Today at Berkeley Lab

In Memoriam: Biosciences Researcher Jim O’Neil

Jim O’Neil of the Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging Division died on Aug. 7 at the age of 55 from complications related to heart failure. O’Neil was a radiochemist who made many important contributions to the field of nuclear medicine and to the Positron Emission Tomography (PET) imaging program at the Lab. A memorial service will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley on Oct. 20 at 2 p.m. More>

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Biosciences’ Kenneth Downing Passes Away

The Berkeley Lab community mourns the loss of Kenneth H. Downing, who died August 2 at age 72. A senior scientist in the Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging Division, Downing worked at the Lab for more than four decades. He passed away at home, surrounded by his family. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 1, at 11 a.m., at Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church, with a reception to follow. More>

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Former Lab Advisory Board Member, Nobel Laureate Burton Richter Passes Away

Nobel Laureate Burton Richter, whose innovation of the e+e- collider SPEAR at SLAC led to the observation of the charmed quark, passed away on July 18. Richter and Lab physicists George Trilling, Gerson Goldhaber, and Willi Chinowsky led the SLAC-LBL team that in 1974 discovered a narrow resonance due to the bound state of a charmed quark and its antiparticle. Richter served on the Lab’s Advisory Board. More>

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Remembering Berkeley Lab’s First Electrical Engineer: William R. ‘Bill’ Baker

William R. “Bill” Baker (seated), who died May 4 at age 103, was a lifelong engineer with an unrelenting mind and boundless ingenuity. He was the first electrical engineer hired by Ernest Orlando Lawrence and worked on the Lab’s early cyclotrons, the Manhattan Project, and fusion research. More>

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Eugene Haller, Leading Expert in Semiconductor Materials, Dies at 75

Eugene Haller — the founder of the Electronic Materials Program at Berkeley Lab — passed away on June 22 at the age of 75. He was a highly regarded leader in the field of semiconductor materials. Haller’s career spanned more than 30 years, and during that time, he emerged as one of the scientific pioneers redefining the field of materials science and engineering to include semiconductors. More>

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Former Senior Biophysicist John Lyman — Inventor of Lyman Model — Dies at 86

John Tompkins Lyman, a former senior biophysicist at Berkeley Lab who researched the biological effects of ionizing radiation, passed away on May 30 at the age of 86 in Walnut Creek. His widely used analysis and method of optimization for radiation treatment became known as the Lyman Model. There will be a celebration of his life this Saturday, June 23, at 5:30 p.m. at Postino Restaurant in Lafayette. More>

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Tech Institute Gives Posthumous Achievement Award to Former Lab Researcher

As part of its annual alumni awards, the Illinois Institute of Technology posthumously bestowed its lifetime achievement award to Robert Bragg (scroll to seventh entry). . In 1969, Bragg accepted a joint appointment with Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley. At the time, he was one of only six African American faculty members on campus. He passed away last October at the age of 98. More>

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Lab’s Smoot and Bousso Quoted on Death of Stephen Hawking

Lab physicist George Smoot, quoted in the Los Angeles Times, said Hawking’s contributions were original and far-reaching, reframing ideas about the origins of the universe and the nature of time and space. Raphael Bousso, a Lab physicist and former student of Hawking, was quoted in a New York Times obituary on the March 14 passing of the scientist at age 76.

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In Memoriam: Maria Elena Garcia (1937-2018)

Former Lab employee Maria Elena Garcia passed away on March 7; she was 80 years old. She worked in the Director’s Office for 37 years in support of three Lab directors — Andy Sessler, Dave Shirley, and Chuck Shank — until she retired on April 5, 1997. Garcia’s service will take place on Friday, March 16, at 5 p.m., at St. Joseph Cemetery and Funeral Center.

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Biosciences Affiliate Stephen Holbrook Passes Away

Holbrook died August 12 at age 68. Holbrook joined the Lab in 1979 and retired in 2012. He shared an office with his wife Libby, also a Biosciences affiliate. Holbrook researched nucleic acid crystal structures, protein structures, prediction of novel RNA’s, and protein complexes. He received a DOE mentor award in 2004. A memorial service will be held Saturday, Nov. 4. More>

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