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Rare Supernova Discovery Ushers in New Era for Cosmology

With help from a supernova-hunting pipeline based at NERSC, astronomers captured multiple images of a gravitationally lensed Type 1a supernova. This is currently the only one, but if astronomers can find more they may be able to measure Universal expansion within four percent accuracy. Luckily, Berkeley Lab researchers do have a method for finding more.

Making Batteries From Waste Glass Bottles

Researchers at the University of California, Riverside's Bourns College of Engineering have used waste glass bottles and a low-cost chemical process to create nanosilicon anodes for high-performance lithium-ion batteries. The batteries will extend the range of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and provide more power with fewer charges to personal electronics like cell phones and laptops.

Changing the Game

High performance computing researcher Shuaiwen Leon Song asked if hardware called 3D stacked memory could do something it was never designed to do--help render 3D graphics.

A Scientific Advance for Cool Clothing: Temperature-Wise, That Is

Stanford University researchers, with the aid of the Comet supercomputer at the San Diego Supercomputer at UC San Diego, have engineered a low-cost plastic material that could become the basis for clothing that cools the wearer, reducing the need for energy-consuming air conditioning.

Adjusting Solar Panel Angles a Few Times a Year Makes Them More Efficient

With Earth Day approaching, new research from Binghamton University-State of New York could help U.S. residents save more energy, regardless of location, if they adjust the angles of solar panels four to five times a year.

A Real CAM-Do Attitude

A multi-institutional team used resources at the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility to catalog how desert plants photosynthetic processes vary. The study could help scientists engineer drought-resistant crops for food and fuel.

Predictive Power

The Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors carried out the largest time-dependent simulation of a nuclear reactor ever to support Tennessee Valley Authority and Westinghouse Electric Company during the startup of Watts Bar Unit 2, the first new US nuclear reactor in 20 years. The simulation was carried out primarily on OLCF resources.

Advantage: Water

When water comes in for a landing on the common catalyst titanium oxide, it splits into hydroxyls just under half the time. Water's oxygen and hydrogen atoms shift back and forth between existing as water or hydroxyls, and water has the slightest advantage, like the score in a highly competitive tennis game.

Self-Assembling Polymers Provide Thin Nanowire Template

In a recent study, a team of researchers from Argonne, the University of Chicago and MIT has developed a new way to create some of the world's thinnest wires, using a process that could enable mass manufacturing with standard types of equipment.

Did You Catch That? Robot's Speed of Light Communication Could Protect You From Danger

If you were monitoring a security camera and saw someone set down a backpack and walk away, you might pay special attention - especially if you had been alerted to watch that particular person. According to Cornell University researchers, this might be a job robots could do better than humans, by communicating at the speed of light and sharing images.


ORNL to Collaborate with Five Small Businesses to Advance Energy Tech

Five small companies have been selected to partner with the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory to move technologies in commercial refrigeration systems, water power generation, bioenergy and battery manufacturing closer to the marketplace.

U.S. Department of Energy's INCITE Program Seeks Advanced Computational Research Proposals for 2018

The Department of Energy's INCITE program will be accepting proposals for high-impact, computationally intensive research campaigns in a broad array of science, engineering, and computer science domains.

New Berkeley Lab Project Turns Waste Heat to Electricity

A new Berkeley Lab project seeks to efficiently capture waste heat and convert it to electricity, potentially saving California up to $385 million per year. With a $2-million grant from the California Energy Commission, Berkeley Lab scientists will work with Alphabet Energy to create a cost-effective thermoelectric waste heat recovery system.

New SLAC Theory Institute Aims to Speed Research on Exotic Materials at Light Sources

A new institute at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is using the power of theory to search for new types of materials that could revolutionize society - by making it possible, for instance, to transmit electricity over power lines with no loss.

Lenvio Inc. Exclusively Licenses ORNL Malware Behavior Detection Technology

Virginia-based Lenvio Inc. has exclusively licensed a cyber security technology from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory that can quickly detect malicious behavior in software not previously identified as a threat.

Argonne Scientist and Nobel Laureate Alexei Abrikosov Dies at 88

Alexei Abrikosov, an acclaimed physicist at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory who received the 2003 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on superconducting materials, died Wednesday, March 29. He was 88.

Jefferson Lab Accomplishes Critical Milestones Toward Completion of 12 GeV Upgrade

The Continuous Electron Beam Accelerator Facility (CEBAF) at the U.S. Department of Energy's Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility has achieved two major commissioning milestones and is now entering the final stretch of work to conclude its first major upgrade. Recently, the CEBAF accelerator delivered electron beams into two of its experimental halls, Halls B and C, at energies not possible before the upgrade for commissioning of the experimental equipment currently in each hall. Data were recorded in each hall, which were then confirmed to be of sufficient quality to allow for particle identification, a primary indicator of good detector operation.

Valerie Taylor Named Argonne National Laboratory's Mathematics and Computer Science Division Director

Computer scientist Valerie Taylor has been appointed as the next director of the Mathematics and Computer Science division at Argonne, effective July 3, 2017.

Three SLAC Employees Awarded Lab's Highest Honor

At a March 7 ceremony, three employees of the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory were awarded the lab's highest honor ­- the SLAC Director's Award.

Dan Sinars Represents Sandia in First Energy Leadership Class

Dan Sinars, a senior manager in Sandia National Laboratories' pulsed power center, which built and operates the Z facility, is the sole representative from a nuclear weapons lab in a new Department of Energy leadership program that recently visited Sandia.


Ultrafast Imaging Reveals the Electron's New Clothes

Scientists use high-speed electrons to visualize "dress-like" distortions in the atomic lattice. This work reveals the vital role of electron-lattice interactions in manganites. This material could be used in data-storage devices with increased data density and reduced power requirements.

One Small Change Makes Solar Cells More Efficient

For years, scientists have explored using tiny drops of designer materials, called quantum dots, to make better solar cells. Adding small amounts of manganese decreases the ability of quantum dots to absorb light but increases the current produced by an average of 300%.

Electronic "Cyclones" at the Nanoscale

Through highly controlled synthesis, scientists controlled competing atomic forces to let spiral electronic structures form. These polar vortices can serve as a precursor to new phenomena in materials. The materials could be vital for ultra-low energy electronic devices.

In a Flash! A New Way for Making Ceramics

A new process controllably but instantly consolidates ceramic parts, potentially important for manufacturing.

Deciphering Material Properties at the Single-Atom Level

Scientists determine the precise location and identity of all 23,000 atoms in a nanoparticle.

Smallest Transistor Ever

It has long been thought that building nanometer-sized transistors was impossible. Simply put, the physics and atomic structural imperfections couldn't be overcome. However, scientists built fully functional, nanometer-sized transistors.

Creation of Artificial Atoms

For the first time, scientists created a tunable artificial atom in graphene. The results from this research demonstrate a viable, controllable, and reversible technique to confine electrons in graphene.

Developing Tools to Understand Lithium-Ion Battery Instabilities

Scientists develop tools to understand Li-ion battery instabilities, enabling the study of electrodes and solid-electrolyte interphase formation.

Skyrmions Created with a Special Spiral

Researchers at Argonne have found a way to control the creation of special textured surfaces, called skyrmions, in magnetically ordered materials.

Coming Together, Falling Apart, and Starting Over, Battery Style

Scientists built a new device that shows what happens when electrode, electrolyte, and active materials meet in energy storage technologies.


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Brookhaven Lab's Peter Takacs Elected OSA Fellow

Article ID: 666547

Released: 2016-12-15 10:05:13

Source Newsroom: Brookhaven National Laboratory

  • Credit: Brookhaven National Laboratory

    Peter Takacs with a test system that measures the imaging performance of charge-coupled device sensors used in the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope camera that is under construction in Brookhaven's Instrumentation Division. The integrating sphere on the left provides uniform illumination onto the sensors mounted in the vacuum chamber to the rear. A custom-made electronics board, held by Takacs, is used to record the images produced by the sensors. About 200 of these sensors will be used in the complete camera when the telescope begins operations in Chile in 2020.

UPTON, NY—Peter Takacs, a physicist in the Instrumentation Division at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory, has been named a Fellow of the Optical Society (OSA). He is among the 96 OSA members who the society's board of directors selected to be part of the 2017 class of Fellows for their significant contributions to the advancement of optics and photonics.

Takacs is being recognized for "outstanding original contributions to grazing incidence optical metrology instrumentation, theory, practice, and standards applied to x-ray optics for synchrotrons, free electron lasers, and space instrumentation, setting the pace for major development over three decades." Optical metrology refers to the science of performing measurements with light.

"Working with some very smart people to design state-of-the-art optical systems in the early days of synchrotron science at Brookhaven Lab, I was able to recognize the need for improved synchrotron optics," said Takacs. "Because Brookhaven was not in the business of fabricating mirrors, I channeled my efforts into developing metrology instrumentation that allowed manufacturers to improve their polishing techniques and produce useful optical components for us. This was a textbook example of the old adage "If you can't measure it, you can't make it.""

With the exception of managing the metrology program for a chemical laser project at TRW Defense and Space Systems from 1982 to 1983, Takacs has been part of the Instrumentation Division at Brookhaven Lab since 1981. He first joined Brookhaven as a member of the Biology Department in 1979.

Takacs was responsible for establishing the Optical Metrology Laboratory (OML) in 1983 as part of Brookhaven's Instrumentation Division. Scientists at the OML worked to improve the quality of optical components used in synchrotron radiation beamlines at the National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS), a former DOE Office of Science User Facility at Brookhaven (replaced in 2015 by NSLS-II with its own metrology laboratory). Every major synchrotron light source around the world now has an optical metrology laboratory modeled after the one Takacs started at Brookhaven.

Throughout his career at Brookhaven, Takacs has developed instrumentation and measurement techniques to test the surface quality of high-precision aspheric (not perfectly round) optics, such as cylindrical mirrors used to reflect x-rays at extreme grazing-incidence angles. He played a critical role in the development of the Long Trace Profiler—a surface-profiling instrument to characterize the shape of optics—and the transfer of its technology to a local small business. This technology transfer has enabled many synchrotron facilities around the world to characterize such mirrors, which are essential in building beamlines for studying nanostructured materials and thin films.

Takacs currently manages the metrology effort in characterizing the performance of charge-coupled device (CCD) sensors, which convert light into electronic signals that are digitized to produce images. He is part of the Brookhaven team that is leading the design and development of the CCD sensor array for the camera of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) currently under construction in Chile. One of the most critical components of LSST, the array contains more than 200 sensors that must be precisely placed on the camera's extremely flat focal plane in order to capture the light from billions of stars, galaxies, and solar system objects like asteroids and comets. When completed, LSST will rapidly survey the night sky, taking more than 800 panoramic images each night with its 3.2-billion-pixel camera, to provide an unprecedented view of our universe.

His other notable accomplishments include the development of a resolution calibration tool for optical, electron, and atomic-force imaging systems—a collaborative project with NSLS-II physicist Nathalie Bouet and researchers from DOE's Lawrence Berkeley and Argonne National Laboratories and ABeam Technologies, Inc. This technology, which was recognized with a 2015 R&D 100 Award, solves one of the most difficult problems in surface profiling and imaging metrology: the quantitative characterization of advanced imaging systems, such as interferometers and electron microscopes.

"Peter commands high international respect for his leadership in optical design and testing, particularly the metrology of optical components," said Graham Smith, head of the Instrumentation Division at Brookhaven Lab. "His recognition by the Optical Society of America is thoroughly deserved."

Takacs is also a Fellow of the SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, where he has served on the education and conference program committees and as conference chair. He earned his BA in physics from Rutgers University in 1969 and his PhD in physics from Johns Hopkins University in 1975.

Founded in 1916, the Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional association in optics and photonics, home to accomplished science, engineering, and business leaders from all over the world. Through world-renowned publications, meetings, and membership programs, OSA provides quality information and inspiring interactions that power achievements in the science of light.

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.