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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

In The News

Lightweight Metallic Glass Strong as Steel

[MSNBC] As anyone who lives too close to a baseball field knows, glass can be frustratingly fragile. But a new type of glass, made from opaque titanium and zirconium instead of transparent silicon, is harder, tougher, and weighs less than stainless steel. The California researchers — including Berkeley Lab materials scientists Maximilien Launey and Robert Ritchie — who developed and tested the opaque glass hope it could one day replace steel and aluminum in a wide variety of products, from golf clubs to airplanes. More>

People: EETD’s Mills Talks Climate Change on Discovery Channel Program Tonight

climate changeEvan Mills, a researcher with the Lab’s Environmental Energy Technologies Division, will appear on the Discovery Channel feature, "Global Warming: The New Challenge with Tom Brokaw." The program is set to air tonight at 9 p.m. (check your cable provider for local time and channel). Mills speaks about the implications of climate change on the financial services sector, a topic he and others at the Lab have been working on for over a decade.  The insurance industry has of late begun to embrace climate science and modeling techniques, and to launch a host of green insurance products and services.

In The News: Behold the Appearance of the Invisibility Cloak

invisible cloak[Wall Street Journal] Magicians make things on stage vanish with mirrors and sleight of hand. Physicists are learning to make objects disappear by crafting artificial blind spots from strange new fabrics that deflect revealing electromagnetic waves. Last summer, researchers led by Berkeley Lab materials scientist Xiang Zhang produced an experimental mesh that could reverse the normal direction of visible and near-infrared light. They arranged a million wires, each hundreds of times finer than a human hair, into a tiny mat of metamaterial measuring 20 microns square. More>

DOE Update: Obama Nominates DOE Under Secretary

johnsonPresident Barack Obama has nominated Kristina Johnson, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs of Johns Hopkins University, to be the Under Secretary of Energy. This position oversees the DOE Offices of Fossil Energy, Nuclear Energy, Environment Management, and Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy — the office that provides most of the funding for Berkeley Lab’s Environmental Energy Technologies Division. Johnson is an electrical engineer known for her pioneering work on liquid crystal on silicon. More>

elder careHR Benefits: Elder Care Workshop Among Events Scheduled for April

From the “Active for Life” kickoff to an elder care workshop and a class on eating healthy on a budget, the HR Benefits department hosts a number of events to help staff manage their work and life. To assist staff in tracking upcoming events, the department produces a monthly calendar, and the April edition is now available.

cellsProcurement: eBuy Catalogs Offer Comprehensive Resource for Supplies

Users of Fisher Scientific and other non-eBuy lab supply catalogs should be aware that the eBuy catalogs of Government Scientific Source (GSS) and VWR currently provide a full range of supplies, equipment, and chemicals, with excellent pricing and equal or greater coverage than that provided under existing blanket subcontracts. In addition to the complete catalogs of VWR, Invitrogen, and Sigma Aldrich, GSS offers over 80 manufacturers in its own direct catalog.

IT: Lab Migration to New VPN Server Continues

The Lab’s virtual private network (VPN) service provides unrestricted access to LBLnet, via an encrypted connection, for employees on travel or otherwise working from remote locations. A new VPN server with additional features was recently installed and is publicly accessible. VPN users who continue to use the legacy servers must migrate to this new server before May 14. More>

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