Today at Berkeley Lab

ALS Hosts Lab-Wide Halloween Costume Party on Oct. 31

The event, “Nightmare on Cyclotron Road,” takes place at noon on the Advanced Light Source patio and includes a costume contest ($5 entry fee). Cash prizes will be awarded for scariest/best costume. Contact Giselle Jiles to enter the contest. Bring treats to share. Go here to download a poster.

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Charles Fadley Receives David A. Shirley Award

Fadley has received the award for outstanding scientific achievement at the Advanced Light Source (ALS). The award was presented by the ALS Users Executive Committee in recognition of significant contributions to a better understanding of surfaces and interfaces through the development of novel x-ray photoemission spectroscopy techniques.

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Study Sheds New Light on Why Batteries Go Bad

A comprehensive look at how tiny particles in a lithium ion battery electrode behave shows that rapid-charging the battery and using it to do high-power, rapidly draining work may not be as damaging as researchers had thought – and that the benefits of slow draining and charging may have been overestimated. More>

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Space Dust Analysis Could Provide Clues to Solar System Origins

New studies of space dust captured by NASA’s Stardust Interstellar Dust Collector have shown that interstellar particles may be much more complex in structure and composition than previously thought. ­The tiny particles could give scientists chemical clues about the origins of our solar system. More>

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Stimulating Insulin Production in the Fight Against Type-II Diabetes

Adult-onset diabetes affects hundreds of millions of people worldwide. New treatments have centered on targeting the human receptor protein GPR40 to enhance sugar-dependent insulin secretion. Recently, Takeda researchers published their drug’s mechanism of action using protein structures solved at the ALS’s Berkeley Center for Structural Biology. More>

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ALS User Develops Drug to Help Save Lives of Ebola Victims

With the Ebola virus outbreak worsening and the news of two Americans recovering thanks to a cutting-edge drug treatment, structural biologist Erica Ollmann Saphire (front) has been thrust into the news. She says the attention helps shed light on the importance of public funding for basic research. More>

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Preschooler Science Enthusiast Piques Minds and Wins Hearts

His father wrote Lab protocol officer Nicole Pagano to see if his son, who loves chemistry and has memorized the periodic table, could get a tour. She arranged for him to visit the Advanced Light Source along with its Director Roger Falcone (left), the Building 50 historical exhibit with Deputy Director Horst Simon, and the Molecular Foundry. More>

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Validating Computer-Designed Proteins for Vaccines

Computationally designed proteins that accurately mimic key viral structures can help produce better vaccines. The resulting protein structures, validated at the Advanced Light Source, encourage the further development of this strategy for a variety of vaccine targets, including HIV and influenza. More>

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Register Now for the 2014 ALS User Meeting

Highlights of the Oct. 6-8 meeting include plenary sessions on the facility’s scientific and technical achievements, a historical overview, and a look a future prospects. Featured speakers include user Erica Saphire, discussing how she has used the ALS for her Ebola research. The event also includes a vendor fair. More>

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Advanced Light Source Sets Microscopy Record

Researchers at the ALS used “soft” X-rays to image structures only five nanometers in size. This resolution is the highest ever achieved with X-ray microscopy and may have ushered in a new era for nanoscale imaging. More>

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