Jupiter shows its true stripes

Aug. 27, 2019- 
There’s a reason why Jupiter’s stripes are only skin deep. It turns out that the planet’s zonal winds -- the alternating east-west jet streams seen in photographs as colorful stripes -- only descend to 3,000 kilometers in the atmosphere. Magnetic fields can make fluids that conduct electricity (like Jupiter’s atmosphere) behave more like honey than water. Deeper into the planet, where...

Lawrence Livermore climate scientist Karl Taylor elected American Geophysical Union fellow

Aug. 23, 2019- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) climate scientist Karl Taylor has been selected as a fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU). The AGU, with a membership of more than 60,000, is an international scientific association that spans the major disciplines of earth and space sciences. Each year a tenth of a percent of the members become fellows in recognition of their...

'Quantum annealer' shows promise in study

Aug. 21, 2019- 
An international team of researchers, including Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) physicist Arjun Gambhir, has developed a new algorithm for solving polynomial systems of equations using a type of quantum computer called a "quantum annealer." The team systematically examined how this method scales when facing increasingly difficult mathematical equations, with promising results....

Nanowire arrays could improve solar cells

Aug. 8, 2019- 
Transparent electrodes are a critical component of solar cells and electronic displays. To collect electricity in a solar cell or inject electricity for a display, you need a conductive contact, like a metal, but you also need to be able to let light in (for solar cells) or out (for displays). Metal is opaque, so the current techniques use metal oxides, most often indium tin oxide — a near...

Klein named American Meteorological fellow

July 31, 2019- 
Atmospheric scientist Stephen Klein has been selected as a fellow of the American Meteorological Society. The American Meteorological Society (AMS) is the premier scientific and professional organization in the United States promoting and disseminating information about the atmospheric, oceanic and hydrologic sciences. AMS membership numbers 13,000 and is divided roughly evenly among the...

Study reveals new structure of gold at extremes

July 30, 2019- 
Gold is an extremely important material for high-pressure experiments and is considered the "gold standard" for calculating pressure in static diamond anvil cell experiments. When compressed slowly at room temperature (on the order of seconds to minutes), gold prefers to be the face-centered cubic (fcc) structure at pressures up to three times the center of the Earth. However, researchers...

Under pressure: New device's 1.6 billion atmospheres per second assists impact studies

July 11, 2019- 
A new super-fast high-pressure device at DESY's PERA III X-ray light source allows scientists to simulate and study earthquakes and meteorite impacts more realistically in the lab. The new-generation dynamic diamond anvil cell (dDAC), developed by scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Deutsches Elektronen-Synchroton (DESY), the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility...

Co-Optima identifies six new blendstocks for improved fuel economy, vehicle performance

July 3, 2019- 
Three years after embarking upon a rigorous evaluation of a pool of more than 400 candidates, researchers with the Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) initiative have identified six blendstocks from two chemical families that exhibit the greatest potential to dramatically increase efficiency when combined with petroleum-based fuels in boosted (or turbocharged) spark-ignition...

Stellar reactions in a galaxy not so far, far away

July 1, 2019- 
Few people over the course of history have had a hand in discovering an atomic element. Yet nuclear chemist Dawn Shaughnessy joined a team of scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and Russia that discovered five elements from 1989 to 2010. Now she leads the Nuclear and Radiochemistry Group of the Physics and Life Sciences Directorate at LLNL and uses the National...

Did comet impacts jump-start life on Earth?

June 27, 2019- 
Comets screaming through the atmosphere of early Earth at tens of thousands of miles per hour likely contained measurable amounts of protein-forming amino acids. Upon impact, these amino acids self-assembled into significantly larger nitrogen-containing aromatic structures that are likely constituents of polymeric biomaterials. That is the conclusion of a new study by Lawrence Livermore...

High-powered laser diodes can reduce residual stress in metal 3D printed parts

June 25, 2019- 
In 3D printing, residual stress can build up in parts during the printing process due to the expansion of heated material and contraction of cold material, generating forces that can distort the part and cause cracks that can weaken or tear a part to pieces, especially in metals. Researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and the University of California, Davis are...

Microbial growth and carbon uptake are driven mainly by nature, not nurture

June 20, 2019- 
For soil microorganisms, how much of their life’s work is driven by evolution (nature) versus their current environmental (nurture)? As it turns out, the evolutionary history of soil microorganisms plays a larger role in growth rates and carbon uptake, according to a new study appearing in the June 17 edition of the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution. "Our results suggest that, similar to...

Santer to receive honorary graduate degree from the University of East Anglia

June 19, 2019- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) climate scientist Benjamin Santer is among scientists, authors, actors, business leaders, lawyers, surgeons and philanthropists who will be heading to the University of East Anglia (UEA) to become honorary graduates next month. "Lord of the Rings" and "Titanic" actor Bernard Hill, "Apple Tree Yard" author Louise Doughty and Virgin Money CEO Dame...

LLNL-led study finds any single hair from the human body can be used for identification

June 18, 2019- 
Any single hair from anywhere on the human body can be used to identify a person. This conclusion is one of the key findings from a nearly year-long study by a team of researchers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s (LLNL) Forensic Science Center (FSC) and Michigan State University. The team’s study, published in Scientific Reports, a journal of Nature Magazine, could provide an...

Turning the switch on biofuels

June 17, 2019- 
Plant cell walls contain a renewable, nearly limitless supply of sugar that can be used in the production of chemicals and biofuels. However, retrieving these sugars isn’t all that easy. Imidazolium ionic liquid (IIL) solvents are one of the best sources for extracting sugars from plants. But the sugars from IIL-treated biomass are inevitably contaminated with residual IILs that inhibit...

LLNL, foundation seek to set up ALS consortium

June 14, 2019- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and the Livermore Lab Foundation (LLF) are exploring the establishment of a consortium that would leverage the Lab’s computing capabilities to identify causal factors for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig’s disease. Under a newly signed strategic partnership project agreement, the foundation will provide funds to the Laboratory...

Phase-change materials from smartphones may lead to higher data storage, energy efficiency

June 13, 2019- 
Phase-change materials that are used in the latest generation of smartphones could lead to higher storage capability and more energy efficiency. Data is recorded by switching between glassy and crystalline material states by applying a heat pulse. However, to date it has not been possible to study what happens at the atomic level during this process. In a paper published in the June 14...

Santer awarded for communicating science

June 6, 2019- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) climate scientist Benjamin Santer is the recipient of the 2019 Sigma Xi William Procter Prize for Scientific Achievement. The Procter prize has been awarded since 1950 to a scientist who has made an outstanding contribution to scientific research and has demonstrated an ability to communicate the significance of this research to scientists in...

Making metal with the lightness of air

June 3, 2019- 
Gold, silver and copper are heavy metals, but LLNL scientists can now make them nearly as light as air — in a form so tiny it can ride on a mosquito’s back. The groundbreaking science, part of a joint NIF/Physical and Life Sciences (PLS) project supported by the Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program, created these ultra-low density metal foams to give physicists better...

Art with a purpose: LLNL and startup company imagine the future of indoor carbon capture

May 23, 2019- 
Whether you’re busy at work or lounging around at home, indoor air quality probably isn’t anywhere on the list of things on your mind. But numerous studies have shown that the buildup of carbon dioxide in environments such as office buildings, schools and homes can lead to increased health issues and a decrease in productivity, decision-making and cognitive performance. A new collaboration...