept.

Since then, TVC has gone on to perform a larger role in technology transfer and commercialization projects coming out of other national laboratories as well, including Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Nevada Test Site. See the whole story here.

Gates gives rationale for expanded deterrence

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said Tuesday that the United States would hold "fully accountable" any country or group that helped terrorists to acquire or use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.

The statement was the Bush administration’s most expansive yet in trying to articulate a vision of deterrence for the post-Sept. 11 world. It went beyond the cold war notion that a president could respond with overwhelming force against a country that directly attacked the United States or its allies with unconventional weapons. See the story here.

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