Neutron Science In the News – 2006
Lab scientists, engineers, instrument specialists and others gather moments before the first neutrons were produced Friday, April 29, 2006 at the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source. The facility will allow cutting-edge studies of materials.
Because some media sources archive past articles and require a subscription for access, some of the links below might not be active. If a citation listed here is no longer available, please contact the newspaper or your library directly.
SNS, Center for Nanophase Materials Science receive recognition
Oak Ridger, 12/27
Two Oak Ridge multi-million dollar science projects were recognized by the Department of Energy in Washington for being completed on schedule and within cost at a recent project management awards ceremony. Receiving the 2006 “Secretary's Excellence in Project Management” Award was the Department of Energy's Spallation Neutron Source project. This Award was presented by Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman to Oak Ridge officials for demonstrating exceptional results in completing a project within cost and schedule. SNS federal project director Les Price of the Oak Ridge Office, along with Headquarters Office of Science officials, accepted the award from Bodman on behalf of the entire SNS project team. The Center for Nanophase Materials Science project received the “Secretary's Project Management Award of Achievement,” which was presented by Deputy Secretary Clay Sell. This award recognized the project team for their work in demonstrating significant results in completing this project within cost and schedule.
East Tennessee Medical News, 12/6
For Oak Ridge National Laboratories, 2006 has been a busy one, as new buildings have been completed that enhance cutting-edge research. New fronts in research likely leading to medical and biotechnology applications are expected to arise from within the walls of new ORNL facilities. The new developments at ORNL include the Multiprogram Research Facility (MRF), the new nanoscience center, new technology park, and new Spallation Neutron Source (SNS). UT-Battelle manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory for the Department of Energy...This $1.6 billion SNS facility is the culmination of a cooperative effort between six Department of Energy laboratories across the United States, including Los Alamos National Laboratory, Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, Brookhaven National Laboratory and Argonne National Laboratory. The building of SNS puts the ORNL center on the map as one of the top neutron research facilities in the world.
ORNL plays key part in fusion deal
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 11/22
Scientists at the Princeton University Plasma Physics Lab and Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee will be providing key components and technical expertise for an international research project that could change the world's energy supply, U.S. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said Tuesday.The United States and other nations representing half the planet's population signed an agreement earlier Tuesday to build an experimental fusion energy reactor in France. That could be the last step before building a demonstration power plant and then commercial fusion plants that could produce clean, plentiful energy...The U.S. effort will be overseen by Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where some 70 scientists will be based. Oak Ridge was chosen in part because of its collaborative fusion research with Princeton and in part because of its management expertise in building the massive $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source materials research facility in Oak Ridge.
The Daily Beacon, 11/7
It is 10:30 in the morning, typical time for a coffee break. But "getting neutrons" is not your typical coffee-break chatter--unless you are a scientist, like Ken Herwig. Herwig, who works at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, employs neutrons every day; the subatomic particles are his "detectives" into an unseen world...Herwig's latest success has been designing such an instrument as part of the Spallation Neutron Source, a new facility at ORNL, which the Department of Energy began building seven years ago.
Laboratory Talk, 11/7
Instruments being built at the SNS include neutron spectrometers and diffractometers, used to determine the positions, or arrangements, of atoms in crystals, ceramics, superconductors and proteins. Novel neutron diffractometers and detectors at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory will be using neutron scintillators, developed in conjunction with Applied Scintillation Technologies (AST).
Scientifically Super Sites
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 11/6
Doug Scalapino, a theoretical physicist at the University of California at Santa Barbara, allots about four weeks each year to visit other facilities to advance his scientific studies. He's trying to explain aspects of high-temperature superconductivity, such as an interaction that causes electrons in certain materials to glue together instead of repelling each other...He and his research teammates are using ORNL's Jaguar, a Cray supercomputer that can perform trillions of calculations per second, to explore their theories of how things work. He's also anxious to have scientists test some of the theories with experiments at the newly constructed. He's also anxious to have scientists test some of the theories with experiments at the newly constructed Spallation Neutron Source, a $1.4 billion complex that's just gearing up for action.
Spallation Neutron Source Head to Speak at Luncheon
Oak Ridger, 10/27
Thomas E. Mason, the associate laboratory director in charge of the recently opened Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, will speak at a Nov. 1 luncheon sponsored by the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy. The luncheon begins at 11:30 a.m. at the University Club on Neyland Drive. The Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) - which allows scientists to study materials at the atomic level - represents a pinnacle in more than 60 years of collaboration between the University of Tennessee and ORNL, according to a UT news release. The relationship between the two institutions was greatly enhanced in 2000 when UT, in partnership with Battelle, took over management of the lab for the U.S. Department of Energy. Mason also serves as vice president of UT-Battelle.
Science, October 2006
Several European governments are lining up behind construction of a high-powered neutron source that would allow the region to keep pace with new facilities in the United States and Japan. The design team for the €1.2 billion ($1.5 billion) European Spallation Source (ESS) was dissolved in 2002 due to lack of interest from potential funders, but supporters point to several recent studies backing the concept for the renewed interest. "There is now a total consensus that the ESS is necessary," says Peter Tindemans, chair of the ESS Initiative, a lobbying group that has been keeping the ESS flame alive...Earlier this year, the Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee produced its first neutrons and is now working up to its full beam power of 1 megawatt.
Neutrons for Mona Lisa: Louvre researcher speaks at ORNL
Oak Ridger, 10/17
A researcher from one of the world's most famous museums will speak at Oak Ridge National Laboratory on how the latest advances in science are telling us more about masterpiece works of art. Philippe Walter will discuss his work at the Ion Beam Analysis facility of Le Louvre in Paris, including scientific imaging and analysis of Leonardo Da Vinci's “Mona Lisa” and other works of art and artifacts. The lecture is at 7:30 p.m. Monday in the new Iran L. Thomas Auditorium at Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Spallation Neutron Source. The event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited and advance registration is required for access to ORNL.
Nano Nexus 2007, a nanotechnology-oriented forum bringing together academia, industry and budding entrepreneurs will be held April 2-4, 2007, at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). It is the first time this type of event has been hosted by a national laboratory...ORNL officials said Nano Nexus will also allow researchers and industry representatives to learn more about its capabilities. The lab recently completed construction of the Spallation Neutron Source, a $1.4 billion facility that allows scientists to examine the structure and properties of materials at a molecular level using powerful beams of neutrons. Next door, the recently finished $65 million Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences provides instrumentation, fabrication, synthesis, characterization and modeling capabilities for nanoscale materials and has already hosted nearly 100 outside users from research institutions around the world and industry.
The Daily Beacon, 10/10
The Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Center for Nanophase Materials Science is a one-stop-shop for nanoresearch, where scientists investigate the composition of materials that are 100,000 times smaller than a human hair. During its inaugural users meeting June 14-16, 2006, the center's scientific director Doug Lowndes welcomed more than 300 delegates representing universities and laboratories from around the globe to hear about the future of the Center and the research it will address over the next two years starting in late October or early November...The first grand challenge that the nanoscience center hopes to overcome is “designing and controlling the nanoscale organization of macromolecular materials,” said Phil Britt, a National Laboratory scientist, about Macromolecular Complex Systems at a nano-conference in June. Focusing mainly on polymers, the group's co-leader suggested that the new laboratory was a “one-stop-shop” for users' polymer needs, including design, synthesis and characterization. Britt, alongside National Laboratory and UT-National Laboratory Distinguished Scientist Jimmy Mays, will lead the macromolecular systems group as they prepare to use the latest equipment and resources, such as the Spallation Neutron Source, to uncover the fundamental properties of polymers and the control scientists may have over their synthesis.
'Cold source' testing at ORNL successful
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 10/10
Tests of a new "cold source" at the government's High Flux Isotope Reactor were successful last week, paving the way for restart of the research reactor by year's end, officials said...The High Flux Isotope Reactor is a complement to the newly constructed Spallation Neutron Source, a $1.4 billion research center a couple of miles away on Chestnut Ridge.Together, the research facilities are expected to make Oak Ridge the "neutron capital of the world" and attract scientists from around the globe to do neutron-scattering experiments that explore the basic structure and properties of materials.
Tennessee Alumnus, Fall, 2006
The UT Oak Ridge partnership, like a rocket leaving the launch pad, is gathering momentum that will propel it to new heights. The partnership's financial impact might be similar to the value of a rocket too: $3 billions worth of research facilities, equipment, and expertise. Look at the partnership today and you see huge economic potential buttressed by a scientific research infrastructure like none other. Nanotechnology and high-speed supercomputing are two of the partnership's premier strengths and are the essence of new-century science.
ORNL nanoscience center officially complete
Oak Ridger, 9/27
Oak Ridge National Laboratory's new centerpiece for nanoscience research, the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, is now complete - on scope, under budget and a month ahead of schedule. "This is a demonstration of teamwork at its best," said Linda Horton, director of the CNMS. "The science staff has worked seamlessly with engineering staff, construction crews, federal regulators and staff at our neighboring facility, the Spallation Neutron Source, to complete this nanoscience center ahead of time and under budget."
Inside Energy, 9/4
The 40-year-old High Flux Isotope Reactor at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is not only getting a new major overhaul that will extend its life, but will allow the research reactor to be used in complement experiments conducted at the lab's new Spallation Neutron Source and could provide support for Global Neutron Energy Partnership-related research.
Munger: $1.4B SNS key to 'economic synergy'
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 8/21
Despina Louca, a physics professor at the University of Virginia, has traveled the world to find the best neutrons for materials research. So has Angus Wilkinson, a chemistry professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Now they've got their sights set on Oak Ridge. After seven years of construction, the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source is ready for business. The first experiments are scheduled for this fall, although it may be two years before the full research capabilities are realized.
SNS, ORHS news
Oak Ridger, 8/18
A Thursday evening dedication of the new Iran L. Thomas Auditorium at the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source facility celebrated the progress being made at both the SNS site and the construction site at Oak Ridge High School.
ITER management team leads ‘the way'
Oak Ridger, 8/18
A team of scientists and engineers has been chosen to manage the United States' role in a multinational project to harness the power of fusion, according to a statement released Thursday...In February, the Department of Energy announced the move from PPPL to ORNL to optimize the roles of the two DOE national labs and allow the project to take better advantage of project management experience gained by ORNL in construction of the SNS.
Completing a process that began October 1, 2005, the 12-member contractor team will manage the U.S. contribution to ITER. ITER is a global initiative to build the world's most advanced magnetic fusion experimental facility, said Ned Sauthoff, head of the U.S. ITER Project Office at Oak Ridge National Laboratory...On February 1, 2006, the DOE announced the move from PPPL to ORNL to optimize the roles of the two DOE national labs and allow the project to take better advantage of project management experience gained by ORNL in construction of the SNS. Officially completed in May, SNS is the world's premier neutron scattering facility and reestablishes U.S. leadership in the next generation of materials research.
SNS director retires after 42 years' service
Oak Ridger, 7/5
Les Price, a project director for the Spallation Neutron Source in Oak Ridge, has retired after 42 years of federal service, a U.S. Department of Energy press release said. Price, who has a bachelor's degree in nuclear engineering, has been SNS federal project director since 1999, the release said.
The National Science Foundation has awarded $11.97 million to the California Institute of Technology for computer software to analyze neutron-scattering experiments. This work could show how to design new materials for a huge variety of applications in transportation, construction, electronics, and space exploration. The five-year Distributed Data Analysis for Neutron Scattering Experiments (DANSE) project is led by Brent Fultz, a professor of materials science and applied physics at Caltech, with coprincipal investigators Michael A. G. Aivazis of the Center for Advanced Computing Research at Caltech, and Ian S. Anderson of the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.
New facilities attract renowned biophysicist
Knoxville (AP), 6/24
Biophysicist Jeremy Smith was courted for months, but the day he agreed to become the first scientist hired under a new recruitment program among the state, the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory was momentous. "By pure coincidence, the very minute I accepted the offer is when this thing started functioning," Smith, 46, told The Associated Press in an interview this week, referring to the lab's $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source complex. "I really can't wait to get into those neutrons, so to speak," said Smith, an Englishman with a top-flight pedigree from Grenoble, France, to Harvard University.
DOE's No. 2 official to visit OR on Friday
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 6/8
Clay Sell, the deputy secretary of energy, will tour the government's Oak Ridge facilities Friday and receive briefings from federal officials here, a spokesman confirmed today...We're honored to have him here for the day," said John Shewairy, DOE's public affairs director in Oak Ridge. Shewairy confirmed Sell's visit but offered few details, other than to say that Sell would visit the Spallation Neutron Source — the $1.4 billion research center that recently produced its first neutrons — and other facilities at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
SNS overseer retires from DOE after 34 years
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 6/8
David Wilfert, one of the federal overseers of the Spallation Neutron Source, has retired from the U.S. Department of Energy after a 34-year career. Wilfert was the deputy federal project director for SNS, a $1.4 billion science research center that recently produced its first neutrons.
The Chattanoogan, 5/17
Congressman Zach Wamp (R-TN) announced today the House Appropriations Committee has approved the Energy and Water bill for Fiscal Year 2007 to fund "critical missions" in Oak Ridge at nearly $3 billion...Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) will be fully funded at $171.4 million and the super computing program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), a national leader in computational sciences, received $83 million for hardware to support the Department of Energy's high-speed computational research.
Nanotechnology initiative gets financial boost
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 5/11
Nearly one year ago, Technology 2020 announced an initiative to nurture nanotechnology business in the region. Now the Oak Ridge-based economic development group is getting some money to go with it...Tech 2020 has also received a $50,000 contract with Oak Ridge National Laboratory for nanotechnology-related work...The local nanotechnology initiative is being driven by the newly completed Spallation Neutron Source, a $1.4 billion federal project coming online at Oak Ridge National Laboratory that promises to draw researchers from around the world for an unprecedented look at the molecular makeup of materials.
ORNL chief: 'Producing science' is on agenda
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 5/10
Oak Ridge National Laboratory is ready to turn construction into production. That's the message from ORNL Director Jeff Wadsworth. For the past several years, the laboratory has undergone a physical transformation, spending hundreds of millions of dollars to refurbish aging facilities and build shiny new ones for research activities...The $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source produced its first neutrons on April 28, signaling the end of a seven-year construction effort to build one of the world's top places to do experiments with materials. Wadsworth said the SNS, combined with the upgrades at the High Flux Isotope Reactor, puts the Oak Ridge site in a unique position.
ORNL director paints 'healthy picture'
Oak Ridger, 5/10
While Oak Ridge National Laboratory has contributed a great deal to the world of science over the past year, including developments in the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source, lab director Jeff Wadsworth reports there are still plenty of challenges ahead...Wadsworth praised SNS program director Thom Mason and his team for successfully firing up the $1.4 billion instrument, which produced a millisecond pulse of neutrons on April 28. When the facility is fully operational, it will produce a pulsing neutron stream 10 times more intense than that of any other research facility in the world. "It really is quite remarkable that they did this - on time, on scope and under cost."
Old reactor gets new lease on life
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 5/8
Oak Ridge National Laboratory's "other" neutron source will return to action this summer. The High Flux Isotope Reactor, a research stalwart since the 1960s, has been shut down since January so workers could install new equipment to expand and improve the reactor's scientific capabilities...The high flux reactor will complement the Spallation Neutron Source, Oak Ridge's $1.4 billion pride and joy. The accelerator-based SNS recently produced its first neutrons, and it's supposed to provide researchers with unprecedented bursts of neutrons for decades to come.
Scientists start monster neutron machine
For the first time Friday, scientists fired up a $1.4 billion research instrument that uses a stream of subatomic particles to analyze metals and other industrial materials. The Spallation Neutron Source facility at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory took seven years to build. It produced a millisecond pulse of neutrons on Friday afternoon.
Oak Ridge site marks emergence of neutron stream
For the first time yesterday, a $1.4 billion research complex fired up a powerful new stream of subatomic particles that promise to help scientists discover new materials, superconductors and therapeutic drugs. The Spallation Neutron Source facility at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory produced its first millisecond pulse of neutrons at 1:04 p.m. CDT, after seven years of construction.
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 4/29
They're finally making neutrons at the nation's premier science research project. A proton pulse hit the target at 2:04 p.m. Friday and released trillions of neutrons at the Spallation Neutron Source facility. “There was a loud cheer, and everyone clapped,” said Thom Mason, project director. “There was a lot of relief and elation. There are a lot of happy people.” Mason described Friday's event as a “key technical milestone for completing the project.” “We're now officially a neutron source,” he said.
Officials to test Neutron Source today
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 4/28
After seven years of construction, the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source - the nation's largest civilian science project - was poised to fire up Friday for the first time. Officials at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory planned to test the Neutron Source, unleashing a pulsing proton beam onto a 20-ton liquid mercury target and "spalling" or releasing trillions of neutrons for scientific inquiry.
When the Intense Pulsed Neutron Source at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory began operations in 1981, few could envision that it would lead to the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source, beginning operations this spring on the grounds of Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.
SNS is refused Y-12 heavy water
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 4/21
The government's stockpile of high-purity heavy water resides at the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant in Oak Ridge, but officials at the nearby Spallation Neutron Source may have to shop outside the country to acquire the 20 tons they need for research operations. The National Nuclear Security Administration rejected the SNS request for heavy water, saying the Y-12 inventory is only for national-security missions.
Anderson to discuss SNS project Tuesday
Oak Ridger, 4/20
...Ian S. Anderson, director of the Experimental Facilities Division for the Spallation Neutron Source, will discuss the SNS, why the facility is being built, and what might be done with the neutrons it produces. The discussion will be held at 2 p.m. April 25 in the Hodges Library Auditorium on the University of Tennessee campus in Knoxville. The event is free and open to the public.
Spallation Neutron Source grand opening date still a guessing game
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 4/19
Although construction of the Spallation Neutron Source is almost a done deal, the grand-opening ceremonies for the $1.4 billion research complex could be months away. Nobody knows when at this point. “My best guess is sometime between Memorial Day and Labor Day,” said Billy Stair, Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s communications chief.
Happy neutron dance
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 4/17
The big science project is zooming toward completion, and the first neutrons likely will be produced during a series of tests next month. The end of seven years of construction is a prelude to research experiments that should advance the knowledge of materials, lead to life-bettering products or maybe someday win a Nobel Prize. Ninety-eight percent of the project's $1.4 billion budget has been spent, but there's enough money left to finish the job – even with $400,000 taken from this year’s construction fund to help pay for the damages caused by Hurricane Katrina.
Next SNS milestone days away
Oak Ridger, 4/17
Spallation Neutron Source associate laboratory director Thom Mason reported late last week that the first beam could possibly be delivered to the SNS’s mercury target within the next two weeks. “It depends on how things go as we switch on the systems” Mason said. “It will certainly happen between now and June.”
UT and Siemens partner on new $4M research facility
Oak Ridger, 3/29
A partnership between the University of Tennessee’s College of Engineering and Siemens Medical Solutions Molecular Imaging will spur new developments in technology while helping to contribute to Knoxville’s growing profile as a hub for innovation...Beyond medical applications, the materials developed at the SMRC will have applications in fields such as homeland security and advanced scientific research like that done at ORNL’s new Spallation Neutron Source.
A “spin liquid” is a very unique, dynamic material in which each spin - the tiny magnetic field carried by an electron - is not frozen into place, producing clearly defined magnetic regions. Instead, the spins are free to change orientation. Because of this, external magnetic fields applied to spin liquids may produce changes that even extreme temperatures and pressures cannot. Jason Gardner, a scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, has been able to freeze a spin liquid by applying a magnetic field...“The neutron spin echo facility at the Center for Neutron Research at NIST is unique in the Americas,” Gardner said. “In collaboration with Georg Ehlers at the Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, we have been doing some great work on the slow dynamics in frustrated magnets.” Gardner and his colleagues hope that their studies will encourage others to use this facility.
The Department of Energy’s Spallation Neutron Source, located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has passed another milestone on the way to completion this year--the commiA “spin liquid” is a very unique, dynamic material in which each spin – the tiny magnetic field carried by an electron – is not frozen into place, producing clearly defined magnetic regions. Instead, the spins are free to change orientation. Because of this, external magnetic fields applied to spin liquids may produce changes that even extreme temperatures and pressures cannot.
Details released Thursday provide a clearer picture of the competitiveness initiative President Bush introduced during his 2006 State of the Union speech on Tuesday...Other programs slated to receive new money include science research on nano-scale materials, or those at the molecular and atomic levels, which would be up $51 million; the hydrogen fuel initiative, up $18 million; the Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, up $100 million; and the National Synchrotron Light Source II, up $45 million.
The U.S. project office for ITER, a major international fusion experiment, is relocating from Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory to Oak Ridge National Laboratory to optimize the roles of the two Department of Energy national laboratories, PPPL and ORNL announced today... The centralized U.S. ITER Project Office, a partnership between PPPL and ORNL since July 2004, is moving to ORNL so that the U.S. ITER program can take better advantage of the project management experience developed by ORNL during the construction there of the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS). The $1.4 billion SNS, a neutron scattering facility that will make the U.S. the leader in the next generation of materials research, is the largest civilian science project in the country and is on schedule and on budget to be completed in June 2006.
Reactor to be down for few months
Knoxville News-Sentinel, 1/21
The High Flux Isotope Reactor, one of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's prized research tools, will be shut down for about five months to allow installation and testing of a cold source and related equipment. Jeff Smith, the lab's deputy director for operations, said Thursday the extended outage was scheduled as part of an overall program to boost the experimental capabilities of the 40-year-old reactor...The upgraded reactor will complement the Spallation Neutron Source, a $1.4 billion research complex nearing completion a couple of miles away. Together, the research facilities are supposed to make Oak Ridge the best place in the world to do neutron experiments.
[Need to scroll] The Department of Energy’s Spallation Neutron Source, located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, is homing in on this year’s completion, with focus being directed to the neutron analysis facility's scientific instruments. The SNS’s instrument team has successfully installed the liquids reflectometer incident arm, goniostat and detector arm in one of its beam lines. A goniostat is a mechanism capable of more than two dozen precision motions, which will be required to position the instrument’s detector arm and sample arm for performing neutron analysis.
SNS set for planned 2006 completion
Oak Ridger, 1/2
The New Year is bringing the science community a grand present: the Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. On schedule for completion in 2006, the Department of Energy’s new science facility will provide researchers with the world’s most powerful and most advanced tool for analyzing a host of materials with neutrons.