Dr. Ernest Moniz was sworn in as the nationâ€™s 13th Secretary of Energy by Deputy Energy Secretary Daniel Poneman in a ceremony May 21 for the Departmentâ€™s employees, kicking off a busy first day that includes briefings on energy and national security as well as remarks to the 2013 Energy Efficiency Global Forum. Moniz was confirmed by the full Senate in a vote of 97-0 on May 16.
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Iowa State University senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert announced the appointment of Thomas Lograsso as interim director of the Ames Laboratory. Lograsso will replace Alex King, who is stepping down to the lead the Laboratoryâ€™s Critical Materials Institute, a $120 million DOE Energy Innovation Hub announced in January. Lograsso will assume the directorship as soon as funding for the Critical Materials Institute is received.
Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energyâ€™s Ames Laboratory, Iowa State University, and the University of Crete in Greece have found a new way to switch magnetism that is at least 1000 times faster than currently used in magnetic memory technologies. Magnetic switching is used to encode information in hard drives, magnetic random access memory and other computing devices. The discovery, reported in the April 4 issue of Nature, potentially opens the door to terahertz (1012
Materials scientists at the U.S. Department of Energyâ€™s Ames Laboratory are researching ways to perfect a next generation power cable made of an aluminum and calcium composite. Cables of this composite will be lighter and stronger, and its conductivity at least 10 percent better than existing materials for DC power, a growing segment of global power transmission. Its conductivity is about the same as that of existing conductors for AC power.
Pleasant Valley High School of Bettendorf defeated Dubuque Wahlert High School (Dubuque, IA) 74-44 to capture the 2013 Ames Laboratory/Iowa State University Regional High School Science Bowl on Jan. 26. Pleasant Valley, which lost only one match all day in the morning qualifying round, advances to the Department of Energyâ€™s National Science Bowl, April 25-29 in Washington, D.C.