News

DOE JGI report highlights energy and environmental achievements

Jan. 10, 2006- 
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. — The U.S. Department of Energy’s investment in large-scale genome sequencing is paying dividends, with powerful implications for the nation’s energy and environmental cleanup needs, according to a report just released by the DOE Joint Genome Institute. As the leading national user facility targeting microbes and microbial communities, plants, and aquatic organisms...

Lab's annual report finds no adverse impact on environment

Jan. 4, 2006- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — Environmental monitoring of 2004 operations for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory indicates no adverse impact to public health or the environment. The findings are presented in the 2004 Site Annual Environmental Report. The report assesses the impact of LLNL operations on the environment, summarizes regulatory compliance and records results of environmental...

Astronomers detect echoes from ancient supernovae

Dec. 21, 2005- 
A team of astronomers has found faint visible “echoes” of three ancient supernovae by detecting centuries-old light reflected by interstellar gas clouds hundreds of light-years removed from the original explosions.Located in a nearby galaxy in the southern skies, the three exploding stars flashed into short-lived brilliance at least two centuries ago, and probably longer. The oldest is likely...

Models show growing more forests in temperate regions could contribute to global warming

Dec. 5, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — Planting trees across the United States and Europe to absorb some of the carbon dioxide emitted by the burning of fossil fuels may just outweigh the positive effects of sequestering that CO². In theory, growing a forest may sound like a good idea to fight global warming, but in temperate regions, such as the United States, those trees also would soak up sunlight...

Precise new measurement tests key physics theory under extreme conditions

Dec. 2, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — A new measurement in quantum electrodynamics – an extension of quantum mechanics – is 10 times more precise than any recent measurements. Quantum electrodynamics, or QED, is one of the most successful theories in physics and considered one of the fundamental theories of nature. QED describes the interaction of matter with photons, in which particles and antiparticles...

First NIF experiments validate computer simulations on road to ignition

Dec. 1, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — Researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have successfully conducted an important round of successful laser experiments at the National Ignition Facility (NIF), validating key computer simulations and theoretical projections relevant to the plasma and X-ray environment necessary to achieve ignition. NIF, which is more than 80 percent complete, is a...

Award named for noted LLNL physicist Kennedy Reed

Dec. 1, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — The California Section of the American Physical Society has named a student award for noted Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory physicist Kennedy Reed. During the 2005 fall meeting of the California Section of APS, the Kennedy Reed Award for Best Theoretical Research was given to three graduate students and/or postdoctoral researchers. The award consists of three...

Breakthrough 3D simulations win prestigious 2005 Gordon Bell Prize

Nov. 30, 2005- 
A team of scientists led by physicist Fred Streitz has been awarded the 2005 Gordon Bell Prize for pioneering materials science simulations conducted on the world’s fastest supercomputer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The winner was announced at the conclusion of the Supercomputing 2005 conference held earlier this month in Seattle, Wash. Other team members included James...

Astrophysicists quash alternative theory of star formation

Nov. 17, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — Through a series of theoretical calculations and supercomputer simulations, astrophysicists have determined that new stars form by gravitational collapse rather than the widely held belief that they come from the buildup of unbound gas. In astronomy, there are two dominant models as to how stars form. In both scenarios, a star initially forms when a gravitationally...

Protein folding study may lead to better treatment of neurodegenerative diseases

Nov. 14, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — By learning how and why a protein occasionally folds incorrectly, researchers may be able to better treat victims of Alzheimer’s, mad cow and other neurodegenerative diseases. Working with collaborators from UCLA, Ted Laurence of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s Physical Biosciences Institute measured varying distances within single protein molecules to...

WMD detection technologies must balance security with civil liberties

Nov. 11, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — New technologies to combat threats from weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) should not be developed in a legal vacuum. This contention is advanced by Don Prosnitz, the deputy director of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s Homeland Security Organization, in an article that appears today in the journal Science . “Balancing security and civil liberties is a...

Lasers improve scientists' understanding of complex proteins

Nov. 11, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — By shooting lasers at an RNA polymerase (RNAP) and a strand of DNA, scientists have learned a critical component of how a complex protein develops. Using a system called fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) on a single molecule, a researcher at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s Physical Biosciences Institute (PBI) in collaboration with UCLA...

Statement on congressional fundingfor the National Ignition Facility

Nov. 8, 2005- 
"We appreciate the vote of confidence expressed by members of the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Conference Committee in their continuing support for the National Ignition Facility (NIF).  We are committed to bringing NIF on line as quickly and efficiently as possible and we look forward to working with the National Nuclear Security Administration to minimize the impact of the...

New visualization cluster installed on world's fastest supercomputer

Nov. 7, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — The National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) program to ensure the safety, security and reliability of the nation’s nuclear deterrent in the absence of testing now has one of the world’s most powerful visualization computers installed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). Named “gauss,” the new visualization cluster was built by GraphStream...

Modeling of long-term fossil fuel consumption shows 14.5-degree hike in Earth's temperature

Nov. 1, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — If humans continue to use fossil fuels in a business-as-usual manner for the next few centuries, the polar ice caps will be depleted, ocean sea levels will rise by seven meters and median air temperatures will soar to 14.5 degrees warmer than current day. These are the stunning results of climate and carbon cycle model simulations conducted by scientists at Lawrence...

Researchers unveil reliable new approach to cancer drug delivery

Oct. 31, 2005- 
LIVERMORE , Calif. — Prostate, breast and other cancer patients may be offered a new, stauncher targeted drug delivery system to treat their diseases in the next decade. Using atomic force microscopy and computer simulations, researchers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the UC Davis Cancer Center have unveiled a new and reliable technique to characterize the binding...

World's fastest supercomputers dedicated at Livermore Lab

Oct. 27, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, CA -- The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today officially dedicated two new, next-generation supercomputers that will help ensure the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile remains safe and reliable without nuclear testing.  The IBM machines are housed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). NNSA Administrator Linton F. Brooks said the dedication marks the...

Crystal growth patterns linked to geological erosion

Oct. 17, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — Observing crystal growth has allowed scientists to get a better look into the world of geological erosion. By considering how the mechanisms of classical crystal growth theory could be reversed to describe crystal dissolution, scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University have used that theory to explain...

National Ignition Facility installsits 1,000th optical element unit

Oct. 7, 2005- 
LIVERMORE, Calif. — At an all-hands meeting on October 23 of last year, the National Ignition Facility's Ed Moses set an ambitious goal for his workers. In one year's time, he wanted them to install 1,000 line replaceable units (LRU), the complex modules containing optics and instrumentation, through which NIF's 192 laser beams must pass as they make their way through the enclosed...

LLNL climate scientist Benjamin Santer wins DOE Distinguished Scientist Fellowship

Oct. 5, 2005- 
LIVERMORE , Calif. — Human-induced climate change is likely to be one of the major environmental problems of the 21st century, and effective policies to mitigate human effects on climate will require sound scientific information. Providing that information is what climate scientist Benjamin Santer hopes to continue doing as the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s winner of the...