Berkeley Lab
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The Advanced Light Source is a Department of Energy-funded synchrotron facility that provides users from around the world access to the brightest beams of soft x-rays, together with hard x-rays and infrared, for scientific research and technology development in a wide range of disciplines.

Announcement

COVID-19 Status Update and Research Support

Due to a shelter-in-place order for the Bay Area, the ALS is closed to users until further notice. Only approved essential research is being conducted on a limited basis.

A number of the ALS-ENABLE crystallography beamlines, and the BioSAXS beamline, are available for remote collection and service operations in support of COVID-19 research. Please apply through the RAPIDD proposal process.

Department of Energy Basic Energy Sciences light sources want to ensure they are doing everything possible to enable research into the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the search for an effective vaccine or other treatment. The DOE supports research into structural biology in collaboration with the National Institutes of Health and other partners. This portal collects relevant structural biology resources in a single location, listing their basic characteristics and a point of contact for each. Read more

Direct Imaging of Fracture Closure in Reservoir Shales

Using x-ray microtomography at the ALS, researchers identified and characterized the microscale factors affecting fluid flow through shale fractures propped open with sand or ceramic spheres. A better understanding of propped fractures can lead to safer and more efficient recovery of hard-to-reach oil and gas resources. Read more »PPT-icon-35 PDF-icon-35

X-Ray Experiments Zero in on COVID-19 Antibodies

In the fight against SARS-CoV-2, scientists have been working on identifying neutralizing antibodies that could be used in preventative treatments or as post-exposure therapies. The latest findings, which include data from the ALS, indicate that antibodies from SARS survivors could potently block entry of SARS-CoV-2 into host cells. Read more »PPT-icon-35

Masks On, Ready to Work: Meet the People Supporting COVID-19 Science

David Richardson’s job is literally to make sure the light stays on. But it’s not just any light—it’s a very special x-ray light that could play a crucial role in an eventual treatment for COVID-19. Richardson is an operator at the ALS, and is one of a handful of workers providing essential services to scientists working on COVID-19-related research. Read more »

Porous Electrolyte Frameworks for All-Solid-State Batteries

With the help of microtomography at the ALS, researchers developed a method to produce a porous electrolyte framework that they used to construct a working all-solid-state battery. Such batteries potentially offer a higher energy density, longer cycle life, and better inherent safety than state-of-the-art lithium-ion batteries. Read more »

Study Leads to Firmer Grasp of Biochemical “Reactive Handle”

Protein crystallography provided new insight into a functional group of molecules that, if added to bacterial enzymes, could enable a variety of alterations to the bacteria’s polymer output. Tweaking enzymes to produce these “reactive handles” is a first step toward biosynthesizing diverse polymers with tailored properties. Read more »

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