Argonne National Laboratory

Press Releases

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A mechanical stress testing setup with a custom-built compact furnace and cooling system that mimic extreme operating conditions on turbine engines at the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory. Photo credit: DLR. (Click image to enlarge)
Novel capability enables first test of real turbine engine conditions

Manufacturers of turbine engines for airplanes, automobiles and electric generation plants could expedite the development of more durable, energy-efficient turbine blades thanks to a partnership between the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, the German Aerospace Center and the universities of Central Florida and Cleveland State.

September 16, 2014
Argonne's Advanced Photon Source. Click to enlarge.
Mysteries of space dust revealed

The first analysis of space dust collected by a special collector onboard NASA’s Stardust mission and sent back to Earth for study in 2006 suggests the tiny specks open a door to studying the origins of the solar system and possibly the origin of life itself. This is the first time synchrotron light sources have been used to look at microscopic particles caught in the path of a comet.

August 29, 2014
The NMDA receptor is a massive, multi-subunit complex. CSHL researchers found that it looks much like a hot air balloon. The upper, balloon-like portion of the structure is found outside the cell and responds to chemical messengers. Those messengers act like a key to unlock the lower portion of the receptor. This lower portion, corresponding to the basket of the hot air balloon, is embedded in the neuron’s membrane. It creates a narrow channel that allows ions, or electrically charged atoms, to flow into the cell. These many subunit interactions are potential targets for drug discovery. Click to enlarge.
Unprecedented detail of intact neuronal receptor offers blueprint for drug developers

Scientists succeeded in obtaining an unprecedented view of a type of brain-cell receptor that is implicated in a range of neurological illnesses, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, depression, schizophrenia, autism, and ischemic injuries associated with stroke.

July 7, 2014
We live atop the thinnest layer of the Earth: the crust. Below is the mantle (red), outer core (orange), and finally inner core (yellow-white). The lower portion of the mantle is the largest layer – stretching from 400 to 1,800 miles below the surface. Research at Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source recently suggested the makeup of the lower mantle is significantly different from what was previously thought. Image by Johan Swanepoel/Shutterstock. Click to enlarge.
Composition of Earth’s mantle revisited thanks to research at Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source

Research published last week in Science suggested that the makeup of the Earth’s lower mantle, which makes up the largest part of the Earth by volume, is significantly different than previously thought.

June 17, 2014
A metal oxide drop levitated in a flow of gas is heated from above with a laser beam so that researchers can study the behavior of this class of ceramics under high temperatures. Image courtesy of Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Click to enlarge.
Neutrons and X-rays reveal structure of high-temperature liquid metal oxides

By levitating a bead of ceramic oxide, heating it with a 400-watt carbon dioxide laser, then shooting the molten material with X-rays and neutrons, scientists with the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge and Argonne national laboratories have revealed unprecedented detail of the structure of high-temperature liquid oxides.

June 9, 2014
A cancer cell (a), imaged with Argonne's Bionanoprobe, clearly shows researchers exact positions of nanoparticles in three dimensions. Identifying the positions (b) of nanoparticles for iron (red), titanium (green) and phosphorus (blue) helps researchers develop more effective cancer therapies. Click to enlarge.
Nanoscale freezing leads to better imaging

A new Bionanoprobe at the Advanced Photon Source dramatically improves three-dimensional nanoscale image mapping of trace elements within a cell.

February 21, 2014
The external face of the flavivirus NS1 protein (sugars in grey balls) is exposed on infected cell surfaces where it can interact with the immune system. This face is also exposed in secreted NS1 particles present in patient sera. The background image shows artificial membranes coated with the NS1 protein. Image credit: David Akey, Somnath Dutta, University of Michigan. Click to enlrage.
Decoding dengue and West Nile: Researchers take steps toward control of growing public health problems

Utilizing Argonne's Advanced Photon Source, a team of scientists from the University of Michigan and Purdue University has discovered a key aspect both to how Dengue fever and West Nile fever replicate in the cells of their host and how they manipulate the immune system as they spread.

February 6, 2014
Meimei Li’s research focuses on structural materials for nuclear reactors. Click to enlarge.
Nuclear engineer Li wins Presidential Early Career Award

Argonne nuclear engineer Meimei Li has received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for her contributions to the understanding of nuclear reactor materials.

January 15, 2014
Protein crystal samples are placed on a small metal tip so X-rays from the adjacent beam pipe can pass through them and diffract off the atoms inside the crystal. Using computers, scientists interpret the scattered light patterns recorded by detectors to create a picture of how the atoms are located inside the crystal. Click to enlarge.
Lessening X-ray damage is healthy for protein discovery data too

New recommendations for using X-rays promise to speed investigations aimed at understanding the structure and function of biologically important proteins – information critical to the development of new drugs.

December 16, 2013
An illustration of the perovskite crystal fabricated in the experiment. Click to enlarge. Image credit: Felice Macera.
A new material for solar panels could make them cheaper, more efficient

A unique solar panel design made with a new ceramic material points the way to potentially providing sustainable power cheaper, more efficiently, and requiring less manufacturing time. It also reaches a four-decade-old goal of discovering a bulk photovoltaic material that can harness energy from visible and infrared light, not just ultraviolet light.

December 11, 2013