In his day job as Director for Imaging and Manipulation of Nanostructures at the Molecular Foundry, Lab physicist Jim Schuck uses pulses of light and electric charges to probe the surfaces of unimaginably tiny structures. When time permits during the summer months, and particularly in October, his calculations may drift from the nanoscale to the truly awesome: exploring the drag coefficient of a 95 mph fastball, spinning off the fingertips of a major league pitcher at 1,800 rpm. While it is not at all clear that physicists can play baseball better than most other people, the game has a particular draw for those inclined to see the universe as the interplay of fundamental forces. More>
Posts Tagged ‘Molecular Foundry’
Forbes Magazine recently conducted a Q&A with Delia Milliron of the Molecular Foundry, asking about her research in developing smart windows, commercialization of this technology, how the Foundry works, and building relationships with local start-ups. More>
As part of the Molecular Foundry’s Annual Users’ Meeting Nov. 4-5, the Foundry hosts a nanoscience film festival called NanoFest. This year NanoFest introduces a new category called “Science Shorts.” This is a great chance for researchers to distill their scientific narrative to two minutes or less – a useful skill to have at any stage of a scientist’s career. Submissions are due at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 10. Send to Alice Muller-Egan.
Rich Saykally of the Chemical Sciences Division and David Pendergrast of the Molecular Foundry, working at the Advanced Light Source, have shown that in water as in love, likes can attract. Using a combination of X-ray spectroscopy, liquid microjets and first principles’ theory, and backed by the computational resources of NERSC, Saykally and Pendergrast demonstrated that, when hydrated in water, positively charged ions can actually pair up with one another. These results, obtained at ALS Beamline 8.0.1, may represent a new paradigm for aqueous solutions in which like charges attract. Also working on this study were Orion Shih, Alice England, Gregory Dallinger, Jacob Smith, Kaitlin Duffey and Ronald Cohen. More>
Materials scientist Jeff Neaton has been appointed as the new director of the Molecular Foundry, effective immediately. He has served as acting director since June of this year. Previously he served as acting director of the Materials Sciences Division. His research centers on computational nanoscience, in particular the development and application of methods for calculating the structural, spectroscopic, and transport properties of inorganic and molecular nanostructures. The announcement was made yesterday (Sept. 12) by Associate Lab Director for Energy and Environmental Sciences Don DePaolo.
Molecular Foundry scientist Jim Schuck and neuroscientist Adam Bristol will give a talk on “A Baseball Cocktail: One Part Physics and One Part Physiology” at the Actual Café in Oakland on Thursday, Sept. 26, at 6:30 p.m. Shuck is the director of the Foundry’s Imaging and Manipulation of Nanostructures facility. As a child he wanted to be a pro baseball player, but today applies his physics insight to the game. Bristol, now a biotech hedge fund, played catcher in high school and college. The event is part of the Foundry’s Actual Science lecture series.
The Bay Bridge bicycle-pedestrian path opened Tuesday, and one of the first riders was Berkeley Lab scientist Ron Zuckermann of the Molecular Foundry. The bike lane is named after Zuckermann’s father, a tireless advocate for bicycle access on BART and Bay Area bridges, and founder of the East Bay Bicycle Coalition. On Tuesday morning, Zuckermann joined his brother, Dave Zuckermann, and Oakland Mayor Jean Quan in an inaugural ride on the bike lane their father fought for well into his eighties. More>
Computer simulations conducted at Berkeley Lab could help scientists make sense of a recently observed and puzzling wrinkle in one of nature’s most important chemical processes. It turns out that calcium carbonate—the ubiquitous compound that is a major component of seashells, limestone, concrete, antacids and myriad other naturally and industrially produced substances—may momentarily exist in liquid form as it crystallizes from solution. The research was published in the August 23 issue of Science. It was performed in support of the Lab’s Center for Nanoscale Control of Geologic CO2, an Energy Frontier Research Center. More >
Researchers at Berkeley Lab have designed a new material to make smart windows even smarter. The material is a thin coating of nanocrystals embedded in glass that can dynamically modify sunlight as it passes through a window. Unlike existing technologies, the coating provides selective control over visible light and heat-producing near-infrared (NIR) light, so windows can maximize both energy savings and occupant comfort in a wide range of climates. The work is featured on the cover of the latest issue of the journal Nature. More>
The 2013 Joint NCEM-Molecular Foundry Annual Users Meeting is planned for Nov. 4-5, at the Berkeley Hilton Doubletree Marina. Eight exciting technical workshops presenting the latest advances in the nanosciences will take place with invited speakers from throughout the world. Go here for more details and registration information.