Feature Stories

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Science Behind the Fiction: Contagion [2011]

Science Behind the Fiction critiques the science portrayed in popular films and literature. Argonne emergency planning experts review “Contagion”, the hit 2011 movie directed by Steven Soderbergh, which follows the spread of a killer virus in modern-day society.

July 1, 2012
Dan Abraham, Argonne materials scientist
Ask a scientist: Battery life and care

Argonne battery scientists answer the question, "Can I make my battery last longer by letting it run all the way out before recharging?"

July 1, 2012
This is an image of a G-protein-coupled receptor signaling complex whose structure was identified in 2011. The receptor is in magenta while the different G protein subunits are colored green, red and blue. Stanford biochemist Brian Kobilka shared the 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work in determining the structure of this activated GPCR using X-rays provided by Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source.
Inside the Advanced Photon Source

Three projects and an upgrade at Argonne’s giant synchrotron.

July 1, 2012
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Science History - 2012

Milestones in science 100, 50, and 20 years ago.

July 1, 2012
Argonne's new supercomputer, a Blue Gene/Q called Mira, has been ranked the fourth fastest supercomputer in the world as of October 2012.
Introducing Mira

Argonne’s new supercomputer won’t be in full production until 2013, but it represents such a leap forward that just the first two prototype racks already rank among the top 100 fastest computers in the world.

July 1, 2012
2012 science haiku winners

Haiku winners from the 2012 issue of Argonne Now.

July 1, 2012
Panagiotis Prezas examines a battery cell in Argonne's Electrochemical Analysis and Diagnostics Lab, where scientists test batteries' life cycles and calendar lives.
The search for a superbattery

Imagine if you only had to plug in your phone once a week. Or your laptop lasted days between charges. Or an affordable electric car that ran for more than 200 miles on a single battery charge.

July 1, 2012
When coated with ultrananocrystalline diamond, these pump seals use less energy during pumping.
Argonne in the marketplace: Ultrananocrystalline diamond

Even as royalty set diamonds into crowns and rings, engineers lusted after the gems for different reasons: diamonds are stronger than any other natural material and are excellent electrical insulators and heat conductors. A technique invented at Argonne National Laboratory creates thin films of diamond with grains so small they're called ultrananocrystalline diamond films

July 1, 2012
Bhoopesh Mishra works on the MRCAT/EnviroCAT X-ray beam line at the Advanced Photon Source.
X-ray technology spotlights new way to contain mercury contamination, protect fish

Mercury contamination is a global problem, and when it finds its way into the water, it very, very rapidly makes its way up the food chain from small fish to large fish to our dinner tables. To cut back on this contamination, Bhoopesh Mishra and fellow scientists from Argonne’s Biosciences Division identified the previously unknown process by which bacterium immobilizes toxic mercury in soil.

June 27, 2012
Frances Dozier conducts research on recycling used nuclear fuel in a glovebox at Argonne National Laboratory.
Nuclear fuel recycling could offer plentiful energy

Currently, only about five percent of the uranium in a fuel rod gets fissioned for energy; after that, the rods are taken out of the reactor and put into permanent storage. Recycling used nuclear fuel could produce hundreds of years of energy from just the uranium we’ve already mined, all of it carbon-free, and new techniques developed by scientists at Argonne address many of those issues.

June 22, 2012