Argonne National Laboratory

Press Releases

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Argonne scientists and collaborators used the Gammasphere, this powerful gamma ray spectrometer, to help create the right conditions to cause and spot a long-theorized effect called nuclear excitation by electron capture. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Captured electrons excite nuclei to higher energy states

For the first time, scientists demonstrated a long-theorized nuclear effect called nuclear excitation by electron capture. This advance tests theoretical models that describe how nuclear and atomic realms interact and may also provide new insights into how star elements are created.

February 9, 2018
A research team led by Argonne’s Giulia Galli has gleaned new insights about the structure of salt water by simulating the liquid at the molecular level with the Mira supercomputer, housed at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility. (Image courtesy of Giulia Galli and Alex Gaiduk/Institute for Molecular Engineering.)
Study of salts in water causing stir

A pair of Argonne scientists uncover fresh insights about the structure of saltwater.

February 1, 2018
Argonne researchers and their collaborators sought to understand what happens when an electron is injected into water. They found that the electron binds with the water; however, its binding energy is much smaller than previously thought. (Image courtesy of Peter Allen/Institute for Molecular Engineering.)
Electrons in the water

Scientists have been able to experimentally measure the electron affinity of water, determining what happens to an electron when it is injected into water. The result has importance for photochemical cells and may force scientists to a reexamine certain theories about electronic binding energy.

January 19, 2018
In a newly discovered twist, Argonne scientists and collaborators found that palladium nanoparticles can repair atomic dislocations in their crystal structure. This self-healing behavior could be worth exploring in other materials. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
On the rebound

New research from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory and Stanford University has found that palladium nanoparticles can repair atomic dislocations in their crystal structure, potentially leading to other advances in material science.

January 19, 2018
A comparison of the theoretical calculations (top row) and inelastic neutron scattering data from ARCS at the Spallation Neutron Source (bottom row) shows the excellent agreement between the two. The three figures represent different slices through the four-dimensional scattering volumes produced by the electronic excitations. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Breaking bad metals with neutrons

By combining the latest developments in neutron scattering and theory, researchers are close to predicting phenomena like superconductivity and magnetism in strongly correlated electron systems. It is likely that the next advances in superconductivity and magnetism will come from such systems, but they might also be used in completely new ways such as quantum computing.

January 11, 2018
Argonne scientists Khalil Amine and David Streets have been named to the Web of Science’s Highly Cited List of 2017. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Two Argonne scientists recognized for a decade of breakthroughs

Two scientists with the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have been named to the Web of Science’s Highly Cited List of 2017, ranking in the top 1 percent of their peers by citations and subject area. Materials Scientist Khalil Amine and Energy and Environmental Policy Scientist David Streets say they are thrilled to see their work — and the laboratory — recognized in such a way.

January 10, 2018
Argonne researchers have gotten a better look at how the molecular structures of organic solar cells form, which provides new insights that can improve their efficiency. (Image courtesy of Shutterstock / Dave Weaver.)
Going organic

Using Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source, researchers analyzed how organic solar cells’ crystal structures develop as they are produced under different conditions. With the APS, researchers learned how certain additives affect the microstructures obtained, providing new insights that can improve the cells’ efficiency.

January 9, 2018
Argonne scientists and their collaborators have used a new and counterintuitive approach to balance three important factors — activity, stability and conductivity — in a new catalyst designed for splitting water. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
A catalytic balancing act

Scientists have recently used a new and counterintuitive approach to create a better catalyst that supports one of the reactions involved in splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen. By first creating an alloy of two of the densest naturally occurring elements and then removing one, the scientists reshaped the remaining material’s structure so that it better balanced three important factors: activity, stability and conductivity.

December 21, 2017
A research team that included Argonne chemist Stephen Klippenstein examined the production of hydroxyl radicals, which help break down air pollutants, in a new light. (Credit: Shutterstock / chuyuss)
Clearing the air

A greater understanding of the dynamics of chemical reactions is leading to better models of atmospheric chemistry. Through this work, scientists are gaining insight into a key chemical able to break down some major air pollutants.

December 13, 2017
By heating the anode material to a much lower temperature (less than 260°C), scientists could remove the water near the surface, but retain the water in the bulk of the material, which enhanced its characteristics. Credit: <em>Nature Communications</em> and study authors. Licensed <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode"><em>here</em></a>. Image was resized.
The wet road to fast and stable batteries

An international team of scientists —– including several researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory — – has discovered an anode battery material with superfast charging and stable operation over many thousands of cycles.

December 12, 2017