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Feature Stories

  • According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the United States produced 254 million tons of municipal solid waste in 2013. And though 87 million tons of that material from the landfill was diverted through recycling and composting, what if the nation could do better? What if landfills could become local sources of clean energy production? Better yet, what if all waste streams, like those from agricultural, livestock, and food production, could essentially become fuel refineries at a local level?

    A collaboration of National Laboratory researchers wants to create energy conversion technologies designed to mine the carbon out of waste processes that traditionally have been an environmental burden to the planet and a disposal headache for humans. (3/24/16)

  • Two sets of twin sisters have turned their interest in science, including participation on their high school Science Bowl team, into science careers in materials science, NASA, medicine and architecture. (3/18/16)

  • Ames Laboratory physicist Paul Canfield has always been a vocal proponent of his field, condensed matter physics, but he’s about to take it up a notch. In March, Canfield will begin a four-year leadership stint heading up the Condensed Matter Physics Division of the American Physical Society. APS recently announced that Canfield had been elected vice-chair of the CMP division. (02/04/2016)

  • As 2016 ramps up, we’d like to reflect on a few of the science and technology achievements that have resulted from research performed by Ames Laboratory scientists in 2015.  From learning more about how electrons communicate to creating cheaper magnetic materials for cars and wind turbines, Ames Laboratory scientists are helping address the Department of Energy’s most pressing materials challenges. (1/26/16)

  • In just a little over a year of operation, Ames Laboratory’s dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer has successfully characterized materials at the atomic scale level with more speed and precision than ever possible before. Spectra for materials important to catalysis, solar energy, and hydrogen storage have helped scientists better understand how these materials work. (1/21/2016)