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    Microbial Evolution: Nature Leads, Nurture Supports

    Microbial Evolution: Nature Leads, Nurture Supports

    Based on an extensive study across environments, from mixed conifer forest to high-desert grassland, the team suggests that microbes aren't so different from larger, more complex forms of life. That is, in determining species traits, nature takes the lead, while nurture plays a supporting role.

    Building a Scale to Weigh Superheavy Elements

    Building a Scale to Weigh Superheavy Elements

    Scientists made the first direct, definitive measurement of the weight, also known as the mass number, for two superheavy nuclei.

    Survey Delivers on Dark Energy with Multiple Probes

    Survey Delivers on Dark Energy with Multiple Probes

    The Dark Energy Survey has combined its four primary cosmological probes for the first time in order to constrain the properties of dark energy.

    Crossing the Great Divide Between Model Studies and Applied Reactors in Catalysis

    Crossing the Great Divide Between Model Studies and Applied Reactors in Catalysis

    A team devised a way to bridge the gap between two extremes. Using their approach, they can predict catalyst performance across a wider range of temperatures and pressures.

    Tiny, Sugar-Coated Sheets Selectively Target Pathogens

    Tiny, Sugar-Coated Sheets Selectively Target Pathogens

    Researchers developed molecular flypaper that recognizes and traps viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens.

    Getting Metal Under Graphite's Skin

    Getting Metal Under Graphite's Skin

    Some metals need to be protected from the atmosphere. Exposure leads to damage that ruins their unique properties. Controllably forming metal islands just under the surface of graphite protects the metals. This allows these metals to take on new roles in ultrafast quantum computers. It also means new roles in magnetic, catalytic, or plasmonic materials.

    Atomically Packed Boundaries Resist Cracking

    Atomically Packed Boundaries Resist Cracking

    Scientists devised specialized X-ray mapping techniques. They determined that boundaries associated with regions where atoms are closely packed together most readily resist cracking. This analysis revealed that when a crack encounters such a boundary, it's deflected to a less direct path and crack growth is slowed.

    End-run Spreads Lithium Throughout Battery Electrodes

    End-run Spreads Lithium Throughout Battery Electrodes

    Scientists used chemically sensitive X-ray microscopy to map lithium transport during battery operation.

    Knowledgebase Is Power for Nuclear Reactor Developers

    Knowledgebase Is Power for Nuclear Reactor Developers

    Six new nuclear reactor technologies are planned to commercially deploy between 2030 and 2040. ORNL's Weiju Ren heads a project managing structural materials information. This conversation explores challenges and opportunities in sharing nuclear materials knowledge internationally.

    Excited Atoms Rush Independently to New Positions

    Excited Atoms Rush Independently to New Positions

    How atoms react to a sudden burst of light shows scientists how the larger material might act in sensors, data storage devices, and more.

    Chaos Ensues When Lasers and Plasma Meet

    Chaos Ensues When Lasers and Plasma Meet

    Warp+PXR dramatically improves the accuracy of the simulations compared to those typically used in plasma research. Now, researchers can simulate lasers' interactions with plasma with much higher precision.

    This Superconductor Does Not Take Light Lightly

    This Superconductor Does Not Take Light Lightly

    Superconductors are materials that show no resistance to electrical current when cooled. Recently, scientists discovered a new superconducting material. Now, scientists have found that when exposed to low-energy ultraviolet light, the material acts as a superconductor at higher temperatures.

    Nuclear Physics Detector Tech Used in Cancer Treatment Monitoring System

    Nuclear Physics Detector Tech Used in Cancer Treatment Monitoring System

    The OARtrac(r) system includes technologies that are based on a novel application of scintillating material in fiber form. Doctors can insert these scintillating fibers into the human body via a catheter to monitor the radiation that cancer patients receive in a range of hard-to-reach areas.

    Machine Learning Helps Create Detailed, Efficient Models of Water

    Machine Learning Helps Create Detailed, Efficient Models of Water

    A team devised a way to better model water's properties. They developed a machine-learning workflow that offers accurate and computationally efficient models.

    Cultivating the Assembly Landscape

    Cultivating the Assembly Landscape

    For the first time, a team determined and predictably manipulated the energy landscape of a material assembled from proteins. Designing materials that easily and reliably morph on command could benefit water filtration, sensing applications, and adaptive devices.

    A Change in Structure for a Superheavy Magnesium Isotope

    A Change in Structure for a Superheavy Magnesium Isotope

    A recent measurement exploring the structure of magnesium-40 has shown a surprising change in the structure relative to expectations. This unanticipated change could be pointing to physics missing from our theories, such as the effects of weak binding between particles.

    Bursts of Light Shape Walls Between Waves of Charge

    Bursts of Light Shape Walls Between Waves of Charge

    To better store data, scientists need ways to change a material's properties suddenly. For example, they want a material that can go from insulator to conductor and back again. Now, they devised a surprisingly simple way of flipping a material from one state into another, and back again, with flashes of light. A single light pulse turns thin sheets of tantalum disulfide from its original (alpha) state into a mixture of alpha and beta states. Domain walls separate the two states. A second pulse of light dissolves the walls, and the material returns to its original state.

    New Geometric Model Improves Predictions of Fluid Flow in Rock

    New Geometric Model Improves Predictions of Fluid Flow in Rock

    Supercomputer validates mathematical approach for describing geological features.

    Deep Learning Reveals Mysteries of Deep Space

    Deep Learning Reveals Mysteries of Deep Space

    How do you determine the measurable "things" that describe the nature of our universe? To answer that question, researchers used CosmoFlow, a deep learning technique, running on a National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center supercomputer. They analyzed large, complex data sets from 3-D simulations of the distribution of matter to answer that question. The team showed that CosmoFlow offers a new platform to gain a deeper understanding of the universe.

    At DOE's Manufacturing Demonstration Facility, science drives next-gen creations

    At DOE's Manufacturing Demonstration Facility, science drives next-gen creations

    American ingenuity is providing radical productivity improvements from advanced materials and robotic systems developed at the Department of Energy's Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

    High-Fidelity Multiphysics Simulations to Improve Nuclear Reactor Safety and Economics

    High-Fidelity Multiphysics Simulations to Improve Nuclear Reactor Safety and Economics

    Engineers can model heat distribution in reactor designs with fewer or no approximations.

    Tiny Vortices Could One Day Haul Microscopic Cargo

    Tiny Vortices Could One Day Haul Microscopic Cargo

    The behavior of active magnetic liquids suggests new pathways to transport particles across surfaces and build materials that self-heal.

    How Does Mother Nature Tackle the Tough Triple Bond Found in Nitrogen?

    How Does Mother Nature Tackle the Tough Triple Bond Found in Nitrogen?

    Researchers demystify how the nitrogenase enzyme breaks bonds to learn a better way to make ammonia.

    A Detailed View of the Ancestor of Photosynthesis

    A Detailed View of the Ancestor of Photosynthesis

    The symmetrical light-gathering, energy-producing complex offers insights into how modern photosystems evolved.

    Unique Interface and Unexpected Behavior Help Explain How Heavy Metals Act

    Unique Interface and Unexpected Behavior Help Explain How Heavy Metals Act

    Three types of water molecules form around a platinum-based ion, offering insights for waste processing and metal refining.