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Sandia Labs News Releases

Category Archives: Energy / Environment / Water

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Cracking the code to soot formation

LIVERMORE, Calif. — The longstanding mystery of soot formation, which combustion scientists have been trying to explain for decades, appears to be finally solved, thanks to research led by Sandia National Laboratories. Soot is ubiquitous and has large detrimental effects on human health, agriculture, energy-consumption efficiency, climate and air quality. Responsible for significantly increased rates […]

Researchers discover new source of formic acid over Pacific, Indian oceans

LIVERMORE, Calif. — Insights from experiments at Sandia National Laboratories designed to push chemical systems far from equilibrium allowed an international group of researchers to discover a new major source of formic acid over the Pacific and Indian oceans. The discovery was published in the July 3 issue of Nature Communications and featured on the […]

From concept to commercialization: 40 years of concentrating solar power research

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — From testing space shuttle tiles to making electricity from sunlight, the world’s first multimegawatt solar tower has contributed to energy research, space exploration, defense testing and solar energy commercialization since it was commissioned at Sandia National Laboratories in July 1978. The solar tower is a key component of a specific type of […]

Dry casks take the heat

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories researchers have built a scaled test assembly that mimics a dry cask storage container for spent nuclear fuel to study how fuel temperatures change during storage and how the fuel’s peak temperatures affect the integrity of the metal cladding surrounding the spent fuel. Regulators could use the data to […]

Sandia researchers named fellows of The Combustion Institute

LIVERMORE, Calif. — Sandia National Laboratories researchers Robert Barlow and Jacqueline Chen are among 125 members who have been named inaugural fellows of The Combustion Institute. As dedicated members of the international combustion community, fellows are recognized by their peers as distinguished for outstanding contributions to combustion research, whether in combustion fundamentals or in applications. […]

Diesel doesn’t float this boat

LIVERMORE, Calif. — Marine research could soon be possible without the risk of polluting either the air or the ocean. It’s thanks to a new ship design and feasibility study led by Sandia National Laboratories. Hydrogen fuel cells have existed for decades, and there are multiple advantages to using them instead of diesel engines to […]

How microgrids could boost resilience in New Orleans

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — During Hurricane Katrina and other severe storms that have hit New Orleans, power outages, flooding and wind damage combined to cut off people from clean drinking water, food, medical care, shelter, prescriptions and other vital services. In a year-long project, researchers at Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories teamed up with the […]

Raising the heat to lower the cost of solar energy

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories will receive $10.5 million from the Department of Energy to research and design a cheaper and more efficient solar energy system. The work focuses on refining a specific type of utility-scale solar energy technology that uses mirrors to reflect and concentrate sunlight onto a receiver on a tower. The […]

Riding bacterium to the bank

LIVERMORE, Calif. — What does jet fuel have in common with pantyhose and plastic soda bottles? They’re all products currently derived from petroleum. Sandia National Laboratories scientists have demonstrated a new technology based on bioengineered bacteria that could make it economically feasible to produce all three from renewable plant sources. Economically and efficiently converting tough […]

Exascale Earth-modeling system is ready to make high-fidelity predictions for energy

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — An Earth modeling system developed over the last four years and unveiled Monday is expected to have one of the finest resolutions ever achieved by supercomputers simulating aspects of the planet’s climate, said Sandia National Laboratories researcher Mark Taylor, the project’s chief computational scientist. The Energy Exascale Earth System Model, E3SM, is […]

First 3-D printed wind-blade mold, energy-saving nanoparticles earn Sandia national awards

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories has won the Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer’s national 2018 Technology Focus Award for designing the first wind turbine blades fabricated from a 3-D printed mold, which could dramatically shorten the time and expense of developing new wind energy technology. The labs also won FLC’s Excellence in Technology […]

Exploring Arctic clues to secure future with new Sandia, university partnership

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The Arctic is undergoing rapid change, with sea ice melting and temperatures rising at a faster pace than anywhere else in the world. Its changing environment affects global security, politics, the economy and the climate. Understanding these changes is crucial for shaping and safeguarding U.S. security in the future, Sandia scientists say. […]

Effects of climate change on communally managed water systems softened by shared effort

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Shared fates and experiences in a community can help it withstand changes to water availability due to climate change, a recent study by Sandia National Laboratories researchers found. “During our research, a community’s ability to withstand natural and social pressures was routinely pinpointed to the fact that the people who live there […]

Biologically inspired membrane purges coal-fired smoke of greenhouse gases

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A biologically inspired membrane intended to cleanse carbon dioxide almost completely from the smoke of coal-fired power plants has been developed by scientists at Sandia National Laboratories and the University of New Mexico. The patented work, reported recently in Nature Communications, has interested power and energy companies that would like to significantly […]

Road, rail, boat: Sandia transport triathlon puts spent nuclear fuel to the test

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Spent nuclear fuel needs to be safely transported from the power plants where it is generated to interim storage locations and eventually to a permanent geologic disposal site. Late last year, Sandia National Laboratories researchers completed an eight-month, 14,500-mile triathlon-like test to gather data on the bumps and jolts spent nuclear fuel […]

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