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US, UK, Russian Federation Hold Trilateral Nuclear Security Best Practices Workshop

on February 22, 2013 - 11:39am

NNSA News:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representatives from the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence and Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation (Rosatom) met this week in Vienna, Austria, for their Seventh Annual Nuclear Security Best Practices Exchange.

The two-day workshop focused on overcoming challenges associated with securing nuclear materials worldwide.

NNSA Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Anne Harrington.

These workshops grew out of commitments in a 2005 U.S.-Russian Joint Statement on Nuclear Security.

NIST, DOJ Form Commission to Develop Guidelines for Forensic Labs

on February 21, 2013 - 6:48am

NIST News:

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) have announced the establishment of a National Commission on Forensic Science as part of a new initiative to strengthen and enhance the practice of forensic science.

The National Commission on Forensic Science will be composed of approximately 30 members, bringing together forensic science service practitioners, academic researchers, prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges and other relevant stakeholders to develop policy recommendations for the Attorney General.

The commission

LANL's Thursday Surplus Property Sale Cancelled

on February 20, 2013 - 2:33pm
LANL News:

Los Alamos National Laboratory's monthly surplus property sale scheduled for Thursday Feb. 21 has been cancelled because of unsafe conditions caused by snow and ice.

Weather permitting, the surplus property sale is scheduled for Feb. 28.

NNSA Completes Facilities and Infrastructure Recapitalization Program

on February 20, 2013 - 10:50am

NNSA News:

  • FIRP modernized NNSA sites, executed nearly 800 projects

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced the successful completion of the Facilities and Infrastructure Recapitalization Program (FIRP).

FIRP was created to reduce a substantial accumulation of backlogged facility maintenance, repair and demolition projects across NNSA’s eight sites. NNSA has enhanced mission reliability, improved safety and working conditions and reduced operating costs across the national nuclear security enterprise.

“One of the primary goals of FIRP was

Computer Modeling Reveals How Surprisingly Potent Hepatitis C Drug Works

on February 20, 2013 - 8:34am

LANL News:

A study by researchers from Los Alamos National Laboratory and a multinational team reveals how daclatasvir, a direct-acting antiviral agent in development for the treatment of hepatitis C virus (HCV), targets one of its proteins and causes the fastest viral decline ever seen with anti-HCV drugs – within 12 hours of treatment.

Chronic infection with hepatitis C virus affects about 150 million people worldwide. It is the leading cause of cirrhosis, liver cancer and liver transplants and results in some 350,000 deaths worldwide every year.

The team’s work reveals that daclatasvir

They Did It Again ... LAHS Students Head to DOE National Science Bowl!

on February 20, 2013 - 8:12am

Los Alamos High School regional winners, from left, Willie Zhao, Aaron Bao, Kevin Gao, Alex Swart, Alex Wang and their coach Kathy Boerigter. Courtesy/SNL

SANDIA LABS News:

  • Los Alamos High School Students Headed to DOE National Science Bowl

ALBUQUERQUE – Students from Los Alamos High School will represent New Mexico at the Department of Energy’s National Science Bowl in April.

The team took first place Saturday, Feb. 16, at the New Mexico Regional High School Competition after besting 28 teams representing 14 New Mexican high schools.

Students answered questions related to astronomy,

SFI Colloquium: 'Earth's Energy Imbalance, Climate Change, and Implications for Young People'

on February 19, 2013 - 7:12am

SFI News:

SFI Colloquium

Thursday, Feb. 21 • 3:30 p.m. • Noyce Conference Room in the Santa Fe Institute at 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

James Hansen, Columbia University Earth Institute will present, “Earth's Energy Imbalance, Climate Change, and Implications for Young People.”

Abstract: Improving observations of ocean heat content show that Earth is absorbing substantially more energy from the Sun than it is radiating to space as heat, implying that more global warming is in the pipeline.

Paleoclimate data and observations of ongoing climate change imply that continued

SFI: 'Efficient Coordination in Weakest Link Games' By Martin Strobel of Maastricht University

on February 18, 2013 - 10:29am

SFI News:

Wednesday, Feb. 20 • 12:15 p.m. • Collins Conference Room in the Santa Fe Institute at 1399 Hyde Park Road in Santa Fe.

Martin Strobel, Department of Economics, Maastricht University, will present "Efficient Coordination in Weakest Link Games."

Abstract: Coordination problems resembling weakest-link games are ubiquitous in the economy and society. Since they possess Pareto ranked equilibria it is important to understand if and when agents are able to coordinate on the efficient equilibrium.

Existing research on weakest-link games shows an overwhelming inability of people to

CryoSat-2 Mission Reveals Major Arctic Sea-Ice Loss

on February 15, 2013 - 8:00am

Sea ice scape photo by Dr. Katherine Giles, a research fellow at the Centre for Polar Observation and Modeling at University College London (UCL) and a member of the scientific team studying sea-ice loss. Courtesy/AGU

AGU News:

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Arctic sea ice volume has declined by 36 percent in the autumn and 9 percent in the winter between 2003 and 2012, an international team of scientists has discovered. 

Researchers used new data from the European Space Agency's CryoSat-2 satellite spanning 2010 to 2012, and data from NASA's ICESat satellite from 2003 to 2008 to estimate the volume of

‘New Mexico in Focus’ Tackles Future of National Labs

on February 15, 2013 - 7:59am

PBS News:

“New Mexico in Focus,” New Mexico PBS’ prime-time news magazine show covering the events, issues and people shaping life in New Mexico and the Southwest will take on an issue of special interest to Los Alamos this week.

One of the three topics to be discussed on the show is the Implications of a reduced nuclear stockpile and the future of New Mexico’s National Laboratories.

Does their mission need to change? How can the labs Influence that role?

The program will also focus on the latest New Mexico legislative efforts on education and water issues.

Hosted by Gene Grant, “New

Quantum Cryptography Put to Work for Electric Grid Security

on February 14, 2013 - 11:23am

The miniature transmitter communicates with a trusted authority to generate random cryptographic keys to encode and decode information. Courtesy/LANL

LANL News:

Recently, a Los Alamos National Laboratory quantum cryptography (QC) team successfully completed the first-ever demonstration of securing control data for electric grids using quantum cryptography.

The demonstration was performed in the electric grid test bed that is part of the Trustworthy Cyber Infrastructure for the Power Grid (TCIPG) project at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) that was set up under the

Scientist Will Discuss Naval Nuclear Terrorism

on February 14, 2013 - 7:27am

HIVE News:

Scientist Liviu Popa-Simil will present a talk on “Naval Nuclear Terrorism – Non-Conventional Nuclear Devices – Their Early Detection and Suppression” at a Brown Bag Lunch event today, Feb. 14 at The Hive, 134 N.M. 4 in White Rock.

The event is open to the public and free of charge. Lunch begins at 11:30 a.m. and the presentation starts at noon.

This is a subject of interest for homeland security and non-proliferation, bringing focus to the possibility of obtaining nuclear materials, types of non-conventional explosive devices, nuclear improvised explosive devices (IED), and

‘Slow Light’ Advance Could Speed Optical Computing, Telecommunications

on February 13, 2013 - 8:40am

Schematic of active optical control of terahertz waves in electromagnetically induced transparency metamaterials. Courtesy/LANL

LANL News:

  • Metamaterials provide active control of slow-light devices

Wireless communications and optical computing could soon get a significant boost in speed, thanks to “slow light” and specialized metamaterials through which it travels.

Researchers have made the first demonstration of rapidly switching on and off “slow light” in specially designed materials at room temperature.

This work opens the possibility to design novel, chip-scale, ultrafast devices

Register Now for 'Expanding Your Horizons' Conference

on February 13, 2013 - 7:39am
LANL News:
  • Explore the wonders of science, math
Los Alamos National Laboaratory is partnering with the New Mexico Network for Women in Science and Engineering, Los Alamos Women in Science, Los Alamos National Security, LLC, the LANL Foundation, Santa Fe Institute and Flow Science Inc., in Santa Fe, on EYH to increase awareness of, and interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities and careers.
 
The Santa Fe City Council also is a co-sponsor.
 
Up to 300 students from middle and high schools in Northern New Mexico will explore the wonders of science and math through

Udall Meets With Secretary of Defense Nominee

on February 12, 2013 - 6:29am

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall meets with Defense Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel Feb. 11. Courtesy/Udall's Office

U.S. SENATE News:

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., Monday issued the following statement after a meeting with Secretary of Defense nominee, Sen. Chuck Hagel:
 
“My meeting today with Senator Chuck Hagel was very useful. We had the opportunity to touch on a variety of issues facing our country and how New Mexico contributes to the strength of our national security.
 
“Senator Hagel conveyed that if confirmed, he will be committed to keeping safe, reliable and secure

Column: A Sensible Organization Is Not A Perfect Organization – Part II

on February 11, 2013 - 7:48am

A Sensible Organization Is Not A Perfect Organization: Drawing Boundary, Yes; Generating Unlimited Rules, Not So Much – Part II

By Elena Yang

Let me try to recap and explain the third law of thermodynamics (maybe I should say regurgitate?): To drive all imperfections out of a system requires an infinite amount of work. 

Scientists can remove thermal energy from a system and lower the temperature to close to zero absolute. However, the process is nonlinear in the sense that as the temperature drops, the effort required to remove the remaining thermal energy from the system increases. 

Lawmakers Request Strong New NNSA Administrator

on February 9, 2013 - 7:26am

CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION News:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Members of the New Mexico Congressional Delegation, Sen. Tom Udall, Sen. Martin Heinrich, Rep. Ben Ray Luján and Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, are asking President Obama to nominate a candidate to lead the Nuclear National Security Administration (NNSA) who will work with Congress to reform the agency and maintain the highest scientific and technical capabilities at Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories.

In a letter to President Obama, the federal lawmakers who represent the two labs say, “The NNSA has recently suffered from a series

LANL Scientists Make Major Step Toward Transforming Biomass-Derived Molecules into Fuels

on February 8, 2013 - 10:52am

Artist’s conception of the process: Researchers open up a component of the biofuel molecule, called a furan ring, to make it easier to chemically alter. Opening these rings into linear chains is a necessary step in the production of energy-dense fuels, so these linear chains can then be converted into alkanes used in gasoline and diesel fuel. Image by Josh Smith/LANL

LANL News:

  • Fuels synthesis insight can reduce costs and greenhouse gases

Scientists made a major step forward recently towards transforming biomass-derived molecules into fuels.

The team led by Los Alamos National Laboratory

LANL's Long-Term Strategy for Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability

on February 8, 2013 - 8:40am

Courtesy/LANL

LANL News:

Los Alamos National Laboratory's Long-Term Strategy is to be the sound environmental stewards required for accomplishing our national security mission.

The strategy is to protect human and environmental health by:

  • Cleaning up or stabilizing historical releases to the environment
  • Controlling current programs to ensure an impact to the environment which is as low as reasonably achievable and
  • Creating a sustainable future through pollution prevention, waste elimination, energy and water conservation, and fostering resilient ecosystems.

The strategy looks from two

LANL's Emergency Services Division Leader Charged With Battery; No Longer Employed

on February 7, 2013 - 11:53am
Tony Stanford
By CAROL A. CLARK
Los Alamos Daily Post
 
Police have filed charges against Anthony "Tony" R. Stanford, who lost his job as Emergency Operations Division Leader at Los Alamos National Laboratory Friday.

"Mr. Stanford is not currently an employee of the Laboratory. As general policy, because of employee privacy, the Laboratory does not discuss personnel matters," LANL Spokesperson Kevin Roark said.

Stanford, 56, was formally charged Monday, Feb. 4 with battery and assault against a female employee at the Laboratory.

The charges stem from a sexual harassment case filed against

Regional Coalition of LANL Communities Meets Feb. 15

on February 7, 2013 - 9:47am

COALITION News:

The next meeting of the Regional Coalition of LANL Communities is schedule for 9-11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 15 at the Santa Fe Community Foundation, 501 Halona St., in Santa Fe.

The Coalition is comprised of Los Alamos County, City of Espanola, City of Santa Fe, County of Santa Fe, Town of Taos, County of Taos and the Pueblo of Ohkay Owingeh.

The Coalition proactively addresses issues of the neighboring cities, counties and pueblos directly affected by Los Alamos National Laboratory site activities.

By working together, the governments are better poised to define the public

Lecture Details LANL's Collaboration on Italy's Great Cupola

on February 7, 2013 - 9:42am
Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral. Courtesy photo

LAHS NEWS:

Learn about the construction of Brunelleschi's great dome for Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral in Florence, Italy and how collaborations with scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory may help to save it.

The Los Alamos Historical Society will sponsor a talk by Carlo Blasi, Eva Coisson and Federica Ottoni, from the University of Parma, Italy.

The speakers are Italian scientists and historians of Renaissance architecture. The event will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15 at Fuller Lodge.

The speakers will tell the story of how

SFI's Science On Screen Series: Primer

on February 6, 2013 - 10:20am

Professor Cris Moore

SFI News:

The popular Science On Screen series in Santa Fe continues at 7 p.m. today, Feb. 6 with a presentation by Santa Fe Institute Professor Cris Moore in the Center for Contemporary Arts, 1050 Old Pecos Trail in Santa Fe.

Moore a physicist, mathematician, computer scientist, and author – providing a window into Shane Carruth’s twisty and unforgettable 2004 cult film Primer, in which two young inventors, working after hours in a garage, craft a machine that opens up a universe of possibility … and consequences.

For tickets and prices, call the CCA Box Office at

LANS: Funding Available for New Mexico Businesses

on February 6, 2013 - 8:26am

LANS News:

  • Los Alamos Venture Acceleration Fund accepting 2013 applications

The Venture Acceleration Fund (VAF) of Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS), the company that manages and operates Los Alamos National Laboratory for the National Nuclear Security Administration, is accepting applications for the 2013 calendar year.

Companies selected will receive awards that can range from $10,000 to $100,000 in order to commercialize technology and take it to market faster.

VAF helps innovative companies reach the next level of success through business and technology development

Luján Encourages Tech Transfer; Oversight of National Labs

on February 6, 2013 - 7:03am

Rep. Ben Ray Luján

CONGRESSIONAL News:

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico's Third District submitted the following statement into the record Tuesday during the House Energy and Commerce Committee mark-up of the Committee's oversight plan for the current Congressional session.

"Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the inclusion of 'management and operations issues at the Department of Energy' within the Committee's Oversight Plan for the 113th Congress.

"As Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is located in my district in Northern New Mexico, I am particularly interested in the

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