Research Finds Vitamin D Deficiency Affects Bone Quality
A team of researchers working at the ALS has found that vitamin D deficiency plays a significant role in the bone-aging process, reducing bone quality and increasing fracture susceptibility. Read more…
High-pressure x-ray spectroscopy and diffraction provide new evidence that the solid iron core at the center of the Earth is more malleable than previously thought. This weakness could explain how the crystal structure in the Earth’s core has transformed over geological time scales. Read more…
Thanks to the ingenuity and dedication of ALS engineering and accelerator physics staff, a significant chunk of beamtime for user operations was saved this week after a transformer for a major power supply failed. The effort involved all ALS trades and electronic specialties and the resulting fix required over 400 worker-hours to design, install, and test. As a result, nearly 50 users with scheduled beamtime this week will be able to run their experiments. Read about the innovative solution and the people who contributed to the effort.
We know much about the structures of molecules and solids, yet despite all this knowledge, we still are not able to make the energy storage systems we need, develop efficient artificial photosynthesis, or form desired chemical bonds at will. Solving these and many other problems will involve deploying novel materials that function cooperatively in heterogeneous structures and environments. Research with soft x-ray beams will be an essential ingredient in developing and exploring these materials… Read the full ALS Strategic Plan 2014-18.
Since its inception in 2005, the ALS Postdoctoral Fellowship program has supported young scientists in new and ongoing research projects at the ALS. In many cases, the postdoctoral fellows were also supported by collaborating institutions. A list of postdoc “highlights” introduces the researchers and links to a description of their projects while at the ALS, resulting publications, and their current positions and research activities. Read about the new members on the list, Yi Zhang and Shrawan Mishra.
Beginning this month, ALSNews will feature a short pictorial of interesting events or scientific and/or facility images that we think might interest our readers. Our first pictorial highlights the recent visit of Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California) who toured the ALS on April 13; take a look and let us know what you think!
April was a busy month for visitors that included included Sen. Dianne Feinstein (see above), Congresswoman Jackie Speier, managers from BASF, future scientists from UC Berkeley Physics, staff from Hydro Québec and the Canadian Consulate, and more; see Visitors for photos and more information
Speakers and topics TBA. The event will be moderated by Roger Falcone; light refreshments will be provided. For more information, contact Elizabeth Moxon
User Satisfaction Surveys
Just a reminder! I would like to encourage everyone to fill out their User Satisfaction Survey (end-of-run report). At the last UEC meeting in February, UEC members decided that they will review these reports with ALS management to see what they can learn about users’ experiences and needs.
For the user runs from March 19 to April 13, 2014, the beam reliability [(time scheduled – time lost)/time scheduled)] was 97.3%. For this period, the mean time between failures (MTBF) was 31.0 hours, and the mean time to recovery (MTTR) was 50 minutes. There were no significant interruptions.
More detailed information on reliability is available on the ALS reliability bulletin board, which is located in the hallway between the ALS and the control room in Building 80. Questions about beam reliability should be directed to Dave Richardson (DBRichardson@lbl.gov, x4376).