.....Advertisement.....
.....Advertisement.....

Los Alamos National Laboratory

  • Princeton prof who worked on Manhattan Project dies

    Princeton University nuclear physicist Rubby Sherr, whose work on the Manhattan Project helped usher in the Atomic Age and whose academic publications span nearly 80 years, died July 8 of natural causes at the Quadrangle independent-living community in Haverford, Pa. He was 99.

    Colleagues and family describe Sherr — whose name is pronounced “Ruby” — as a tireless researcher with an engaging personality. He was a raconteur and connoisseur of jokes, fly-fishing and folk songs whose exploration of nuclear physics persisted until shortly before his death. Sherr published his first paper in 1936 while a graduate student at Princeton, and published his last six papers this year. He spent nearly 40 years at Princeton, joining the faculty in 1946 and transferring to professor of physics, emeritus, in 1982.

  • DNFSB report details safety issues at PF-4

    More details became available this week about the stand-down of activities in the Plutonium Facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory last month that was ordered by lab director Charlie McMillan.

    The Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board sent a letter and report to Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, detailing some of the criticality issues surrounding the work being done at PF-4.

    “The current pause at PF-4 is aimed at addressing the concerns in the letter and others identified by lab employees and managers,” lab spokesman Fred DeSousa said. “However, the letter is addressed to Secretary Moniz and Acting Administrator (Bruce) Held, so we would respectfully ask that you direct your questions to DOE and NNSA.”

    DOE and NNSA officials did not respond to requests for comment.

    The report, meanwhile, pointed to a number of issues including a lack of safety personnel and lax control of operating procedures.

    The biggest issue is a significant shortage of Los Alamos National Security criticality safety staff has hindered the ability of LANS to address deficiencies at the facility, and the backlog of unresolved criticality safety issues continues to grow.

  • Biofuels take center stage

    Bradbury Science Museum will host an open house event, featuring the New Mexico Consortium’s Biofuel Exhibit, from 5-8 p.m. July 26.

    There will be a brief presentation by Dr. Jose Olivares, Bioscience Division Leader, from 6- 6:15 p.m. Light refreshments will be served.

    “Algae to Biofuels: Squeezing Power from Pond Scum” is brainchild of Olivares of LANL and Dr. Richard Sayre of NMC and LANL.

    The exhibits highlight the work of the NMC and algae researchers at LANL, UNM and NMSU to create an informative, educational, interactive exhibit to display at the Bradbury Museum.

    The NMC plans to develop the exhibit for a broad audience to take it “on the road” as part of the NMC’s educational outreach program.

    Why algae?

    Some experts believe that algae is set to eclipse all other biofuel feedstocks as the cheapest, easiest, and most environmentally friendly way to produce liquid fuel. Come learn why it’s easy to get excited by algae, how fast they grow, how they can help humanity and the environment.

    The exhibit talks about the 8,000 kinds of algae and how we find the strains with the potential to replace fossil fuels. Learn about the latest research on algae to produce high value products and how it is harvested and processed.

  • Enabling time travel for the scholarly web

    An international team of information scientists has begun a two-year study to investigate how web links in scientific and other academic articles fail to lead to the resources being referenced.
    This is the focus of the Hiberlink project in which the team from Los Alamos National Laboratory and the University of Edinburgh will assess the extent of “reference rot” using a vast corpus of online scholarly work. It is funded by a grant of $500,000 from the US-based Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, coordinated by EDINA, the designated online services center at the University of Edinburg, which serves the needs of universities and colleges across the UK.
    “Increasingly, scientific papers contain links to web pages containing, for example, project descriptions, demonstrations, and software. But, as we all know, web pages change or disappear,” said Herbert Van de Sompel, the Los Alamos principal investigator on the project. “Currently, there is no archival infrastructure to safeguard such pages and hence revisiting them some time after they were linked from a paper is many times impossible. The result is a broken scholarly record.”

  • Norris Bradbury's impact on LANL discussed

    Who is Norris Bradbury? He has been called the “savior” of Los Alamos and even the “father” of the federal laboratory system, yet many people have not heard of him.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory historian Alan Carr discussed his life, career and influence of Norris Bradbury in the first of two  brown bag public lectures at the Bradbury Science Museum.

    The first lecture Tuesday covered Bradbury’s young life, work on the Manhattan Project and post World War II time. The second lecture on Aug. 21 will focus on why the lab evolved into a multidisciplinary institution and Bradbury’s legacy. Employees and the public are welcome to bring their lunch. 

    Lecture scheduled tonight

  • Pajarito Road access tightened by LANL security

    Los Alamos National Laboratory at the direction of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Los Alamos Field Office will restrict access on Pajarito Road to only laboratory badge holders effective Monday, Aug. 12.

    This means that laboratory personnel and subcontractors will no longer be able to “vouch” for non-laboratory personnel such as family members.

    “Our laboratory and security access procedures are continually reviewed and updated to ensure we provide a secure working environment for our employees and visitors,” said Michael Lansing, the laboratory’s Associate Director for Security and Safeguards. “Entry to the Pajarito Corridor provides access to our most sensitive areas and now is restricted to those with a valid reason and badge to enter this area.”

    Pajarito Road has been access controlled for several years. Only individuals who have federal or Laboratory issued badges can travel this road, which traverses through several Laboratory technical areas and intersects with N.M. 4 on the east end and Diamond Drive on the west end near the main Technical Area 3.

    The laboratory and the Los Alamos Field Office of the NNSA are in the process of notifying local government and school officials, about the planned changes to access on Pajarito Road.

  • Lab set to tighten security on Pajarito Road

    Los Alamos National Laboratory at the direction of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Los Alamos Field Office will restrict access on Pajarito Road to only Laboratory badge holders effective Monday, Aug. 12. This means that Laboratory personnel and subcontractors will no longer be able to “vouch” for non-Laboratory personnel such as family members.

    “Our Laboratory and security access procedures are continually reviewed and updated to ensure we provide a secure working environment for our employees and visitors,” said Michael Lansing, the Laboratory’s Associate Director for Security and Safeguards. “Entry to the Pajarito Corridor provides access to our most sensitive areas and now is restricted to those with a valid reason and badge to enter this area.”

    Pajarito Road has been access controlled for several years. Only individuals who have federal or Laboratory issued badges can travel this road, which traverses through several Laboratory technical areas and intersects with NM 4 on the east end and Diamond Drive on the west end near the main Technical Area 3.

    The Laboratory and the Los Alamos Field Office of the NNSA are in the process of notifying local government and school officials, about the planned changes to access on Pajarito Road.

  • Enabling time travel for the scholarly web

    An international team of information scientists has begun a two-year study to investigate how web links in scientific and other academic articles fail to lead to the resources being referenced.

    This is the focus of the Hiberlink project in which the team from Los Alamos National Laboratory and the University of Edinburgh will assess the extent of “reference rot” using a vast corpus of online scholarly work. It is funded by a grant of $500,000 (£310,000) from the US-based Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, coordinated by EDINA, the designated online services center at the University of Edinburg, which serves the needs of universities and colleges across the UK.

    “Increasingly, scientific papers contain links to web pages containing, for example, project descriptions, demonstrations, and software. But, as we all know, web pages change or disappear,” said Herbert Van de Sompel, the Los Alamos principal investigator on the project. “Currently, there is no archival infrastructure to safeguard such pages and hence revisiting them some time after they were linked from a paper is many times impossible. The result is a broken scholarly record.”

  • McMillan to speak in ABQ

     Los Alamos National Laboratory Director Charlie McMillan will be one of 17 speakers at this year’s TEDxABQ, event organizers announced this week. TEDxABQ, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 7 at Popejoy Hall, is an independently organized event in Albuquerque affiliated with the popular TED Talks series.
    McMillan will discuss the linkage between early education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (known as STEM) and national security.
    “In national security science, we can’t afford to lose a generation of young people,” McMillan said.
     “Particularly U.S. citizens. The world is a rapidly changing place.”
    McMillan is by law one of four people in the U.S. who must send an annual letter to the President and Congress assessing the state of weapons in the U.S. nuclear stockpile.
     But because the U.S. stopped full-scale nuclear weapons testing in 1992, the assessments must depend on classified, highly sophisticated computer modeling and non-nuclear experiments.
    “It’s like proving that a 40-year old car will start, but without actually starting the engine,” McMillan said. 

  • LANL to consider logo change

    The Los Alamos National Laboratory is considering a change to its logo to better reflect what it calls a diverse and evolving mission.
    LANL officials say the lab was established 70 years ago with the sole mission of designing and building an atomic bomb to end World War II.
    Today, they say, its work in national security covers a wide range of issues — including nuclear non-proliferation, energy security, climate change modeling, countermeasures to nuclear and biological terrorist threats and space.
    The lab is conducting an online survey for feedback on potential logos at https://surveymonkey.com/s/YBHQYHX