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September
2002

The Laboratory in the News

Livermore—Poised for the Future
Commentary by Michael R. Anastasio

A Hitchhiker's Guide to Early Earth
Experiments examine the possibility that the building blocks of life arrived on Earth as hitchhikers on comets.

A New World of Maps
More than pretty pictures, maps prepared with the tools of geographic information sciences allow researchers to find new relationships among spatial information.

Solid-Oxide Fuel Cells Stack Up to Efficient, Clean Power
The goal of Livermore's research in solid-oxide fuel cells is electric power generated cleanly and efficiently at an affordable cost.

Empowering Light—Historic Accomplishments in Laser Reasearch
During the past 40 plus years, the laser program at Livermore has played a seminal role in taking high-energy lasers from concept to reality.

Patents and Awards

 

 


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View the Entire September 2002 Issue in PDF (16MB)

  • A Hitchhiker's Guide to Early Earth
  • (pdf file, 2MB)
    High-pressure experiments with one of Livermore’s 6.2-meter-long light-gas guns are exploring the theory that amino acids and other building blocks of life may have arrived on Earth by hitchhiking on icy comets. Some modeling has been done in the past, but these are some of the first experiments to test the theory. Mixtures of amino acids and water are placed in a small capsule prior to the experiment, and in the few dozen high-pressure gas-gun experiments to date, 40 to 95 percent of the initial amino acids survived shock compression. More importantly, the dominant reaction products are various peptide pairings of the initial amino acids. Identical experiments using chemical weapon simulants have also begun to reveal what might happen to a missile-borne chemical weapon if it were intercepted by another missile en route to its target. These two disparate subjects are connected at a fundamental level by concern about the fate of organic liquids subjected to strong shock compression.

  • A New World of Maps
  • (pdf file, 6.1MB)
    The relatively new field of geographic information systems (GIS) marries the power of computers with the ever-increasing amount of information that is geospatially based. GIS tools organize, relate, analyze, and visualize data to help discover new meanings and insights. GIS maps are composed of layers of geographically superimposed data that allow analysts to handle and visualize large amounts of information simultaneously. GIS is helping a growing number of Livermore researchers to understand and communicate their research data. GIS is particularly effective when paired with computer modeling. Livermore projects using GIS include international and homeland security, the Department of Energy’s National Atmospheric Release Advisory Center, prescribed burns and wildfire modeling, ecologic monitoring, and seismic studies.

  • Solid-Oxide Fuel Cells Stack Up to Efficient, Clean Power (pdf file, 1MB)
    The goal of Livermore's research in solid-oxide fuel cells is electric power generated cleanly and efficiently at an affordable cost.

  • Empowering Light—Historic Accomplishments in Laser Research (pdf file, 4.6MB)
    During the past 40 plus years, the laser program at Livermore has played a seminal role in taking high-energy lasers from concept to reality.


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    UCRL-52000-02-9 | October 7, 2002