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One-Pot-to-Prep Biomass for Biofuels

September 10th, 2013|Categories: Biofuels, Biomass, Energy, Facilities, JBEI, News, News & Events, Partnership, Renewable Energy, Research & Capabilities, Transportation Energy|Tags: , , , , , , |

From left, John Gladden, Seema Singh, Blake Simmons, and Jian Shi led the development at JBEI of a one-pot system for the ionic liquid pretreatment and saccharification of switchgrass for biofuel production. (Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt) Sandia researchers with the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) have reported the first demonstration of a one-pot, wash-free, process for the ionic liquid pretreatment and saccharification of switchgrass. Using an imidazolium-based ionic liquid pretreatment, the Sandia team was [...]

Motivating Business to Design a More Resilient Nation, One Building at a Time

September 10th, 2013|Categories: Analysis, Facilities, Infrastructure Security, Modeling & Analysis, News, News & Events, NISAC|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

A little engineering goes a long way: A home in Gilchrist, Texas, designed to resist flood waters survived Hurricane Ike in 2008. (Photo courtesy of FEMA/Joselyne Augustino) Imagine a building resilient enough to allow people to continue their daily tasks even while an emergency is in progress. The self-­reliant building might have its own small electrical generating system to maintain lights, computers, and mobile communications during a power outage, compartmentalized clusters of rooms [...]

Low-­Temperature Combustion Enables Cleaner, More Efficient Engines

September 10th, 2013|Categories: CRF, Energy, Facilities, News, News & Events, Sensors & Optical Diagnostics, Transportation Energy|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

  Using new optical-diagnostic techniques, Sandia combustion researcher Mark Musculus and his colleagues identified the sources of key pollutants from LTC engines. Understanding how LTC works as a combustion technique may lead to broader use of cleaner diesel engines. (Photo by Dino Vournas) Combustion Research Facility lead author, Mark Musculus, along with Sandia researchers Paul Miles and Lyle Pickett, through their latest research paper, “Conceptual models for partially premixed low-temperature diesel combustion,” in [...]

Assessing the Economic Potential of Advanced Biofuels

September 10th, 2013|Categories: Biofuels, Biomass, Energy, Facilities, JBEI, News, News & Events, Partnership, Renewable Energy, Systems Analysis, Transportation Energy|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Dean Dibble prepares samples of switchgrass for analysis. (Photo by Randy Wong) Biofuels hold great promise for the future of transportation energy, but how near we are to that future is, at best, an educated guess with many variables at play. A study led by Scott Paap (Systems Research and Analysis Dept.), “Biochemical production of ethanol and fatty acid ethyl esters from switchgrass: A comparative analysis of environmental and economic performance” (published in Biomass [...]

Fabrication of AMI Demonstration Blade Begun

September 10th, 2013|Categories: Energy, News, News & Events, Partnership, Renewable Energy, Wind Energy|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Spool of RodPack spar cap material. The Advanced Manufacturing Initiative (AMI) is a multiple-year, 3-way collaboration among TPI Composites, Iowa State University, and Sandia National Laboratories. The goal of this collaboration is to improve the viability of U.S.-based wind turbine blade manufacturing through improvements in labor productivity and cycle time. As the AMI effort nears completion, the “capstone” effort is the fabrication of a full utility-scale blade which incorporates many of the material [...]

SSLS Scientist Andy Armstrong Receives 2013 Employee Recognition Award

September 9th, 2013|Categories: EC, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Events, News, News & Events, Solid-State Lighting|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

SSLS EFRC Scientist, Andy Armstrong, recipient of Sandia's 2013 Employee Recognition Award Congratulations to SSLS EFRC Sr. Investigator Andy Armstrong, who was honored with Sandia's 2013 Employee Recognition Award. Andy was awarded in recognition of his development and application of novel defect characterization for III-Nitride materials. Sandia's prestigious Employee Recognition Awards (ERA) are presented to individual employees and teams nominated by their peers and chosen by a Laboratory selection committee for their accomplishments [...]

CRF Researchers Received “Best Paper” Award for Paper Presented at American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ (ASME) 2012 Internal Combustion Engine Division (ICED) Conference

August 28th, 2013|Categories: CRF, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Facilities, News, News & Events, Partnership, Sensors & Optical Diagnostics, Transportation Energy|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Dennis Siebers (left) and Paul Miles and Dipankar Sahoo (two at right) escort visitors at the CRF. Dipankar Sahoo (Engine Combustion Dept.), Ben Petersen (formerly with the Engine Combustion Dept., now with Ford Motor Co.), and Paul Miles (Engine Combustion Dept.) received the ASME-ICED best paper award for “The impact of swirl ratio and injection pressure on fuel-air mixing in a light-duty diesel engine.” This award recognizes the best technical contribution from all papers [...]

Key Hydrogen Report Now Available on OpenEnergyInfo Wiki Site

August 28th, 2013|Categories: CRF, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Facilities, News, News & Events, Systems Analysis, Systems Engineering|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Hydrogen experts at Sandia/California were tapped for their technical expertise through a first-ever contract with the state of California to investigate a May 4 (2012) hydrogen release at the Bay Area’s Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District (AC Transit) hydrogen fueling station in Emeryville, CA.In their investigation, Sandia researchers concluded that an internal component of a pressure-relief valve used in the facility’s fueling station failed, and that the material of construction of the valve component was [...]

Patent Awarded for the Fuel Cell Mobile Light

August 28th, 2013|Categories: Center for Infrastructure Research and Innovation (CIRI), CRF, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Facilities, News, News & Events, Partnership, Systems Engineering|Tags: , , , , |

Fuel-cell-powered mobile lighting system. On May 14, 2013, a U.S. Patent (US 8,439,534 B1) was awarded for a fuel cell mobile lighting system. The Sandia inventors, Lennie Klebanoff (8367) and Terry Johnson (8366) were among other project inventors from the broad collaboration between industry, the State of California (Caltrans), DOE, and Sandia to design, build, field test, and commercialize a fuel cell mobile lighting system to replace traditional diesel-powered systems. The fuel-cell-powered [...]

Sandia, SRI International Sign Pact to Advance Hydrogen and Natural Gas Research for Transportation

August 28th, 2013|Categories: Center for Infrastructure Research and Innovation (CIRI), CRF, Energy, Facilities, Livermore Valley Open Campus (LVOC), News, News & Events, Systems Analysis, Transportation Energy|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Livermore Valley Open Campus at the juncture of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Sandia-California. Sandia and SRI International, an independent research and innovation center, will join forces to explore, test, and evaluate a broad range of hydrogen and natural gas fuel systems and components for transportation applications under a new agreement. The five-year memorandum of understanding is the first agreement in Sandia’s new Center for Infrastructure Research and Innovation (CIRI), an alternative fuel [...]

HelioVolt Modules Installed at RTC Sites

August 14th, 2013|Categories: Energy, News, News & Events, Partnership, Photovoltaic, Photovoltaic Regional Testing Center (PV RTC), Renewable Energy, Solar, Solar Newsletter, SunShot|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The HelioVolt PV array installed at the Sandia RTC site. (Photo credit: Charles Robinson) HelioVolt, Sandia National Laboratories, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and the Florida Solar Energy Center are pleased to announce the successful grid connection of the first half of six arrays to be deployed at the U.S. Department of Energy
Regional Test Centers (RTCs). HelioVolt is installing two 5 kW arrays at each of the following three RTC sites: New Mexico, [...]

Sandia Participation in the 39th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists (PVSC) Conference

August 14th, 2013|Categories: DETL, Distribution Grid Integration, Energy, Facilities, Grid Integration, News, News & Events, Photovoltaic, Photovoltaic Regional Testing Center (PV RTC), Renewable Energy, SMART Grid, Solar|Tags: , , , , , |

Matthew Reno presented a new method to streamline the interconnection study process by simplifying the complex system to an equivalent representation of the feeder with fewer buses while maintaining feeder topology as well as the accuracy of key buses of interest. He demonstrated the method with distributed rooftop PV on a 1262-bus feeder with two buses of interest that is reduced to a 13-bus circuit. A number of Sandia researchers presented papers at [...]

Sandia Researchers Score MRS “Outstanding” Rating Two Years Running

August 7th, 2013|Categories: Advanced Materials Laboratory, Facilities, Materials Science, News, News & Events, Research & Capabilities|Tags: , , , , , |

We developed a simple and economic coating process through interfacial self-­‐assembly of polymers and nanoparticles as an alternative to conventional CVD and sputter-­‐deposited optical films. Through control of structural parameters of assemblies, we were able to fabricate uniform reflective optical coatings. Sandia researcher Hongyou Fan (Advanced Materials Laboratory) was honored for his “outstanding poster” at the 2013 Spring Meeting of the Materials Research Society (MRS) in San Francisco. His was one of only [...]

Climate Change Is the Subject of a New Book

August 1st, 2013|Categories: Analysis, Climate, Global Climate & Energy, Monitoring, News, News & Events, Sensing, Sensing & Monitoring, Water Security|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

A new book, Assessment of Climate Change in the South­west United States (published by Island Press), was released in May 2013. Vince Tidwell (Earth Systems Analysis Dept.) was the lead contributing author for the chapter on “Energy Impacts.” According to the press release, “the book blends the contributions of 120 experts in climate science, economics, ecology, engineering, geography, hydrology, planning, resource management, and other disciplines. This book is one of 10 regional technical inputs to [...]

Sandia and Los Alamos Teams Gear Up for Hurricane Season

August 1st, 2013|Categories: Analysis, Facilities, Infrastructure Security, Modeling, Modeling & Analysis, News, News & Events, NISAC, Partnership|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

National Infrastructure Simulation and Analysis Center (NISAC) teams of infrastructure modelers and analysts, such as this one, work to provide a crisis response to the Department of Homeland Security for national disasters such as hurricanes. (Photo courtesy of NISAC) The Department of Homeland Security’s National Infrastructure Simulation and Analysis Center (NISAC), jointly housed at Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories, studies how hurricanes and other disasters disrupt critical infrastructure, such as roads, electricity, [...]

2013 Electricity Storage Handbook Published

July 31st, 2013|Categories: Energy, Energy Assurance, Energy Storage, Energy Storage Systems, Energy Surety, Grid Integration, Infrastructure Security, News, News & Events, Partnership|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

The sodium-sulfur battery installation provided by NGK Insulators, Ltd., (deployed at Xcel in Lucerne, Minnesota, in 2008) to supplement wind-turbine generation contains 20 50-kW modules with 7.2 MWh of storage capacity and a charge/discharge capacity of 1 MW. The DOE/EPRI 2013 Electricity Storage Handbook in Collaboration with NRECA has been released and is available for download (166 pp + appendices). The handbook was jointly authored by the Sandia (on behalf of DOE Energy [...]

Sandia and Atlas-Copco Secoroc Advance to Phase 2 in Their Geothermal Energy Project

July 31st, 2013|Categories: Energy, Geothermal, News, News & Events, Partnership, Renewable Energy|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Phase 1 drill bit button retention testing. In 2012, the partnership between Sandia and Atlas-Copco Secoroc was awarded a $3.4M DOE grant to develop a down-the-hole (DTH) hammer capable of low-cost, high-production drilling in the extreme heat of deep geothermal wells. The overall DOE goal is to increase the feasibility of geothermal energy production by lowering the cost and financial risk associated with it. Atlas Copco and Sandia were awarded continuation of the [...]

Coupling Local to Nonlocal Continuum Models

July 29th, 2013|Categories: Capabilities, Materials Science, News, News & Events, Office of Science, Research & Capabilities|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The predicted strain field in the stretching of a 1-D elastic bar. The bar is partitioned into local and nonlocal subregions. With the new coupling method, there is zero error in the transition regions between local and nonlocal equations for this particular example problem. Nonlocality, incorporating a length scale within the equations of mechanics, is increasingly recognized as an essential aspect of high-fidelity modeling of the fracture and failure of solids. The nonlocal [...]

Three-Dimensional Graphene Architectures

July 29th, 2013|Categories: Capabilities, Materials Science, News, News & Events, Office of Science, Research & Capabilities|Tags: , , , , , |

Scanning electron microscope images of the effect of temperature on the platinum nanostructure on the 3-D graphene substrates: (A) 25 °C and (B) 70 °C. The mechanical strength and electron mobility of graphene has made it a novel material for a new generation of electronic devices, batteries, and sensors. Currently graphene is predominately grown on 2-D substrates. We have recently reported on a method to make 3-D graphene from interferometric lithographically patterned porous [...]

Jerry Simmons Is One of Three Researchers Named as Laboratory Fellows

July 29th, 2013|Categories: Energy, Energy Efficiency, Materials Science, News, News & Events, Office of Science, Partnership, Research & Capabilities, Solid-State Lighting|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Newly appointed Sandia Fellows Jerry Simmons (left), Ed Cole (center), and John Rowe gather outside Sandia's Joint Computational Engineering Laboratory. (Photo by Randy Montoya) This status is reserved for those who are nationally or internationally recognized pioneers in their fields. It is considered a promotion to the highest level of R&D staff, equivalent to the level of management immediately below Sandia’s vice presidents. “The three new fellows have histories of sustained and equally [...]