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Microbial research unravels a global nitrogen mystery

Ammonia-oxidizing microorganisms (AOM) use ammonia for energy and account for the annual oxidation of approximately 2.3 trillion kilograms of nitrogen in soil, freshwater, the subsurface and man-made ecosystems. But one major question that has remained unanswered for decades is how different AOM species coexist in the same environment: do they compete for ammonia or…

LLNL-led SCREAM team clinches inaugural Gordon Bell Prize for climate modeling

A Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL)-led effort that performed an unprecedented global climate model simulation on the world’s first exascale supercomputer has won the first-ever Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Gordon Bell Prize for Climate Modelling, ACM officials announced Thursday. The Simple Cloud Resolving E3SM Atmosphere Model (SCREAM) team, led…

Rewetting of a seasonally dry California grassland soil helps microbe-preying viruses thrive

Beneath the Earth's surface, a relentless conflict unfolds as soil viruses prey on their tiny microbial hosts, fundamentally shaping our planet's ecosystems. New research from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists and their collaborators at the University of California, Berkeley illuminates a fascinating phenomenon: the demise of soil bacteria and other…

Not all bacteria are created equal

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists have found that bacteria can help algae make carbon-neutral biofuels or draw down additional carbon from the atmosphere if the conditions are just right. The team used LLNL’s nanoSIMS to understand and quantify the role of the algal microbiome in processing algal carbon (C) and nitrogen (N). The research appears in…

New chemistry leads to more robust carbon capture materials

In a significant stride toward implementing scalable climate solutions, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists have uncovered how some carbon capture materials have improved lifetime compared to others. These materials are key in addressing greenhouse gas emissions and global warming concerns. Researchers have shed light on the mechanism that empowers…

LLNL-led project to advance understanding of plasma dynamics for future fusion power plants

A Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory-led project aimed at using computing tools to improve understanding of fusion plasma dynamics was among 12 projects recently awarded funding by the Department of Energy (DOE) to accelerate fusion power plant development. The four-year, multi-institutional Advanced Boundary Plasma Dynamics (ABOUND) project will receive $9.25 million…

DOE honors two early-career Lab scientists

Two scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) are recipients of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Science Early Career Research Program award. Daniel Casey and Gauthier Deblonde are among 93 awardees receiving the recognition. Under the program, typical awards for DOE national laboratory staff are $500,000 per year for five years. “Supporting…

Three graduate students earn awards to work at Lawrence Livermore

Three graduate students have earned Department of Energy Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) Program awards to perform their doctoral dissertation research at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). They are three among the 87 graduate students representing 33 states for the SCGSR program’s 2022 Solicitation 2 cycle. Through world-class training and…

Fueling up hydrogen production

Through machine learning, a Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientist has a better grasp of understanding materials used to produce hydrogen fuel. Water is everywhere in the environment and its interaction with metal oxide surfaces has a key role in processes that range from wetting, dissolution and corrosion to photocatalytic reactions. The relative…

New method unearths improved understanding of soil microbial interactions

Linking the identity of wild microbes with their physiological traits and environmental functions is a key aim for environmental microbiologists. Of the techniques that strive for this goal, Stable Isotope Probing — SIP — is considered the most effective for studying active microorganisms in natural settings. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists have…

New analysis helps reconcile differences between satellites and climate models

Satellite observations and computer simulations are important tools for understanding past changes in Earth’s climate and for projecting future changes. However, satellite observations consistently show less warming than climate model simulations from 1979 to the present, especially in the tropical troposphere (the lowest ~15km of Earth’s atmosphere). This difference has…

Scientists use carbon to detect a new nitrogen source in the open ocean

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and UC Santa Cruz scientists have detected a previously hypothesized class of nitrogen fixation in the surface ocean. Nitrogen scarcity limits the growth of ocean phytoplankton, a globally important carbon sink and the base of the marine food web. Nitrogen that can be used by phytoplankton generally has a very low concentration…

Come rain or shine, viruses live on in soil

Soils contain diverse communities of microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi, protists and viruses. Interactions between these tiny organisms shape the ability of soils to store carbon underground. However, not much is known about the spatial patterns and dynamics of viral communities in soil. New research by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists and…

LLNL to participate in three energy-focused projects

Transforming the way energy is collected, stored and used has become a defining challenge of the 21st century. To address this task, the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES) established the Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) program. This year, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and collaborators were awarded three projects. The first…

DOE honors two early career Lab scientists

Two scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) are recipients of the 2021 Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Science Early Career Research Program award. Andrea Schmidt and Xue Zheng are among 83 scientists nationwide selected for the recognition. Under the program, typical awards for DOE national laboratory staff are $500,000 per year for five years…

DOE honors two early career Lab scientists

Two scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) are recipients of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Science Early Career Research Program award. Federica Coppari and Erin Nuccio are among 76 scientists nationwide selected for the recognition. Under the program, typical awards for DOE national laboratory staff are $500,000 per year for five years…

Energy Department to invest $16 million to accelerate computer design of materials

The Department of Energy announced Tuesday that it will invest $16 million over the next four years to accelerate the design of new materials through the use of supercomputers. Two four-year projects will take advantage of superfast computers at DOE national laboratories by developing software to design fundamentally new functional materials destined to revolutionize…