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Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2009

In The News

Fine-Tuning Buildings' Energy Systems Urged

[San Francisco Chronicle] What if there were a way to save the nation $30 billion a year in energy costs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 300 million tons a year and create thousands of new jobs - using existing technologies and at a price so cheap that it would pay for itself in the first year? Evan Mills, a researcher at Berkeley Lab, says there already is one: building commissioning, the art and science of maximizing the energy efficiency of commercial buildings. "Roughly 40 percent of all humanity's greenhouse gas emissions from energy come from the building sector," Mills said. "I would rank it one of the very first, if not the first thing to do." More>

Special Event: Interim Director Hosts Town Hall on Sept. 17

alivisatosStaff who would like an update on the Lab’s strategic direction, management, safety efforts, and infrastructure initiatives are invited to attend a noon-time, brown-bag, all-hands meeting with Interim Lab Director Paul Alivisatos. The gathering will be held Thursday, Sept. 17, in the Building 66 Auditorium. For those unable to attend, the meeting will be webcast live, and later archived. Questions can be e-mailed to [email protected] during the broadcast, or sent now.

sheldonResearch: Gold Solution for Enhancing Nanocrystal Electrical Conductance

A team of Berkeley Lab researchers, led by Interim Lab Director Paul Alivisatos and including Matt Sheldon (pictured), were able to enhance the electrical conductivity of semiconductor nanorod crystals by 100,000 times through a technique in which the nanorods were tipped with gold contacts grown in solution. This technique holds much promise for the future of solar cells made from nanocrystals, and the use of solar energy to produce clean and renewable liquid transportation fuels. More>

EH&S: Expiration Dates Change for Radiation Protection Classes

Effective now, the expiration dates and course names of the Radiation Protection Group (RPG) training program at Berkeley Lab will change (including GERT). These changes are in response to the HSS audit earlier this year. In addition, all RPG training courses taken from this date forward will expire two years from the date of completion. Existing expiration dates for courses that are not currently on a two-year cycle (e.g. EHS0432-5 years) will be honored. More>

HR Benefits: No Benefit Changes, Enrollments During Fiscal Close

Due to the payroll fiscal year-end closing, employees will be unable to make any benefit program changes or manual enrollments through the HR Benefits Group from Monday, Sept. 14, through Monday, Oct. 5. Any forms received during this time will be processed after these dates. The "UC At Your Service" online benefit enrollment website will be available during this time. For more information, contact the HR Benefits Group (x6003).

Employee Development: Workshop on Lab's Tuition Reimbursement

The Berkeley Lab Learning Institute will offer a workshop on the Lab's Tuition Reimbursement Program on Tuesday, Sept. 22, in Building 2-100B from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Participants will learn about the program's policy and guidelines, how to access the necessary forms, and getting reimbursed. This workshop is free. Go here for more information and to register, or call Karen Paris x5122.

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