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85 Current news of Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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Spin current detection in quantum materials unlocks potential for alternative electronics

17-Oct-2017

A new method that precisely measures the mysterious behavior and magnetic properties of electrons flowing across the surface of quantum materials could open a path to next-generation electronics. Found at the heart of electronic devices, silicon-based semiconductors rely on the controlled ...

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Newly identified microbial process could reduce toxic methylmercury levels

01-Jun-2017

A team led by the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has identified a novel microbial process that can break down toxic methylmercury in the environment, a fundamental scientific discovery that could potentially reduce mercury toxicity levels and support health and risk ...

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Simulations of laser pulse-material interactions

30-Mar-2017

With the advent of laser technology in the 1960s, materials scientists gained a new tool to both study and modify materials. Today, lasers allow researchers to manipulate materials on atomic and subatomic levels, leading to new materials and a host of other applications. For instance, by ...

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Small nanoparticles have surprisingly big effects on polymer nanocomposites

10-Mar-2017

Polymer nanocomposites mix particles billionths of a meter (nanometers, nm) in diameter with polymers, which are long molecular chains. Often used to make injection-molded products, they are common in automobiles, fire retardants, packaging materials, drug-delivery systems, medical devices, ...

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Automated measurement system enhances quality, reduces handling in Pu-238 production

06-Mar-2017

Under a collaborative partnership between the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Department of Energy, a new automated measurement system developed at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory will ensure quality production of plutonium-238 while reducing handling by workers. NASA ...

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The shape of melting in two dimensions

02-Feb-2017

Snow falls in winter and melts in spring, but what drives the phase change in between? Although melting is a familiar phenomenon encountered in everyday life, playing a part in many industrial and commercial processes, much remains to be discovered about this transformation at a fundamental ...

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Crystallization method offers new option for carbon capture from ambient air

11-Jan-2017

Scientists at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have found a simple, reliable process to capture carbon dioxide directly from ambient air, offering a new option for carbon capture and storage strategies to combat global warming. Initially, the ORNL team was studying methods ...

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'Tennessine' acknowledges state institutions' roles in element's discovery

02-Dec-2016

The recently discovered element 117 has been officially named "tennessine" in recognition of Tennessee's contributions to its discovery, including the efforts of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory and its Tennessee collaborators at Vanderbilt University and the University of ...

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3-D-printed permanent magnets outperform conventional versions, conserve rare materials

03-Nov-2016

Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have demonstrated that permanent magnets produced by additive manufacturing can outperform bonded magnets made using traditional techniques while conserving critical materials. Scientists fabricated isotropic, near-net-shape, ...

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Nickel-78 is a 'doubly magic' isotope, supercomputing calculations confirm

28-Oct-2016

For many of us, the term "doubly magic" may evoke images of Penn & Teller. However, for nuclear physicists, it describes atomic nuclei that have greater stability than their neighbors thanks to having shells that are fully occupied by both protons and neutrons. Theoretical physicists at the ...

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