Lab showcases energy research at annual gathering of American Association for Advancement of Science

Feb. 11, 2011

Lab showcases energy research at annual gathering of American Association for Advancement of Science

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory will showcase its work in energy research when the American Association for the Advancement of Science holds its annual gathering, Feb. 17-21, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

This year's theme, "Science Without Borders," integrates interdisciplinary science -- both across research and teaching -- that utilizes diverse approaches as well as demonstrate the diversity of its practitioners.

The Laboratory will join hundreds of other research institutions, universities, high-tech industries and professional societies to present exhibits on all facets of science. The Lab's booth will be open to conference participants Feb. 18-20, and family day guests Feb. 19-20.

The exhibit will feature an energy-related theme with two major components. The first includes a 3D virtual ride on a beam of light as it barnstorms through the National Ignition Facility (NIF) -- the world's largest laser system -- and smashes into a BB-sized target filled with fusion fuel, all in a quest to develop fusion as a future energy source.

The second area focuses on finding solutions for the energy-climate challenge. Visitors can try out a simulation developed by LLNL scientists as a learning tool about energy and climate change. Players face the challenge of meeting the world's 21st century energy demands on a fixed budget while keeping carbon emissions at a minimum.

"This exhibit features two of the Laboratory's most exciting and important research thrusts -- laser fusion research with NIF and understanding climate change and the impact of our energy choices, all aimed at ensuring the nation's energy security," said Tom?!s D?-az de la Rubia, LLNL deputy director for Science and Technology.

Throughout the conference, Lab scientists will speak on topics of national interest, from future sources of clean, renewable energy to adventures in antimatter.

Lab chemist Trish Baisden will help celebrate the 100th anniversary of Marie Curie's second Nobel Prize with "Marie Curie, the Premier Chemist, Co-Discoverer of Radiation and Radioactivity." Baisden will be one of three speakers who will reflect on Curie's work. The session begins at 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 18.

Also that day, Jane Long, principal associate director at large, will present a discussion on "Portraits of the California Energy System in 2050: Cutting Emissions by 80 Percent," beginning at 1:30 p.m. This study looks at ways California can meet the governor's order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. During this session, speakers will explore the construction of energy system portraits for meeting stringent emission standards, what areas researchers should focus on now.

Lab physicist Hui Chen will present "Generation of Positrons with Intense Laser Light," as part of the session "Through the Looking Glass: Recent Adventures in Antimatter." Antimatter provides unique opportunities in science and technology, ranging from fundamental tests of the symmetries of nature to the study of materials and human metabolism. This symposium explores forefront science with positrons (the antiparticles of electrons), antiprotons, antiatoms and the most complex antinuclei yet observed. The symposium takes place Friday, 1:30-4:30 p.m.