Argonne National Laboratory

Feature Stories

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Water under extreme pressure and temperatures displays odd properties, which were modeled by Argonne and University of Chicago scientists. (Image by University of Chicago / Peter Allen.)
Better model of water under extreme conditions could aid understanding of Earth's mantle

When exposed to unimaginably high temperatures and pressures, water exhibits all sorts of weird phases and properties. Researchers from Argonne and the University of Chicago have developed simulations to predict water’s properties in these harsh conditions.

June 21, 2018
Here are pickled electrolyte molecules (PF<sub>2</sub>OSiMe<sub>3</sub>) binding to reaction centers on the cathode surface. For the ball-and-stick molecules attached to cathode surface, olive green indicates phosphorus (P); purple, fluorine (F); red, oxygen (O); and structure above oxygen, SiMe<sub>3</sub>. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory / Juan C. Garcia.)
The science behind pickled battery electrolytes

Argonne material scientists have discovered a reaction that helps explain the behavior of a key electrolyte additive used to boost battery performance.

June 15, 2018
In late May, the Chicago chapter of the Association for Women in Science met at Argonne to celebrate the group’s 40th anniversary. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Celebrating 40 years of empowerment in science

Four decades ago, an ambitious group of women scientists at Argonne banded together to help form a group that would empower generations of women to come. In late May, they celebrated the 40th anniversary of that group, the Chicago Area Chapter of the Association for Women in Science (AWIS).

June 7, 2018
Argonne chemists Ted Krause and Max Delferro (pictured) focus much of their work on single-site catalysts because of the promise they show for both high activity and product selectivity. Their work has led to several U.S. patent applications. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Cracking the catalytic code

In a variety of research programs, Argonne experts are finding ways to make cheaper and more efficient the manufacture of products derived from shale gas deposits and identifying new routes to higher-performance.

April 24, 2018
Scientists from Argonne National Laboratory and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, along with collaborators from over 25 other institutions, are recreating a previous experiment with much higher precision. The original experiment measured the spin precession of the muon — i.e., the speed at which its spin changes direction — to be different from the theoretical predictions. With this one, scientists plan to confirm or disprove the earlier results. (Image by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory / Reidar Hahn.)
Muons spin tales of undiscovered particles

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) scientists are collaborating to test a magnetic property of the muon. The experiment could point to the existence of physics beyond our current understanding, including undiscovered particles.

April 19, 2018
Argonne nanoscientist Xiao-Min Lin works with the shear cell device that enabled the new discovery in shear-thickening fluids. The polycarbonate cell holds the nanoparticle suspension and the mechanical response of the fluid is measured by the transducer in the rheometer above. The X-ray beam is focused on the sample from the left. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Through thick and thin

Researchers solve a decades-old question: Is particle ordering responsible for the thickening of some industrial products when stirred rapidly? The answer brings us one step closer to solving complex industrial production problems.

April 13, 2018
Summer interns Cayla Hamann (background) and Cheng Chang (foreground) help install a water sensor on the UChicago campus. (Image courtesy of The University of Chicago/ Xufeng Zhang.)
IME scientists dig deep in soil for data to improve agriculture, pollution

Soil is incredibly complex — full of organisms, microbes and chemicals that move and change constantly — and it all feeds into crop health and the Earth’s nutrient cycles in ways that aren’t fully understood. Recent advances in wireless data communications and the growing revolution of portable, cheap sensors have made it possible for scientists, including Profs. Monisha Ghosh and Supratik Guha, to start a pilot program to take real-time soil measurements.

January 12, 2018
Four of the Department of Energy’s ‘Top 40’ research milestones since 1977 involved Argonne scientists. (Image courtesy of Claire Ballweg/Department of Energy and National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center.)
Reaching the Department of Energy’s ‘Top 40’

The U.S. Department of Energy honors Argonne researchers in top 40 research-paper countdown.

January 3, 2018
Oleo Sponge picks up oil during tests at Argonne. (Image by Mark Lopez/Argonne National Laboratory.)
Nine ways Argonne advanced science and technology in 2017

As 2018 approaches, Argonne looks back at nine cool stories that came out of research projects and collaborations at the laboratory.

December 21, 2017
The figure in the foreground shows near-infrared and broadband light pulses (squiggly lines at top) striking a silver nanocube measuring 150 nanometers square. The near-infrared pulse excites electrons in the nanostructure, while the broadband pulse monitors their optical response. An aluminum oxide spacer separates the nanocube from a gold film with a thickness of 50 nanometers. The spacer measures between 1 and 25 nanometers thick. A water molecule, by comparison, is approximately 1.5 nanometers in diameter. (Image courtesy of Matthew Sykes, Argonne National Laboratory, Shutterstock / Triff and Shutterstock / siro46.)
‘Hot’ electrons heat up solar energy research

Argonne research has shown how hybrid nanomaterials may be used to convert light energy more efficiently for applications in photocatalysis, photovoltaics and ultrafast optics.

December 20, 2017