To study the origins of different isotope ratios among the elements that make up today’s smorgasbord of planets, moons, comets, asteroids, and interplanetary ice and dust, a team of scientists from the University of California, San Diego is using ALS Chemical Dynamics Beamline 9.0.2 to mimic radiation from the protosun when the solar system was forming.Read more…
The Importance of Domain Size and Purity in High-Efficiency Organic Solar Cells
Scientists have long believed that the key to high efficiency in polymer-based organic photovoltaic cells rests in the purity of the charge donor and acceptor domains. Now, researchers have demonstrated that impure domains, if made sufficiently small, can also lead to improved performance. Read more…
After 20 years of photoemission research at Beamline 7, ALS Senior Scientist Eli Rotenberg has taken on a new role in overseeing a complete rebuild of the beamline and its endstations. The project will expand Beamline 7’s footprint to include three endstations, three preparation chambers, and space to expand. The new setup will offer 1000-times better spatial resolution and at least 10-times better energy resolution.Read more…
Industry @ ALS: Moving Memristor and Neuristor Research Forward
HP Labs researchers have tackled a decades-old mystery relying on powerful ALS microscopy techniques to better understand the fourth basic circuit element: the memristor. The memristor (short for “memory resistor”) joins the other passive elements–the capacitor, the resistor, and the inductor–to create a device with the ability to “remember” changes even when it loses power. Commercial development based on memristors offers the promise of computing systems with highly advanced energy efficiency and memory retention. Memristor-based memory could be a strong competitor for current flash memory.Read the article.
As scientists, we promote our results all the time in the form of journal articles, correspondence with colleagues, and presentations. But how about an entirely different venue: science fiction. In short stories and novels you can teach the readers about great science and tell a good yarn at the same time. You can extrapolate your results into the far future, or time travel into the past, or speculate about how the world would be different under different physical laws.
The Diamond Light Source (DLS) in the UK holds a short story contest perfect for beamline scientists and users (right, Ralston holds the compilation of 2011 entries, which is now publicly available in the ALS lobby). The main requirement of the story is that it be set at the Diamond synchrotron. Anyone who works at a synchrotron knows exactly what it is like to work around beamlines, so even if you haven’t been to the DLS, you know the setting. (Note: Corie won the 2011 competition with her story “The Sound of Science.”-ed.)
And while you’re at it, send your (non-science-fiction) workshop ideas to Scott Classen and Kevin McCarty, the chairs for this year’s User Meeting.
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Nuclear Sciences Receives Community Outreach Award From Scouts Organization
The Nuclear Science Division hosted its third annual Nuclear Science Day for Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts on March 2, accommodating nearly 200 scouts. To honor the Division’s efforts to spark interest in STEM subjects, the Boy Scouts of America’s Mount Diablo Council recently presented them with a Community Partnership Award. This year’s Nuclear Science Day was a partnership between NSD, the Advanced Light Source, and the Center for Science and Engineering Education.