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US-Russia Partnership Reaches Key Milestone in Converting Russian Nuclear Weapons into US Nuclear Fuel

on June 25, 2013 - 10:26am
HEU. Courtesy/NNSA
 
NNSA News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced that it has monitored the elimination of more than 475 metric tons (MT) of Russian highly enriched uranium (HEU) under a landmark nuclear nonproliferation program, commonly known as Megatons to Megawatts.
 
With today’s 475 MT HEU milestone, deliveries under the U.S.-Russia HEU Purchase Agreement of low enriched uranium (LEU) produced from Russian HEU are 95 percent complete, and HEU roughly equivalent to 19,000 nuclear weapons has been permanently eliminated.

“The HEU Purchase

Former LANL Workers Plead Guilty to Atomic Energy Act Violations

on June 24, 2013 - 11:02am

Pedro Leonardo Mascheroni and Marjorie Roxby Mascheroni. Courtesy photo

FBI News:

ALBUQUERQUE—The Justice Department today announced that a scientist and his wife who both previously worked as contractors at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in New Mexico have pleaded guilty to charges under the Atomic Energy Act and other charges relating to their communication of classified nuclear weapons data to a person they believed to be a Venezuelan government official.

The guilty pleas, which were entered today by Pedro Leonardo Mascheroni, 77, a naturalized U.S.

SFI Lecture: Learn Why Time is a One-Way Street

on June 23, 2013 - 9:18am

Leonard Susskind

SFI News:

The Santa Fe Institute will present a Community Lecture at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 26 at the James A. Little Theater at SFI, 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

Leonard Susskind, director of the Stanford Institute for Theoretical Physics will speak on the topic, “Why is Time a One-Way Street?” Lectures are free and open to the public. Seating is limited.

Anyone can see that the past is different from the future. Anyone, that is, but theoretical physicists, whose equations do not seem to distinguish the past from the future, Susskind writes in his abstract.

Sara Del Valle Speaks on Epidemic Modeling

on June 22, 2013 - 9:35am

Sara Del Valle

SFI News:

Sara Del Valle Of Los Alamos National Laboratory will present a seminar on “Understanding the Impact of Human Behavior and Heterogeneous Mixing Patterns on Social Networks and Epidemics” at 12:15 p.m. Friday, June 27 in the Collins Conference Room at the Santa Fe Institute, 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

Social and mass media have recently played a crucial role in informing and influencing people’s perceptions about the spread of infectious diseases, Del Valle writes.

Community perception can influence human behavior, which can in turn impact the spread of an

Talk on Fisheries and Global Warming at SFI Monday

on June 21, 2013 - 9:36am

Daniel Pauly

SFI News:

Fisheries and Global Warming are the subjects of a seminar by Daniel Pauly of the University of British Columbia at the Santa Fe Institute.

The seminar will take place at 12:15 p.m. Monday, June 24 at SFI, 1399 Hyde Park in Santa Fe.

The multiple factors contributing to the crisis which besets global marine fisheries since the mid-1990s will be presented, along with key trends illustrating manifestations of that crisis.

Fisheries scientists, economists and serious policy-makers collectively know what is required to turn these trends around and to rebuild fish

Regional Coalition Heading to Nation's Capital to Push for Additional LANL Cleanup Funding

on June 21, 2013 - 6:44am

RCLC News:

SANTA FE - The Regional Coalition of LANL Communities is leading a 13-member delegation to Washington, D.C. to push for more cleanup funding for Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The group will meet with members of the New Mexico Congressional Delegation, as well as top officials at the Department of Energy and the National Nuclear Security Administration to press for the Coalition's top priority -- increased federal funding to continue environmental remediation across northern New Mexico.

"This type of work is incredibly important for the Regional Coalition and our effort has

LANL: Less is More - Novel Cellulose Structure Requires Fewer Enzymes to Process Biomass to Fuel

on June 20, 2013 - 12:05pm
An enzyme (shown in blue) pulls out individual cellulose chains (pink) from the pretreated nanofiber surface (green) and then breaks them apart into simple sugars. Photo by Shishir Chundawat/GLBRC
 
LANL News:
 
Improved methods for breaking down cellulose nanofibers are central to cost-effective biofuel production and the subject of new research from Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC).
 
Scientists are investigating the unique properties of crystalline cellulose nanofibers to develop novel chemical pretreatments and designer

Van Damages Overhang Above LANL's Community Programs Office

on June 20, 2013 - 10:37am

A LANS, LLC van scraped the overhang above the entrance to Los Alamos National Laboratory's Community Programs Office at 15th Street and Central Avenue this morning. Police were called to the scene to sort out the situation. Photo by Greg Kendall/ladailypost.com

Two areas on the overhang above the entrance to LANL's Community Programs Office were damaged this morning at 15th Street and Central Avenue. Photo by Greg Kendall/ladailypost.com

LANL's Physical Security Chief Retires

on June 19, 2013 - 11:27am
By CAROL A. CLARK
Los Alamos Daily Post

Physical Security Division Leader John (Jack) E. Killeen of Los Alamos National Laboratory retires Friday, June 21.

His career in security police forces has taken him on assignments across the globe. Killeen has planned his retirement to be just as hard driving. He'll take a brief break before embarking on a two month mountain bike ride through the Rocky Mountains from Banff, Canada to the Mexican border.

In October, Killeen will launch a consulting firm, JEK Enterprises, LLC, through which he will apply his skills in consultation and program

Artists and Scientists Share Insights Into Creative Process

on June 19, 2013 - 11:26am
From left, Luis Bettencourt, Kade Twist and Valerie Plame Wilson. Courtesy photo

SFI News:

In the second annual discussion between the Santa Fe Institute and the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, SFI Professor Luís M.A. Bettencourt and Cherokee artist Kade L. Twist will explore the creative process in art and science and wonder whether Native artists and complexity scientists are so far apart.

The discussion is moderated by SFI’s Valerie Plame Wilson.

Chaos to Complexity: Artists and Scientists Share Insights Into the Creative Process is 2-4 p.m.

Bradbury Presents Lunchtime Lecture

on June 19, 2013 - 10:03am

LANL Director Testifies Before Senate Subcommittee

on June 18, 2013 - 10:21am

LANL Director Charlie McMillan testifies June 1 before a Senate subcommittee. Courtesy/LANL

LANL's June Connections News:

Los Alamos National Laboratory Director Charlie McMillan and the directors of Sandia and Lawrence Livermore national laboratories recently spoke before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, Committee on Armed Services.

The purpose of the hearing was to to receive testimony on NNSA management of its national security laboratories and to review the budget request for Fiscal Year 2014.

See the full story in the June Connections at:

SFI Seminar: LANL Scientist Speaks on Statistical Inference

on June 18, 2013 - 10:05am

David Wolpert

SFI News:

The Santa Fe Institute presents a free seminar titled Statistical Inference: The Hidden World within Science.

David Wolpert of Los Alamos National Laboratory is an SFI External Professor and will present the seminar at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, June 20 in the Noyce Conference Room at SFI, 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

Statistical inference — machine learning — is central to science in that it is the foundation of data analysis. Wolpert argues that its relationship with science is both far broader and far deeper.

He illustrates this breadth by showing how it can be

SFI Colloquium Hosts Two Seminars This Week

on June 17, 2013 - 8:59am

Tullis Onstott

SFI News:

The Santa Fe Institute is hosting two seminars this week. The first, by Princeton scientist Tullis Onstott will explore “Life in Earth's Deep Biosphere: From Bacterial Finches to Bactivorous Meiofauna.”

The talk is 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 18 in the Noyce Conference Room at the Santa Fe Institute, 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

For more than 10 years, scientists have been exploring this subterranean desert down to depths of 5 km and finding within it oases inhabited by very tenacious life forms.

LANL Website Wins Best in Show

on June 16, 2013 - 6:58am

STC News:

The Society for Technical Communication honored employees who worked on the Los Alamos National Laboratory external/public website in a ceremony at its annual conference in May in Atlanta, Ga.

The website won a Best in Show award in the prestigious International Summit Awards Competition. The STC International Summit Awards Competition encourages and recognizes excellence in the industry and is open to all technical communication professionals.

The honorees include LANL employees Ann Rafferty, web project lead, Lilly Anaya, web team leader and Monika Bittman, senior web

College Students Attend Los Alamos Dynamics Summer School at LANL

on June 14, 2013 - 12:05pm

Katy Korkos of the Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce discusses local businesses and details the many activities available in town  for college students gathered at Tuesday's day-long orientation at the Los Alamos Research Park. The students are participating in the LANL/UCSD Los Alamos Dynamics Summer School Engineering Institute. During Tuesday's orientation, the students heard from a variety of speakers including LANL's Associate Director of Engineering Steve Girrens who welcomed them to the Laboratory. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

College students from across the country are

LANL Honors Community Volunteers

on June 13, 2013 - 8:17am
A tasty breakfast prepared by Daniel's Cafe was served to community volunteers being honored at the 2012 Vecinos Volunteers Event hosted Wednesday by Los Alamos Natinal Laboratory at Fuller Lodge. Current and retired Laboratory employees submitted their volunteer hours worked at a charitable organization. Los Alamos National Security, LLC, rewarded those efforts through a monetary contribution to the organizations. LANS contributed $177,450 to 239 nonprofit organizations this year. Since the program's inception in 2008, LANL volunteers have logged 1.2 million hours of volunteer services.

No SFI Public Lecture Tonight

on June 11, 2013 - 11:49am

SFI News:

The announcement of an SFI public lecture this evening, June 11, was in error.

The next lecture is scheduled for Wednesday, June 26.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

-The Santa Fe Institute

World Oceans Month Brings Mixed News for Oysters

on June 11, 2013 - 9:26am

Oysters at hatcheries in Oregon are showing the effects of ocean acidification. Courtesy/OSU

Pacific oysters, healthy at Taylor Shellfish Farms; will the oysters survive ocean acidification? Courtesy/Taylor Shellfish Farm, NOAA

NSF News:

  • Ocean acidification inhibits shell formation, but interventions at hatcheries may offset some effects, scientists find

In World Oceans Month, there's mixed news for the Pacific Northwest oyster industry.

For the past several years, it has struggled with significant losses due to ocean acidification.

LANS Provides Over $180,000 to Nonprofits

on June 10, 2013 - 2:21pm

Los Alamos National Laboratory employees Cynthia Fuentes, left, and Brian Foley help fill sandbags at Santa Clara Pueblo in 2011. They are assisted by Brenden Baca, 9. Courtesy photo

LANL News:

  • Employees and retirees perform 270,000 volunteer hours

Nonprofit organizations will receive more than $180,000 from Los Alamos National Security (LANS), LLC during a recognition event beginning at 9:30 a.m. June 12, at Fuller Lodge in downtown Los Alamos.

LANS contributions are determined by the number of volunteer hours logged by Los Alamos National Laboratory employees and retirees through a

Bradbury Kicks Off 'Downtown Friday Night'

on June 10, 2013 - 12:50pm

Staff Report

Find out what Los Alamos has to offer from 5-8 p.m. at the Bradbury Science Museum, just prior to the Friday Los Alamos Summer Concert in downtown Los Alamos.

The community collaboration was designed to introduce an opportunity to, “Discover Los Alamos,” especially for new families to Los Alamos, LANL post-doctoral fellows and summer students.

The hands-on event will be a hub of community resources, opportunities, networking and activities.

Those who work with the clubs, organizations and businesses involved in the project will be on hand to answer questions, provide

NNSA's Mike Duvall Speaks to Los Alamos Rotarians

on June 10, 2013 - 7:09am

Mike Duvall, assistant manager for Safeguards and Security at NNSA's Los Alamos Field Office was the featured speaker at the May 28 Rotary Club meeting at the Dixie Girl Restaurant. Duval presented a program on Terrorism and Security: International, Homeland, and Cyber. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Staff Report:

Former New Mexico Homeland Security and Emergency Management Cabinet Secretary Mike Duvall presented a program on Terrorism and Security: International, Homeland, and Cyber during a May 28 meeting of the Rotary Club of Los Alamos.

Duvall, left the position with the state Jan.

Yang: From Branding To Identity

on June 10, 2013 - 7:06am
From Branding To Identity
By ELENA YANG

I appreciate people taking the time to give me feedback. The branding piece last week evoked some strong feelings. 

I cannot claim that a large number of readers resonated with my piece; I can only say that the people who responded to me by and large shared my expressed sentiment. One of the suggestions that struck me – and I have heard this view repeatedly since we moved here in 2002 – is that this town takes forever to make decisions.

Based on my brief sojourn at the Lab, as well as the steady stream of stories I have been hearing for more than a

SFI Seminar: The Slum as Organism

on June 9, 2013 - 9:30am

SFI Seminar

Monday, June 10, 2013 • 12:15 p.m. • Collins Conference Room, Santa Fe Institute, 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

Jan Nijman Director, Center for Urban Studies, University of Amsterdam

The Slum as Organism

Abstract: Urban slums have proliferated throughout the developing world in cities of the so-called global south. In Mumbai, India, over half of the population of 12 million is now said to live in slums, a greater number in absolute and relative terms than ever before, despite a range of successive policies aimed at slum eradication or rehabilitation.

LANL: New Phase Of Matter Discovered In Superconducting Material

on June 9, 2013 - 8:36am

Arkady Shekhter setting up the resonant ultrasound measurement in a flow cryostat. Courtesy/LANL

LANL News:

  • Researchers probe ‘pseudogap’ phase boundary, solve decades-old mystery

Tiny crystals, probed with a device called a resonant ultrasound spectrometer, are helping solve the long-time mystery of “pseudogap behavior” in copper oxide superconductors.

Described by an international team including Los Alamos scientists in this week’s Nature magazine, the research explored a compelling question in superconductivity, that of the strange metallic behavior of copper oxide (cuprate) materials

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