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Newswise Special Wire
Monday, August 3, 2020

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Newswise Technology and Engineering Wire for 03-Aug-2020

Newswise Technology and Engineering Wire

Tech news for the public and news media. More stories can be found at the Newswise Technology News Source and the Engineering News Source.


Influx of Electric Vehicles Accelerates Need for Grid Planning

A new PNNL report says the western U.S. bulk power system can reliably support projected growth of up to 24 million electric vehicles through 2028, but challenges will arise as EV adoption grows beyond that threshold. This study is the most comprehen...

– Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Electric Vehicles at Scale – Phase 1 Analysis: High EV Adoption Impacts on the Western U.S. Power Grid

Embargo expired on 29-Jul-2020 at 17:00 ET

Novel magnetic stirrer speaks to lab equipment

A current problem for a wide range of chemists is when stirring a solution in the laboratory there is a need to check the properties of the solution and monitor how they change.

– University of Warwick

ACS Sensors

For solar boom, scrap silicon for this promising mineral

Cornell University engineers have found that photovoltaic wafers in solar panels with all-perovskite structures outperform photovoltaic cells made from state-of-the-art crystalline silicon, as well as perovskite-silicon tandem cells, which are stacke...

– Cornell University

Science Advances, July 2020

Can a quantum strategy help bring down the house?

In a paper published this week in the journal Physical Review A, the researchers lay out a theoretical scenario in which two players, playing cooperatively against the dealer, can better coordinate their strategies using a quantumly entangled pair of...

– Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Physical Review A

‘Fool’s Gold’ May Be Valuable After All

University of Minnesota researchers have electrically transformed the abundant and low-cost non-magnetic material iron sulfide, also known as “fool’s gold,” into a magnetic material that could be the first step in creating valuable new material...

– University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering

Science Advances

FSU engineering researchers harness wind data to help meet energy needs in Florida

Florida is one of several states in the Southeast where wind energy is virtually nonexistent, which is one reason wind farms have not been an economically viable energy source in the region. But a new study from the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering s...

– Florida State University

Applied Energy

New Algorithms Could Reduce Polarization Driven By Information Overload

As the volume of available information expands, the fraction a person is able to absorb shrinks. To break this cycle, computer scientists say we need new algorithms that prioritize a broader view over fulfilling consumer biases.

– Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

VIDEO AND TRANSCRIPT AVAILABLE: Alzheimer’s Blood Test: An expert panel with WUSTL, RUPress: July 28, 3PM EDT

Alzheimer’s Blood Test: An expert panel with WUSTL, RUPress: July 28, 3PM EDT

– Newswise

ORNL-produced plutonium-238 to help power Perseverance on Mars

Mars 2020 will be the first NASA mission that uses ORNL-produced plutonium-238, the first U.S.-produced Pu-238 in three decades. ORNL's Pu-238 will help power Perseverance across the Red Planet's surface.

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Engineers find thinner tissues in replacement heart valves create problematic flutter

Iowa State and University of Texas engineers have developed computational models of replacement heart valves to examine the performance of biological tissues built into the valves. They found thinner tissues create problematic flutter.

– Iowa State University

Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences

New insights into wound healing

Research from a multidisciplinary team led by Washington University may provide new insights into wound healing, scarring and how cancer spreads.

– Washington University in St. Louis

ACS Nano, July 28, 2020; 5-T32-HL07081-38; CMMI-154857; U01CA202177; U54CA193417; R01CA232256; R01EB017753

New fabrication method brings single-crystal perovskite devices closer to viability

Nanoengineers at UC San Diego developed a new method to fabricate perovskites as single-crystal thin films, which are more efficient for use in solar cells and optical devices than the current state-of-the-art polycrystalline forms of the material.

– University of California San Diego


Keep safe and cool in the pool: novel chip sensor makes swimming pools safer

A new microchip that enables continuous monitoring of pH and chlorine levels in swimming pools will vastly improve water safety and hygiene for more than 2.7 million Australians as new research shows it can deliver consistent and accurate pool chemis...

– University of South Australia


Computational gene study suggests new pathway for COVID-19 inflammatory response

A team led by Dan Jacobson of the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory used the Summit supercomputer at ORNL to analyze genes from cells in the lung fluid of nine COVID-19 patients compared with 40 control patients.

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory


Metal-Breathing Bacteria Could Transform Electronics, Biosensors, and More

When the Shewanella oneidensis bacterium “breathes” in certain metal and sulfur compounds anaerobically, the way an aerobic organism would process oxygen, it produces materials that could be used to enhance electronics, electrochemical energy sto...

– Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)


How clean water technologies could get a boost from X-ray synchrotrons

In a new perspective, SLAC and University of Paderborn scientists argue that research at synchrotrons could help improve water-purifying materials in ways that might not otherwise be possible.

– SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

Joule, July-2020

New machine learning method allows hospitals to share patient data -- privately

Penn Medicine researchers have shown that federated learning is successful specifically in the context of brain imaging, by being able to analyze magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of brain tumor patients and distinguish healthy brain tissue from...

– Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Nature's Scientific Reports, July-2020

Solving a DNA mystery

"A watched pot never boils," as the saying goes, but that was not the case for UC Santa Barbara researchers watching a "pot" of liquids formed from DNA. In fact, the opposite happened.

– University of California, Santa Barbara

Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences

Study identifies top reasons for sewer line failure

Concrete sewer pipes around the world are most likely to fail either because their concrete is not strong enough or because they can’t handle the weight of trucks that drive over them, a new study indicates.

– Ohio State University

Structure and Infrastructure Engineering

Redesigning lithium-ion battery anodes for better performance

In a new study, a team led by researchers at Argonne National Laboratory has made discoveries concerning a potential new, higher-capacity anode material, which would allow lithium-ion batteries to have a higher overall energy capacity.

– Argonne National Laboratory

Nano Energy

Laser Inversion enables Multi-Materials 3D Printing

Selective laser sintering is one of the most widely used processes in additive manufacturing, but it is limited to printing with a single material at a time. Columbia engineers have used their expertise in robotics to develop a new approach to overco...

– Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science

Additive Manufacturing Dec 2020

Randomness theory could hold key to internet security

In a new paper, Cornell Tech researchers identified a problem that holds the key to whether all encryption can be broken – as well as a surprising connection to a mathematical concept that aims to define and measure randomness.

– Cornell University

IEEE Symposium on Foundations of Computer Science, Nov-2020

New Research in Origami Metamaterials Promises Wide Implications

New research by the Georgia Institute of Technology and Northwestern Engineering expands the understanding of origami structures, opening possibilities for mechanical metamaterials to be used in soft robotics and medical devices.

– Georgia Institute of Technology


Argonne and Sentient Science develop game-changing computer modeling program to improve discovery and design of new materials

Researchers collaborated to create a software program to accelerate discovery and design of new materials for applications allowing for a far more comprehensive understanding of materials from atomistic to mesoscopic scale than ever before.

– Argonne National Laboratory

Startup’s contact tracing tech tracks workplace distancing

A Cornell University-based startup has expanded the features of its platform’s technology to fit the times in which we live, ensuring social distancing in the workplace and enabling companies to bring employees back to work safely amid COVID-19.

– Cornell University

Visual analytics tool plucks elusive patterns from elaborate datasets

An ORNL team developed CrossVis, an open-source, customizable visual analytics system that analyzes numerical, categorical and image-based data while providing multiple dynamic, coordinated views of these and other data types.

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Graphics and Visual Computing, June-2020

New Mars rover tool will zap rocks to investigate planet’s past habitability

When NASA’s Perseverance rover launches from Florida on its way to Mars, it will carry aboard what is likely the most versatile instrument ever made to better understand the Red Planet’s past habitability.

– Los Alamos National Laboratory

Features and Experts

Engineers developing no-touch, mail-in, fast-scan test for COVID-19, other outbreaks

Engineers are developing a no-touch, mail-in, fast-scan diagnostic sensing system that could be used to quickly test for COVID-19 or other outbreaks. The system would also produce a real-time outbreak map with demographic details.

– Iowa State University

NSF: PFI (RAPID) 2029532

Ground System for NASA’s Roman Space Telescope Completes Major Review

NASA’s Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope has just successfully completed a preliminary design review of the mission’s ground systems, including the Science Operations Center that will be hosted by the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in ...

– Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI)

NIH delivering new COVID-19 testing technologies to meet U.S. demand

The National Institutes of Health is investing $248.7 million in new technologies to address challenges associated with COVID-19 testing (which detects SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus).

– National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering

Safer, longer-lasting energy storage requires focus on interface of advanced materials

More studies at the interface of battery materials, along with increased knowledge of the processes at work, are unleashing a surge of knowledge needed to more quickly address the demand for longer-lasting portable electronics, electric vehicles and ...

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Nature Materials Reviews, Jul-2020

Digital Twin program brings new life to old aircraft

Wichita State University's National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR)'s Digital Twin program is using two Blackhawk helicopters and a B-1 Bomber to help the military maintain and repair similar aircraft.

– Wichita State University

S&T, EPA are Helping Coast Guard Prepare to Clean Up Following an Anthrax Attack

S&T and EPA collaborate in a joint project to help the Coast Guard decontaminate assets after a bioterrorist attack.

– Homeland Security's Science And Technology Directorate

Virtual lecture series finale connects interns to ongoing COVID-19 research

Students attending the last 2020 Office of Science Summer Internship Virtual Lecture Series seminar learned about how national laboratories are coming together to fight COVID-19.

– Argonne National Laboratory

The United Kingdom Bans Huawei From 5G Networks

Amid pressure by the United States, the coronavirus pandemic, and China's crackdown on Hong Kong, the United Kingdom has banned Huawei equipment from its 5G networks.

– Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)

Adam Segal, "The United Kingdom Bans Huawei From 5G Networks", Blog Post, Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program,, July 27, 2020.

The ECS Community Adapts and Advances

Elizabeth Biddinger Assistant Professor, Chemical Engineering Department, City College, The City University of New York (CUNY), shares how she and her CUNY community are adapting to—and planning to move beyond—the current situation.

Expert Available

– The Electrochemical Society

The Battery Community Connects in New Ways

In our series, The ECS Community Adapts and Advances, Venkat Viswanathan shares stories of unexpected opportunities and inspiration. To help early career researchers make progress while labs are shuttered and new lab work isn’t possible, he is crea...

Expert Available

– The Electrochemical Society

ECS Community on the Frontline of COVID-19 Research

In our series, The ECS Community Adapts and Advances, Netzahualcóyotl (Netz) Arroyo-Currás talks about his lab’s challenge as part of the pandemic response of Johns Hopkins Medicine, which is at the forefront of COVID-19 research. Soon after cl...

Expert Available

– The Electrochemical Society

Magnum Venus Products licenses ORNL co-developed additive manufacturing technologies

The Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory has licensed two additive manufacturing-related technologies that aim to streamline and ramp up production processes to Knoxville-based Magnum Venus Products, Inc., a global manufacturer of f...

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory

‘Killer acquisitions’ top of mind as big tech faces Congress

– Cornell University

Announcements and Events

NSF Grant Backs funcX — A Smart, Automated Delegator for Computational Research

Computational scientific research is no longer one-size-fits-all. The massive datasets created by today’s cutting-edge instruments and experiments — telescopes, particle accelerators, sensor networks and molecular simulations — aren’t best pr...

– Globus


ISPOR Announces Virtual ISPOR Asia Pacific 2020

ISPOR—The Professional Society for Health Economics and Outcomes Research announced its Virtual ISPOR Asia Pacific 2020 event programming today. Registration is now open for the virtual event that will be held 14-16 September 2020.

– ISPOR—The Professional Society for Health Economics and Outcomes Research

Virtual ISPOR Asia Pacific 2020, Sep-2020

Berkeley Lab Part of Multi-Institutional Team Awarded $60M for Solar Fuels Research

The Department of Energy has awarded $60 million to a new solar fuels initiative – called the Liquid Sunlight Alliance (LiSA) – led by Caltech in close partnership with Berkeley Lab. LiSA will build on the foundational work of the Joint Center fo...

– Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Rutgers’ Eagleton Institute of Politics Announces 2020-2021 Science and Politics Fellows

Rutgers’ Eagleton Institute of Politics announced that seven scientists have been selected for the 2020-2021 cohort of Eagleton Science and Politics Fellows. Over the next year, the Eagleton Science Fellows will serve as full-time science advisors ...

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Missouri S&T wins $1.5 million award to create cutting-edge spectrometer

Missouri S&T has received a $1.5 million award from the National Science Foundation to develop a new, state-of-the-art, rotational microwave spectrometer on its campus in Rolla.The instrument will be used by several universities to collect some of th...

– Missouri University of Science and Technology

NSF Award Abstract #2019072

Johns Hopkins APL Ranked No. 3 on Fast Company’s Best Workplaces for Innovators List

The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory secured the No. 3 spot on Fast Company’s 2020 Best Workplaces for Innovators list — marking the second consecutive year that APL appeared among businesses and organizations around the globe honored for...

– Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Sparking girls’ interest in computing through ‘social wearables’

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded a $1.2 million grant to a team led by Katherine Isbister, professor of computational media at UC Santa Cruz, to develop a summer camp for middle school girls focused on computational technology in a s...

– University of California, Santa Cruz

S&T Releases Solicitation to Address Emerging Covid-19 Response Needs and Mitigation

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, DHS S&T is seeking groundbreaking solutions to address current and future operational needs.

– Homeland Security's Science And Technology Directorate

Health Information Professionals Reimagine Personalized Learning Immersion Experience With MLA ’20 vConference & Exhibits

While remaining laser-focused on the well-being of its membership base and future of the health information profession, the leadership of the Chicago-based Medical Library Association (MLA) revaluated their instructional design principles and member ...

– Medical Library Association

PNNL’s Vapor Detection Technology Named GeekWire’s ‘Innovation of the Year’

A PNNL-developed technology that can quickly detect explosive vapors, deadly chemicals and illicit drugs with unparalleled accuracy has been named the 2020 Innovation of the Year by GeekWire, the Seattle-based technology news company.

– Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Young Investigator

Tingyi Gu, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Delaware, has been selected for the Army Research Office Young Investigator Program. This prestigious award goes to early-career researchers pursuing fundam...

– University of Delaware

Search Begins for Next Lab Director

The search for the next director of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is underway, Charlene Zettel, University of California (UC) regent and chair of Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC (LLNS) announced today.

– Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Ning Xu Selected Fellow of the American Chemical Society

Ning Xu of the Actinide Analytical Chemistry group at Los Alamos has been selected as a member of the 2020 class of Fellows of the American Chemical Society (ACS).

– Los Alamos National Laboratory

Grant fuels digital transformation, applied learning opportunities

Wichita State University was awarded a $250,000 grant from the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Institute, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Defense, to build a workforce development database.

– Wichita State University





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