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November
2001

The Laboratory in the News

Fundamental Science Supports National Needs
Commentary by Hal Graboske

Welding Science: A New Look at a Fundamental Technology
Research reveals the welding process at the atomic level in real time.

Probing the Subsurface with Electromagnetic Fields
Electromagnetic induction imaging is being tested as a way to track carbon dioxide injected underground to enhance recovery from oil fields.

Probing the Liquid Water Surface
Combining x-ray spectroscopy and a water microjet, researchers directly measured the distances between neighboring oxygen atoms on the water's surface, providing the first observation of the liquid surface relaxation.

New Targets for Inertial Fusion
Scientists are designing fusion fuel targets for two promising techniques for commercial fusion power poduction.

Patents and Awards

 


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  • Welding Science: A New Look at a Fundamental Technology
  • (pdf file, 3MB)
    Livermore has a vital interest in knowing all it can about welding. Dependable welds are important for maintaining the performance and safety of nuclear weapons. Welds will also play a key role in the success of the Department of Energy’s planned repository for long-term storage of nuclear wastes, which is being investigated through the Yucca Mountain project. In experiments using synchrotron radiation and x-ray diffraction, a Livermore team has succeeded in producing the first-ever maps of real-time microstructural changes that occur in and around the weld area as a metal melts and resolidifies. More recently, their experiments have revealed second-by-second changes in a metal’s microstructure during welding. Results of recent time-resolved experiments indicated that nonequilibrium solidification of welds can occur, affecting weld reliability. These data are now being used by others to design new self-shielded welding electrodes with improved weld properties.

  • Probing the Subsurface with Electromagnetic Fields
  • (pdf file, 2.5MB)
    Lawrence Livermore researchers have been working with U.S. oil companies to improve enhanced oil recovery technologies so that more oil can be extracted from domestic production fields. One promising method is to inject carbon dioxide underground to force more oil to the surface. A technique to view underground fluids and gases, called crosswell electromagnetic imaging, is a valuable tool for monitoring enhanced oil recovery operations. The technology provides high-resolution images of underground deposits of oil, water, gas, and other materials by measuring electrical resistivity or conductivity of electrical current passing through different materials. The technique is being tested by Lawrence Livermore researchers at a central California oil field. The technology could be extended to monitoring underground sequestration (long-term storage) of carbon dioxide from industrial operations, a technique that is being explored to help the environment.

  • Probing the Liquid Water Surface
  • (pdf file, 2MB)
    Combining x-ray spectroscopy and a water microjet, researchers directly measured the distances between neighboring oxygen atoms on the water's surface, providing the first observation of the liquid surface relaxation.

  • New Targets for Inertial Fusion
  • (pdf file, 1M)
    Scientists are designing fusion fuel targets for two promising techniques for commercial fusion power poduction.



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    UCRL-52000-01-11 | December 30, 2001