Today at Berkeley Lab

DOE Podcast on How the Atomic Age Began

The three-part broadcast — part of the Department of Energy’s “Direct Current” podcast series — looks at what happened in three top-secret town, and how the DOE and National Park Service teamed up to preserve the legacy of this pivotal moment in history. Part one looks at the Manhattan Project. More>

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Mars Research by Pimentel Recognized With National Historic Landmark

The American Chemical Society honored George Pimentel’s development of the Mars Infrared Spectrometer with a plaque in the lobby of UC Berkeley’s Pimentel Hall. The spectrometers were used on the NASA spacecrafts Mariner 6 and 7. In addition to being an associate director at the Lab, Pimentel was a longtime Cal professor, teaching freshman chemistry until just before he died in 1989. More>

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Former Rad Lab Researcher Harold Weaver Dies at Age 99

Weaver, a pioneer of radio astronomy who discovered the first microwave laser, passed away on April 26. A UC Berkeley professor emeritus, Weaver worked on isotope separation at the “Rad Lab,” Berkeley Lab’s predecessor on campus, as part of the Manhattan Project. More>

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In Memoriam: Mendelevium Co-Discoverer Bernard Harvey

Harvey (far right) died on Nov. 29 at age 97. He co-discovered element 101, mendelevium, with Glenn Seaborg in 1955. He wrote the first scientific paper on plutonium chemistry during World War II, which caught the eye of Seaborg. At Seaborg’s urging, Harvey joined the Lab in 1953 and served as director of the 88-inch cyclotron and the Nuclear Science Division before retiring.

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Ed Lofgren, Pioneering ‘Rad Lab’ Physicist, Dies at 102

Lofgren, who died on Sept. 6, played key roles in many projects throughout the Lab’s history. He was a close associate of E.O. Lawrence, and chief physicist for the development, construction, and operation of the Bevatron. He also served as associate laboratory director, and was the first director of the Accelerator Division. He retired in 1979. More>

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In Memoriam: Legendary Lab Physicist Ed Lofgren (1914-2016)

Edward Lofgren (2nd from right), a physicist hired by E.O Lawrence who worked on an early isotope-separating cyclotron, participated in the Manhattan Project, and oversaw the operation of the Bevatron accelerator as its first director when the antiproton was discovered there, died Sept. 5, at the age of 102. A full obit, including memorial service details, will appear in TABL in the coming days.

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How ESnet, the World’s Fastest Science Network, Was Built

This BuzzFeed-inspired listicle looks at how DOE’s ESnet (Energy Sciences Network) was built over 30 years and in 13 steps. ESnet connects more than 40 DOE research sites — including the entire National Lab system, supercomputing facilities and major scientific instruments — as well as hundreds of other science networks around the world and the Internet.

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Darkness Falls on the Dinosaurs

In 1980, Luis Alvarez and colleagues at Berkeley Lab, proposed what has become the preeminent theory of the dinosaurs’ annihilation: an asteroid six miles wide struck Earth at the same geologic instant that the dinosaurs and many other organisms went extinct. Yet among geoscientists, there has been a lingering sense that the story has not been told in full. More>

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Foundry Symposium Highlights 10 Years of Achievement

The event included talks by Foundry Director Jeff Neaton, past and present lab directors, users, and Congressman Mike Honda (pictured). Topics included the use of the facility for research on nanophotonics, nanocrystal probes for biological and medical applications, and the use of computer simulations for materials design. More>

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Message From Director Witherell on Molecular Foundry Anniversary

This week we are celebrating the many scientific breakthroughs made possible by the Molecular Foundry in its ten years of operation. It is a good time for us as a Laboratory to consider why this new scientific user facility developed so quickly into a scientific powerhouse and what that means for us in thinking about future facilities. More>

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