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Sandia Labs News Releases

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2021 News Releases

Prehistoric humans first traversed Australia by ‘superhighways’

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sometime between 50,000 and 70,000 years ago, prehistoric humans took their first steps into Sahul, an ancient landmass made up of modern Australia, New Guinea and Tasmania. But nobody knows which way they went after that. “One of the really big unanswered questions of prehistory is how Australia was populated in the […]

Legendary licenses

Licensing expert Bob Westervelt, who has worked to transfer Sandia National Laboratories technologies in the medical, solar and hydrogen production fields, received the 2021 Outstanding Technology Transfer Professional Award from the Federal Laboratory Consortium. The consortium, a network that honors significant technology transfer accomplishments among more than 300 federal laboratories and research centers, recognized Westervelt […]

Two small balloons against a blue sky to the left of a large tower with a
Here comes the sun: Tethered-balloon tests ensure safety of new solar-power technology

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — What do tiny dust particles, 22-foot-wide red balloons and “concentrated” sunlight have in common? Researchers from Sandia National Laboratories recently used 22-foot-wide tethered balloons to collect samples of airborne dust particles to ensure the safety of an emerging solar-power technology. The study determined that the dust created by the new technology is […]

CRADAs, licenses lead to billions in economic impact since 2000

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Cooperative Research and Development Agreements and patent license agreements between Sandia National Laboratories and outside partners led to billions in economic impact and supported tens of thousands of high-paying jobs every year for the last two decades, according to a recent study on national economic contributions. CRADAs and licenses signed with 223 […]

A song of ice and fiber

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories researchers are beginning to analyze the first seafloor dataset from under Arctic sea ice using a novel method. They were able to capture ice quakes and transportation activities on the North Slope of Alaska while also monitoring for other climate signals and marine life. The team, led by Sandia […]

Tito Bonano stands with Efrain O’Neill inside a huge concrete cylinder with a yellow ladder.
Retaining knowledge of nuclear waste management

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Have you ever started a new job and spent a lot of time figuring out everything from how to get paper for the printer to whether an important customer prefers quick phone calls to emails? Imagine if that important customer was the federal government and the project you were working on was […]

Todd Barrick wearing respirator
Reusable respirator could ease COVID-19 medical mask shortages

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Many medical professionals and other essential, front-line workers have struggled for the past year with persistent shortages of N95 masks. Soon, they might get relief from a Sandia National Laboratories invention — a comfortable, reusable, sterilizable respirator that could ease demand during current or future health crises. Sandia has filed for patent […]

Forbes logo
Forbes magazine again tags Sandia Labs as top large employer

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories again has been recognized by Forbes as one of the 500 Best Large Employers 2021. Sandia also won the distinction in 2017 and again in 2019, shortly after garnering a separate award as one of the magazine’s top workplaces for diversity. Forbes and the market research firm Statista conducted […]

Hot red flame coming out of white ice-like blocks on black background.
Finding fire and ice: Modeling the probability of methane hydrate deposits on the seafloor

RALEIGH, N.C. — Methane hydrate, an ice-like material made of compressed natural gas, burns when lit and can be found in some regions of the seafloor and in Arctic permafrost. Thought to be the world’s largest source of natural gas, methane hydrate is a potential fuel source, and if it “melts” and methane gas is […]

Rare open-access quantum computer now operational

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A new Department of Energy open-access quantum computing testbed is ready for the public. Scientists from Indiana University recently became the first team to begin using Sandia National Laboratories’ Quantum Scientific Computing Open User Testbed, or QSCOUT. Quantum computers are poised to become major technological drivers over the coming decades. But to […]

Hand holding white cube with a play button.
Catching energy-exploration caused earthquakes before they happen

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Geoscientists at Sandia National Laboratories used 3D-printed rocks and an advanced, large-scale computer model of past earthquakes to understand and prevent earthquakes triggered by energy exploration. Injecting water underground after unconventional oil and gas extraction, commonly known as fracking, geothermal energy stimulation and carbon dioxide sequestration all can trigger earthquakes. Of course, […]

Black and white image of an explosive shockwave and a video play button.
Thin explosive films provide snapshot of how detonations start

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Using thin films — no more than a few pieces of notebook paper thick — of a common explosive chemical, researchers from Sandia National Laboratories studied how small-scale explosions start and grow. Sandia is the only lab in the U.S. that can make such detonatable thin films. These experiments advanced fundamental knowledge […]

Black engineer awards expand Sandia Labs spotlight

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Ten Sandia National Laboratories engineers received Black Engineer of the Year Awards, including Most Promising Scientist, Modern Technology Leaders and Science Spectrum Trailblazers. Honorees include Sandia systems, chemical, computer, electrical, petroleum, manufacturing and mechanical engineers who excel in their respective fields, powering innovation while flexing their technological muscles for U.S. national security. […]

Foregrounds: Pine trees and rocks, with three small figures climbing down a cliffside. Background: the lights of Albuquerque at night.
Search and rescue volunteers from Sandia respond to wilderness misadventures

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — By day, Craig Tenney is a chemical engineer at Sandia National Laboratories. But sometimes as he readies for bed, he gets a call and instead finds himself on an icy trail, mere feet from a cliff high above the city in the Sandia Mountains rescuing a couple of hikers who thought they […]

Small IT business wins Sandia’s largest single subcontract

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories awarded an information technology subcontract of potentially up to $700 million over a possible seven years to a New Mexico small business. This is the largest subcontract Sandia has issued to date. “It’s a big deal and a huge win for the small-business community,” said Sandia subcontract manager Ally […]

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