Sandia Labs News Releases

Category Archives: Materials Science

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Detecting nuclear materials using light

LIVERMORE, Calif. — Blueshift Optics, owned by former Sandia employee Joey Carlson, is working to shift the way radioactive materials are detected, using technology that he helped create at Sandia National Laboratories. Radiation detection has long been a critical aspect of national security and efforts to make the world safer. “Agencies are trying to cast […]

Preventing collateral damage in cancer treatment

LIVERMORE, Calif. — Using a simple concept and a patented Sandia sensor that detects radioactive materials, a team at Sandia National Laboratories has developed a patch to stop damage to healthy tissue during proton radiotherapy, one of the best tools to target certain cancerous tumors. “This is an important need, especially among pediatric patients,” said […]

Scorpius images to test nuclear stockpile simulations

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — One thousand feet below the ground, three national defense labs and a remote test site are building Scorpius — a machine as long as a football field — to create images of plutonium as it is compressed with high explosives, creating conditions that exist just prior to a nuclear explosion. These nanosecond […]

Wearable sensor to monitor ‘last line of defense’ antibiotic

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Since the discovery of penicillin in 1928, bacteria have evolved numerous ways to evade or outright ignore the effects of antibiotics. Thankfully, healthcare providers have an arsenal of infrequently used antibiotics that are still effective against otherwise resistant strains of bacteria. Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories have combined earlier work on painless […]

High-tech invisible ink spells trouble for counterfeiters

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A high-tech invisible ink invented at Sandia National Laboratories could become the newest tool for stopping counterfeit goods. The research team is now seeking partnerships to help develop and ultimately commercialize the new technology. Beyond their negative economic impact, counterfeit goods can threaten public health. In 2022, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration […]

Materials scientist named fellow of American Chemical Society

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sandia National Laboratories researcher and manager Hongyou Fan has been named a fellow of the American Chemical Society. Founded in 1876 and chartered by the U.S. Congress, the society has more than 173,000 members in 140 countries and supports scientific inquiry in the field of chemistry. The 2023 class of fellows were […]

Making materials more durable through science

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A team at Sandia National Laboratories developed a molecule that helps change the way some materials react to temperature fluctuations, which makes them more durable. It’s an application that could be used in everything from plastic phone cases to missiles. Polymers, which include various forms of plastics, are made up of many […]

A more holistic and efficient way of testing PPE

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A team at Sandia National Laboratories has developed a faster and more comprehensive way of testing personal protective equipment, or PPE. The basic principle: modeling a device to fit the human form and human behavior. When COVID-19 hit, PPE testing became an urgent need. In March 2020, when the country went into […]

STEM in the Sun keeps learning cool amid record temperatures

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Volunteers from Sandia National Laboratories helped wrap up summer break with fun, hands-on science, technology, engineering and math activities at the fourth annual STEM in the Sun program. With the outdoor temperatures hovering near 100 degrees, this year’s event was moved indoors, creating a unique environment for some sun-based STEM learning. Elementary […]

Stunning discovery: Metals can heal themselves

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Scientists for the first time have witnessed pieces of metal crack, then fuse back together without any human intervention, overturning fundamental scientific theories in the process. If the newly discovered phenomenon can be harnessed, it could usher in an engineering revolution — one in which self-healing engines, bridges and airplanes could reverse […]

Testing coatings to conserve canisters against corrosion

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — As anyone who has lived near the ocean can attest, metal and sea mist are a recipe for corrosion. A nuisance of coastal life, the consequences of these common chemical reactions become far more serious when it is taking aim at the stainless-steel canisters that contain spent nuclear fuel. To shield steel […]

National Black engineer awards celebrate Sandia Labs scientists

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Three Sandia National Laboratories professionals recently received 2023 Black Engineer of the Year Awards. Danielle Stephenson was lauded as a Senior Technology Fellow, Coby Davis as a Science Spectrum Trailblazer and Ned Adams as a Modern-Day Technology Leader. The recipients, all with advanced degrees or certificates, perform several roles at Sandia and […]

New superalloy could cut carbon emissions from power plants

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — As the world looks for ways to cut greenhouse gas emissions, researchers from Sandia National Laboratories have shown that a new 3D-printed superalloy could help power plants generate more electricity while producing less carbon. Sandia scientists, collaborating with researchers at Ames National Laboratory, Iowa State University and Bruker Corp., used a 3D […]

Can clay capture carbon dioxide?

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The atmospheric level of carbon dioxide — a gas that is great at trapping heat, contributing to climate change — is almost double what it was prior to the Industrial Revolution, yet it only constitutes 0.0415% of the air we breathe. This presents a challenge to researchers attempting to design artificial trees […]

Sandia work at the heart of next generation nuclear reactor

LIVERMORE, Calif. — A team of Sandia National Laboratories researchers working on the reactor at the DIII-D National Fusion Facility is testing materials to make the next generation of fusion reactors, in the quest to develop more carbon-free energy sources. These magnetic confinement fusion reactors, called tokamaks, use magnetic fields to shape plasma into a […]

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