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Today's News

  • Radiation damage evolution spotlighted in pair of reports

    A pair of reports from Los Alamos National Laboratory this week in the “Nature” journal “Scientific Reports” are helping crack the code of how certain materials respond in the highly-damaging radiation environments within a nuclear reactor.
    The goal of these efforts is to understand at an atomistic level just how materials develop defects during irradiation, and how those defects evolve to determine the ultimate fate of the material.
    “The new insights provided by these studies will aid in both predicting and designing materials for improved performance and ultimately cost savings for nuclear energy production,” said Blas Uberuaga, lead author of one of the reports.
    Together, these results highlight the complex behavior of defects even in the simplest of materials. Further, “they provide insight into how defects evolve, properties that must be accounted for in predicting the performance of materials under irradiation,” said Enrique Martinez Saez, lead author of the second report.
    The first report is “The relationship between grain boundary structure, defect mobility, and grain boundary sink efficiency,” which was authored by Uberuaga, Martinez Saenz, Louis Vernon and Arthur F. Voter.

  • Lottery bill is a bad gamble for students

    Responsible parents would never gamble with their child’s college savings account.
    Yet that is precisely what the New Mexico Lottery is proposing to do with the Lottery Scholarship, which serves as the college fund for many New Mexico students from low- and middle-income families.
    The New Mexico Lottery is attempting to pass Senate Bill 355, which would eliminate the requirement that a minimum of 30 percent of lottery revenues be dedicated to the scholarship fund. This requirement was enacted in 2007, based on a proposal by Think New Mexico.
    Prior to that time, there was no minimum percentage that the lottery had to deliver to the scholarship fund. The lottery was required to dedicate at least 50 percent of revenues to prizes, but once that requirement was met, the lottery paid its operating costs and sent whatever was left over to the scholarship fund.
    As a result, scholarships received an average of only 23.76 percent of lottery revenues a year from 1997-2007.
    Fortunately, the legislature enacted the 30 percent requirement, and it has resulted in an additional $9 million a year going to the scholarship fund.

  • Budget committee has good forecast

    Some interesting economic facts about Los Alamos County were revealed at a recent budget session by the Los Alamos School Board.
    The findings are related to the board’s the 2014-15 Budget Committee’s fact finding into its preparation for district’s next school budget.
    At the budget committee’s opening session a few weeks ago, committee members made a public invitation for leaders from the county’s various economic sectors, which included Los Alamos National Laboratory, the real estate market, the county and other areas, to come to this week’s meeting to give presentations and insights into the community’s economic well being.
    It is hoped the series of presentations will help the committee down the road in its plan to reorganize budget priorities amid predictions that state funding for the budget is generally going to be the same amount the Los Alamos Public Schools received last year.
    This year, LAPS predicting the school system will receive about $34 million, which includes the $8 million in annual funding the district receives from the U.S. Department of Energy.

  • Public weighs in on improvements

    Los Alamos County Engineer Project Manager Bryan Aragon took public input on plans for the upcoming 20th Street improvement project Wednesday. Despite backlash from the business community after the Central Avenue improvement project in 2014, attendance at Wednesday’s meeting was relatively light.
    Improvements include the removal and replacement of curb and gutter, 6-foot sidewalks with ramps that meet ADA standards and new drainage structures, asphalt and street lighting. Two new pedestrian crosswalks will be located at either end of the new teen center.
    Ruby Alexander, owner of Ruby K’s Bagel Café, was concerned about a second year of potential losses. Business was so slow during Central Avenue construction last year, Alexander said, she had to reduce store hours and cut back on employees’ schedules. She asked for reassurances that the county would keep impacted businesses informed.
    “Strong, two-way communication can do the trick,” Alexander said. “I was shocked at the impact last summer.”
    Alexander’s husband Mike Alexander reinforced that, asking how information would be disseminated and what assurances business owners had that they would receive ample notice of construction-related issues.

  • Ski Report 3-19-15

    Angel Fire
    50-inch base. 3 new inches of snow in past 24 hours. 72 trails and 7 of 7 lifts open.

    Pajarito
    22-inch base. No new snow reported. 21 trails and 2 lifts open. The mountain is scheduled to close for the season March 22.

    Sandia Peak

    Closed for the season.

    Red River
    50-inch base. 2 inches in 24 hours. 58 trails and 7 lifts open.

    Sipapu
    36-inch base. No new snow reported. 38 of 41 trails and all 5 lifts open.

    Ski Apache
    34-inch base. No new snow reported. 55 of 55 trails and all 9 lifts open.

    Ski Santa Fe
    48-inch base. 1 inch in last 24 hours. 77 of 77 trails and 6 of 7 lifts open.

    Taos
    72-inch base. 5 inches in last 24 hours. 117 of 117 trails and all 15 lifts open.

    Angel Fire Nordic

    Temporarily closed.

    Chama XC
    64-inch base. No new snow reported.

    Enchanted Forest
    15-inch base. No new snow reported. 30 of 33 trails open.

    Valles Caldera
    3-inch base. No new snow reported. 4 of 8 trails open.
     

  • Sports Briefs 3-19-15

    Freeride fundraiser
    The Pajarito Mountain Freeride Team is going to the USASA National Championships.
    To raise money to help pay entry fees and travel costs, the team is hosting a pizza party, movie premier and silent auction. The fundraiser will take place 7 p.m. March 21 at the Pajarito Mountain Lodge.
    Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door or from any team member. For more information, email PajaritoFreerideTeam@gmail.com

    Spring volleyball
    The YMCA spring volleyball session, for third through sixth graders, is open for registration until April 10.
    This is a developmental program focused on teaching and improving proper volleyball skills and providing participants the foundation to play and compete for years to come.
    Third and fourth graders will be grouped together and fifth and sixth graders will be grouped together.
    The session will take place Tuesdays and Thursdays from April 14 - May 21.
    Cost is $40 for YMCA members and $60 for non-members

  • Pajarito crowns king and queen

    Lots of skiers and snowboarders competed on the slopes during Pajarito Mountain’s Skiesta Saturday.
    After all of the competitions, however, 10-year old Steven Boone was honored as the mountain’s king while 56-year old Robi Mulford was crowned as Pajarito’s queen.
    Below is a list of the other Skiesta winners:
    Pinhead Challenge
    Men: Clay Moseley.
    Women: Sanna Sevanto.
    Jump Contest
    0-10 girls: Maddie Ovaska.
    0-10 boys: Trey Wenicke.
    11-19 girls: Joanna O’Neill.
    11-19 boys: Lars Snyder.
    20-49 women: Tiffany Hinojosa.
    20-49 men: Daniel Nix.
    50+ women: Robi Mulford.
    50+ men: Kevin Mertes.
    Moguls
    0-10 boys: Steven Boone.
    11-19 girls: Joanna O’Niell.
    11-19 boys: Wakei Hettinga.
    20-49 women: Lisa Hecker.
    20-49 men: Sean Rielly.
    50+ men: Orby Mulford.
    Sloppy Slalom
    0-10 girls: Hailey McDonald.
    0-10 boys: Steven Boone.
    11-19 girls: Joanna O’Neill.
    20-49 men: James Miller.
    50+ women: Robi Mulford.
    50+ men: Guy Jackson.
    Rail Jam
    0-10 boys: Diego Hinojosa (snowboarder).
    0-10 boys: Steven Boone (skier).

  • Los Alamos lacrosse looking to make a title run

    With some of the best lacrosse players in the state wearing forest green and gold jerseys this year, Los Alamos has its sights set high.
    “We’re going to try and make a run for a state title,” Los Alamos coach James Miller said. “We have a small team, but we’re very powerful.”
    This year, eight teams will be battling for the state title.
    Los Alamos will compete with Santa Fe Prep, Sandia, Sandia Prep, Cibola, Bosque, Rio Rancho and Coronado (Texas).
    Santa Fe Prep won the title last year, but Los Alamos stole two of Griffins’ best players — Hudson and Reider Davenhall.
    Charlie Christensen and Wesley Skidmore will join the brothers on Los Alamos’ attack, giving the ’Toppers numerous offensive weapons.
    Los Alamos has 16 players on its roster this season and only four of them are new to the sport.
    Many of the newer ’Toppers will play defense.
    “Offensively we’re going to score a lot of goals, we just need to get the defense solidified and be working as a team,” Miller said.
    Most of the league has already played a few games this season, but Los Alamos will get its first competition this weekend.
    “We have to deal with snow up here so we’re a little behind the 8-ball,” Miller said.

  • Iran limited to 6K centrifuges in draft accord

    LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — A draft nuclear accord now being negotiated between the United States and Iran would force Iran to cut hardware it could use to make an atomic bomb by about 40 percent for at least a decade, while offering the Iranians immediate relief from sanctions that have crippled their economy, officials told The Associated Press on Thursday.
    As an added enticement, elements of a U.N. arms embargo against Iran could be rolled back.
    The very existence of a draft provided perhaps the clearest indication the sides were nearing a written agreement as they raced to meet a March 31 deadline for a framework pact. The deadline for a full agreement is the end of June.
    Officials said the tentative deal imposes new limits on the number of centrifuges Iran can operate to enrich uranium, a process that can lead to nuclear weapons-grade material. The sides are zeroing in on a cap of 6,000 centrifuges, officials said, down from the 6,500 they spoke of in recent weeks.
    That's also less than the 10,000 such machines Tehran now runs, yet substantially more than the 500 to 1,500 that Washington originally wanted as a ceiling. Only a year ago, U.S. officials floated 4,000 as a possible compromise.

  • Today in history March 19