Kothe named associate laboratory director for Computing and Computational Sciences

Doug Kothe has been named associate laboratory director for the Computing and Computational Sciences Directorate at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, effective June 6.

Jeff Nichols, the current associate laboratory director for computing and computational sciences, is set to retire on July 1 after 13 years in the position.

Researchers aim to better quantify greenhouse gas emissions from hydropower reservoirs

As the United States moves toward more sustainable and renewable sources of energy, hydropower is expected to play a pivotal role in integrating more intermittent renewables like wind and solar to the electricity grid because hydropower can fill gaps in generation when these forms of energy are unavailable.

Microbes enhance resilience of carbon-rich peatlands to warming

Microorganisms may provide hope that peatlands can withstand hotter temperatures in a changing climate.

Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory discovered that certain bacteria increase the climate resilience of Sphagnum moss, the tiny plant responsible for storing a third of the world’s soil carbon in peat bogs. Heat tolerant microbes transfer that protection to the plants, helping them survive climate warming.

International team visualizes properties of plant cell walls at nanoscale

To optimize biomaterials for reliable, cost-effective paper production, building construction, and biofuel development, researchers often study the structure of plant cells using techniques such as freezing plant samples or placing them in a vacuum. These methods provide valuable data but often cause permanent damage to the samples.

Experts chip away at corrosion for the future of fusion

Practical fusion energy is not just a dream at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Experts in fusion and material science are working together to develop solutions that will make a fusion pilot plant — and ultimately carbon-free, abundant fusion electricity — possible.