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Recent News from the National Labs

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January 10, 2014
Wind energy is one of the world's fast-growing energy sources -- and many of the regions that could benefit from wind energy happen to be in cold climates.

Since 2005, scientists at GE Global Research have been researching, developing and testing materials in freezing conditions. By developing more efficient materials for wind turbines, researchers can increase turbine efficiency and reduce potential downtime for wind turbines in cold climates.

The teams use Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Titan, the world's most powerful supercomputer, to simulate hundreds of water droplets as they freeze, with each droplet containing one million molecules. By simulating and studying how water freezes on a molecular level, scientists are gaining an understanding of how ice forms, which will help them design better, more efficient materials for these colder climates. Pictured here is an illustration of a single water droplet, filled with molecules freezing in slow motion. <a href="https://www.olcf.ornl.gov/2013/10/25/titan-propels-ge-wind-turbine-research-into-new-territory/" target=_blank">Learn more about their research here</a>. | Photo/visualization courtesy of M. Matheson, Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Photo of the Week: Cold as Ice — Using Titan to Build More Efficient Wind Turbines

Check out our favorite energy-related photos!

January 9, 2014
Photo credit: iStock.
New Steps to Strengthen the Nation’s Energy Infrastructure

Today President Obama formally launched the Quadrennial Energy Review, a path toward more reliable, secure and environmentally sound production, transmission and consumption of energy in the U.S.

January 8, 2014
This 3-D rendering of a lysozyme molecule shows two gadolinium atoms bound to it. Researchers soaked lysozyme crystals in a solution containing the metal gadolinium to help improve imaging quality in an experiment at SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) X-ray laser. The experiment proved that LCLS can resolve the lysozyme structure without using data obtained earlier, and researchers hope to use similar techniques to reconstruct important unsolved proteins. | Photo credit: Max Planck Society.
Protein Puzzles and Scientific Solutions

Learn how researchers at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory solve complicated structures using X-ray savvy and serious computing power.

January 7, 2014
These solar power collection dishes at Sandia National Labs' National Solar Thermal Test Facility are capable of some of the highest solar to electricity conversion. In January 2008, this technology set a new solar-to-grid system conversion efficiency record of 31.25 percent net efficiency rate; the technology is still available to benefit the U.S. by delivering power at all hours of the day by implementing thermal energy storage. CSP with storage provides important benefits to integrate more renewable energy to our electric power supply by mitigating resource variability and satisfying peak demand after sunset.  | Photo courtesy of Sandia National Laboratories.
In-Depth: Cleantech at the National Labs

This month on energy.gov, we'll be featuring clean energy technologies developed at the Energy Department's National Labs.

January 3, 2014
Our Best Energy Videos of 2013

Check out our best videos from 2013 -- from Secretary Moniz's first day on the job, to the rivalry between Edison and Tesla, to a visit to a solar-powered classroom.

December 31, 2013
Take a look back at 2013 with the most popular blog posts on Energy.gov.
The Year on Energy.gov: Our Most Popular Posts of 2013

Solar power, zombie replicants and the Super Bowl all are featured in our top blog posts of 2013.

December 24, 2013
The Energy Department's Los Alamos National Lab is tracking Santa Claus as he circles the globe the night before Christmas.
Tracking Santa With Our Eyes in the Sky

The Energy Department's Los Alamos National Lab is tracking Santa Claus as he circles the globe the night before Christmas.

December 18, 2013
Scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory study the microbial interactions in the plant root systems, the rhizosphere. The rhizosphere represents a critical zone where plant roots, microbes and minerals interface, and where biogeochemical weathering provides nutrients to plants. This research program will broaden our understanding of the biogeochemistry of plant-microbe-soil interactions. Shown are the spores of an opportunistic soil fungus Penicillium sp. that associates with the plant roots, microbial biofilms and soil minerals. | Photo courtesy of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
Photo of the Week: Studying the Rhizosphere

Check out our favorite energy-related photos!

December 16, 2013
Arapaima gigas is an air-breathing fresh water fish in the Amazon Basin that swims with impunity through piranha-infested waters. | Photo courtesy of Jeff Kubina, National Geographic.
Energetic Science and Piranha-Proof Armor

Learn how Berkeley Lab’s Advanced Light Source is revealing the unique structure of incredible, adaptable fish armor.

December 13, 2013
Los Alamos National Laboratory scientist Roger Wiens removes the laser safety plug on the ChemCam Mast Unit, selected for the Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity. Wiens removes the plug (left), while scientist Bruce Barraclough sits at the command console (right). | Photo courtesy of LeRoy Sanchez, Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Los Alamos National Laboratory

From national security science to supercomputing, Los Alamos National Lab is leading the way in protecting the American public, countering global threats and solving emerging energy challenges.