Doe Science news source
The DOE Science News Source is a Newswise initiative to promote research news from the Office of Science of the DOE to the public and news media.
  • 2017-11-07 15:05:16
  • Article ID: 684794

Atlas Wins Ocean-Themed Competition

  • Credit: Argonne National Laboratory

    Argonne National Laboratory scientist Sergey Chemerisov (left) works with Ian Hamilton (right), CEO of Atlas Energy Systems and a member of Chain Reaction Innovation to set up a system to generate ionized gas from the Van de Graff Accelerator at Argonne. This system coverts gas to energy through a patented novel technology for use in portable battery systems.

  • Credit: OceanExchange

    Ray Fitzgerald, President and COO, Logistics of Wallenius Wilhelmsen (WWL, middle) presents the Orcelle award to Atlas Energy Systems’ Austin Lo, Chief Technologist (left) and Ian Hamilton, Founder and CEO at Ocean Exchange (right) in Savannah Georgia.

  • Credit: Argonne National Laboratory

    Ian Hamilton, CEO of Atlas Energy Systems, and a member of the first cohort of Chain Reaction Innovations at Argonne National Laboratory, receives the Orcelle Award at Ocean Exchange in Savannah, Georgia.

Chain Reaction Innovations (CRI), the Lab Embedded Entrepreneurship Program at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory, made a big splash this month at Ocean Exchange when one of the companies in its first cohort took home the top prize for innovation.

Ocean Exchange is an international innovation pitch competition held annually in Savannah, Georgia, to find innovative, sustainable worldwide solutions that demonstrate the ability to generate economic growth and increase productivity while reducing the use of nature’s resources and waste production, all with an emphasis on oceans, coastlines, shipping/logistics and zero emissions.

Atlas Energy Systems, a startup that began at Purdue University and has been growing at Argonne under the CRI program, won the 2017 Orcelle Award sponsored by Wallensius Wilhelmsen Logistics (WWL), a global logistics company that serves the manufacturing industry and is a leading maritime freight provider.

“WWL is excited to present the 2017 Orcelle Award to Atlas Energy Systems. Atlas' innovative technology allows for waste from the medical isotope industry to be repurposed in a responsible manner as a new battery technology that is not only safe but may possibly allow vessel operators to eliminate emissions from combustion engines while a vessel is working in port," said Ray Fitzgerald, president and COO of WWL Logistics, and chairman of the Ocean Exchange, in a press release.

Atlas Energy Systems, LLC is developing a new kind of industrial battery that can operate in portable sizes for months or years without recharging and provide emission-free power for generators. The Atlas Energy System uses the same platform technology found in household smoke detectors and expands it to provide continuous, long-lasting energy, even in extreme conditions of temperature or pressure, in the kilowatt range. Over the longer term, it is expected that the technology can be further scaled up to the megawatts range. Atlas makes its battery sustainable and environmentally friendly by using repurposed leftover material from the medical isotope industry to generate the electrons that carry the electrical charge. 

"One of the things that I love most about developing the Atlas Energy System is that its versatility allows it to be used to help find solutions to many energy challenges, from ocean monitoring to space exploration to powering portable battery packs for response crews in natural disasters," said Atlas CEO Ian Hamilton. "It was energizing to participate in Ocean Exchange and get to see so many talented innovators and such diversity of industry representatives come together to focus on global issues that affect our oceans."

Atlas is developing its battery at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory outside of Chicago as part of a federal program through the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy called Chain Reaction Innovations. This program gives startups access to world-class research and development tools at Argonne to accelerate disruptive innovations.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) supports early-stage research and development of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies that make energy more affordable and strengthen the reliability, resilience, and security of the U.S. electric grid.

EERE's Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) supports early-stage applied research & development of new materials, information, and processes that improve American manufacturing’s energy efficiency, as well as platform technologies for manufacturing clean energy products.

Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation's first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America's scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science.

The U.S. Department of Energy's 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, visit the Office of Science website.

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Solar Cell Discovery Opens a New Window to Powering Tomorrow's Cities

Windows that generate electricity may have a clearer path to prominent roles in buildings of the future due to an Argonne-led discovery.

How the Earth Stops High-Energy Neutrinos in Their Tracks

A research collaboration including scientists from Berkeley Lab has demonstrated that the Earth stops high-energy neutrinos - particles that only very rarely interact with matter.

Kentucky Researchers First to Produce High Grade Rare Earths From Coal

University of Kentucky researchers have produced nearly pure rare earth concentrates from Kentucky coal using an environmentally-conscious and cost-effective process, a groundbreaking accomplishment in the energy industry.

Watching Atoms Move in Hybrid Perovskite Crystals Reveals Clues to Improving Solar Cells

The discovery of nanoscale changes deep inside hybrid perovskites could shed light on developing low-cost, high-efficiency solar cells. Using X-ray beams and lasers, a team of researchers led by the University of California San Diego discovered how the movement of ions in hybrid perovskites causes certain regions within the material to become better solar cells than other parts.

Quantum Dots Amplify Light with Electrical Pumping

In a breakthrough development, Los Alamos scientists have shown that they can successfully amplify light using electrically excited films of the chemically synthesized semiconductor nanocrystals known as quantum dots.

The Challenge of Estimating Alaska's Soil Carbon Stocks

A geospatial analysis determined the optimal distribution of sites needed to reliably estimate Alaska's vast soil carbon.

Strain-Free Epitaxy of Germanium Film on Mica

Germanium was the material of choice in the early history of electronic devices, and due to its high charge carrier mobility, it's making a comeback. It's generally grown on expensive single-crystal substrates, adding another challenge to making it sustainably viable for most applications. To address this aspect, researchers demonstrate an epitaxy method that incorporates van der Waals' forces to grow germanium on mica. They discuss their work in the Journal of Applied Physics.

Unplugging the Cellulose Biofuel Bottleneck

Molecular-level understanding of cellulose structure reveals why it resists degradation and could lead to cost-effective biofuels.

Detailed View of Immune Proteins Could Lead to New Pathogen-Defense Strategies

Biologists at Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley used cryo-EM to resolve the structure of a ring of proteins used by the immune system to summon support when under attack, providing new insight into potential strategies for protection from pathogens. The researchers captured the high-resolution image of a protein ring, called an inflammasome, as it was bound to flagellin, a protein from the whiplike tail used by bacteria to propel themselves forward.

Unlocking the Secrets of Ebola

Scientists have identified a set of biomarkers that indicate which patients infected with the Ebola virus are most at risk of dying from the disease. The results come from one of the most in-depth studies ever of blood samples from patients with Ebola.

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Five Brookhaven Lab Scientists Named 2017 American Physical Society Fellows

Anatoly Frenkel, Morgan May, Rachid Nouicer, Eric Stach, and Peter Steinberg were recognized for their outstanding contributions to astrophysics, materials physics, and nuclear physics.

Argonne Appoints Chief of Staff

Megan Clifford has been named Chief of Staff at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, effective January 1, 2018.

Jefferson Lab Scientist Selected to Receive Francis Slack Award

Dr. Hari Areti, has been selected to receive the Francis G. Slack Award, established by the Southeastern Section of the American Physical Society, to honor excellence in service to Physics in the Southeastern U.S.

ORNL Wins Nine R&D 100 Awards

Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have received nine R&D 100 Awards in recognition of their significant advancements in science and technology.

Argonne Scientists Capture Several R&D 100 Awards

Innovative technologies developed by researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory recently earned several R&D 100 Awards.

Eight Los Alamos innovations win R&D 100 Awards

Eight Los Alamos National Laboratory technologies won R&D 100 Awards last week at R&D Magazine's annual ceremony in Orlando, Florida.

Physicist David Gates Named Editor-in-Chief of Plasma, a New Online Journal

Article announces David Gates' appointment as editor-in-chief of Plasma magazine

Argonne to Install Comanche System to Explore ARM Technology for High-Performance Computing

Argonne National Laboratory is collaborating with Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) to provide system software expertise and a development ecosystem for a future high-performance computing (HPC) system based on 64-bit ARM processors.

CANDLE Shines in 2017 HPCwire Readers' and Editors' Choice Awards

Argonne National Laboratory has been recognized in the annual <em>HPCwire</em> Readers' and Editors' Choice Awards, presented at the 2017 International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis (SC17), in Denver, Colorado.

SLAC's Helen Quinn Honored with 2018 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Physics

Helen Quinn, a professor emerita at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University, will receive the 2018 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Physics - one of eight prestigious Franklin Institute Awards that will be handed out in Philadelphia next April.

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The Challenge of Estimating Alaska's Soil Carbon Stocks

A geospatial analysis determined the optimal distribution of sites needed to reliably estimate Alaska's vast soil carbon.

Unplugging the Cellulose Biofuel Bottleneck

Molecular-level understanding of cellulose structure reveals why it resists degradation and could lead to cost-effective biofuels.

How Fungal Enzymes Break Down Plant Cell Walls

Lignocellulose-degrading enzyme complexes could improve biofuel production.

Stretching to Perfection of 2-D Semiconductors

Scientists use heat and mismatched surfaces to stretch films that can potentially improve the efficient operation of devices.

Simple is Beautiful in Quantum Computing

Defect spins in diamond were controlled with a simpler, geometric method, leading to faster computing.

The Effect of Hurricanes on Puerto Rico's Dry Forests

More frequent storms turn forests from carbon source to sink.

A Chemical Thermometer for Tropical Forests

Monoterpene measures how certain forests respond to heat stress.

Where a Leaf Lands and Lies Influences Carbon Levels in Soil for Years to Come

Whether carbon comes from leaves or needles affects how fast it decomposes, but where it ends up determines how long it's available.

Twisting Molecule Wrings More Power from Solar Cells

Readily rotating molecules let electrons last, resulting in higher solar cell efficiency.

Rules Are Only Suggestions in Heavy Elements

The arrangement of electrons in an exotic human-made element shows that certain properties of heavy elements cannot be predicted using lighter ones.


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