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Sandia Labs News Releases

Author Archives: Mollie Rappe

Back to the drawing board: Reinventing offshore wind turbines

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Brandon Ennis, Sandia National Laboratories’ offshore wind technical lead, had a radically new idea for offshore wind turbines: instead of a tall, unwieldy tower with blades at the top, he imagined a towerless turbine with blades pulled taut like a bow. This design would allow the massive generator that creates electricity from […]

“We’ve Got the Power”: Sandia technology test delivers electricity to the grid

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — For the first time, Sandia National Laboratories researchers delivered electricity produced by a new power-generating system to the Sandia-Kirtland Air Force Base electrical grid. The system uses heated supercritical carbon dioxide instead of steam to generate electricity and is based on a closed-loop Brayton cycle. The Brayton cycle is named after 19th […]

20th anniversary of Sandia tribal energy internship program

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — 2022 marks a major milestone for Sandia National Laboratories’ groundbreaking tribal energy internship program: two decades of meeting the growing renewable energy technical needs of Native American tribes and providing valuable, real-world experience for Native and Alaska Native STEM students. “My hope for the interns is for them to be leaders in […]

Using the power of the sun to roast green chile

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Every August and September the unmistakable pungent aroma of roasting green chile permeates the air across New Mexico and neighboring states. This delectable staple of regional cuisine is green in color, but roasting the chile pepper to deepen the flavor and make the inedible skin easier to remove is hardly environmentally friendly. […]

Exploring explosives for expanding geothermal energy

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Why are scientists setting off small-scale explosions inside 1-foot cubes of plexiglass? They’re watching how fractures form and grow in a rock-like substance to see if explosives or propellants, similar to jet fuel, can connect geothermal wells in a predictable manner. Geothermal energy has a lot of promise as a renewable energy […]

Powering the moon: Sandia researchers design microgrid for future lunar base

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories is well-known for designing reliable and resilient microgrids for military bases and vital city services. Now, Sandia researchers are working with NASA to design one for the moon. This is not the first time Sandia has partnered with NASA to power equipment on the moon. In fact, Sandia provided […]

International collaboration compares geologic repository assessment tools

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Researchers from Sandia National Laboratories and partner national laboratories will compare their Geologic Disposal Safety Assessment software framework to the safety assessment software of international peers at a late-April workshop. The Sandia-led Geologic Disposal Safety Assessment framework is a computer modeling system designed to answer critical safety assessment questions about future disposal […]

Record-breaking, ultrafast devices step to protecting the grid from EMPs

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Scientists from Sandia National Laboratories have announced a tiny, electronic device that can shunt excess electricity within a few billionths of a second while operating at a record-breaking 6,400 volts — a significant step towards protecting the nation’s electric grid from an electromagnetic pulse. The team published the fabrication and testing results […]

Safer, more powerful batteries for electric cars, power grid

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Solid-state batteries, currently used in small electronic devices like smart watches, have the potential to be safer and more powerful than lithium-ion batteries for things such as electric cars and storing energy from solar panels for later use. However, several technical challenges remain before solid-state batteries can become widespread. A Sandia National […]

Sandia engineer elected fellow of two prestigious national societies

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Babu Chalamala, an engineer and manager of Sandia National Laboratories’ energy storage group, was recently elected fellow of two prestigious national societies. On Jan. 26, he became a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. On Dec. 7, he became a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. According […]

Sandia scientist to lead materials science organization

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Brad Boyce, a materials scientist at Sandia National Laboratories, was elected president of The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society. Boyce will become vice president of the society on March 3 at its annual meeting, and then serve three consecutive one-year terms as vice president, president and past president. He is the second […]

Improved nuclear accident code helps policymakers assess risks from small reactors

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories recently updated the Maccs code to better aid the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the global nuclear industry in assessing the consequences of nuclear accidents. The Maccs code can also evaluate the potential health and environmental risks posed by advanced nuclear reactors and small modular nuclear reactors. Small modular reactors […]

Four Sandians recognized by Society of Women Engineers

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — This fall, four Sandia National Laboratories employees were recognized by the Society of Women Engineers. Laura Biedermann, Annie Dallman, Erica Douglas and Chris LaFleur were recognized for their professional excellence, leadership and support of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM. The society, also known as SWE, has empowered women […]

Common ‘Core’: Using molecular fragments to detect deadly opioids

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories have developed a method to detect trace amounts of synthetic opioids. They plan to combine their approach with miniaturized sensors to create a hand-portable instrument easily used by law enforcement agents for efficient detection in the field. Fentanyl is a fast-acting, opioid-based pain reliever that is 80 […]

Sandia cooks material-storage containers to assess fire safety

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A team at Sandia National Laboratories has completed a series of tests on specially designed stainless-steel containers used by the Department of Energy for storage and transportation of hazardous materials. The engineers, technologists and project managers were surprised to find that the containers did not split open when heated to 2000 degrees […]