Workshop “Shales at All Scales: Exploring Coupled Processes” Is a Success

This workshop, held June 9–11 in Santa Fe, explored physical and geochemical processes in shale controlled by diagenesis; nano-confinement and pore-scale coupled processes in shale; fracture and coupled processes of shale; and multi-scale, multi-physics behavior of shale. Please see the workshop website for the list of speakers, presentations, and the meeting agenda.

Shales at All Scales gathered 47 participants from many institutions.

Academia (University of Texas; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Ohio State, Purdue, Stanford, and Texas A&M […]

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Sandia Modifies Delft3D Turbine Model

Delft3D is a state-of-the-art, open-source hydrodynamics software suite capable of modeling hydrodynam­ics, sediment transport, and water quality in rivers, lakes, estuaries, and coastal environments. Delft3D was developed by the Dutch company, Deltares.

Because it is actively developed and maintained and because it is held in high regard by researchers and practitioners alike, Sandia is developing Delft3D as a complementary replacement for the aging open-source-version of the Environmental Fluid Dynamics Code (EFDC), which was modified to include […]

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Sandia Research on Rooftop Structural Strength Gains Attention

Two Sandia research reports, “Structural Code Considerations of Solar Rooftop Installations” and “Empirically Derived Strength of Residential Roof Structure for Solar Installations,” have been featured recently in a number of solar trade outlets.

The reports detail rooftop structural analy­sis conducted by Sandia and funded by the US Department of Energy’s SunShot Initia­tive. Test results indicate that the actual load-bearing capacity for residential rooftop structural systems is several times higher than published values. These outcomes provide a […]

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Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Funding Awarded for Feasibility Study

The San Francisco Bay Renewable Energy Electric vessel with Zero Emissions (SF-BREEZE) project intends to revolutionize ferry performance on the bay and beyond.

The project is a partnership between Sandia National Laboratories and the Red & White Fleet to develop a 2 MW hydrogen-powered high-speed passenger ferry to

displace diesel-powered vessels with a zero emission alternative and
greatly reduce the noise pollution those vessels subject Bay-area residents to.

This fuel-cell ferry will be the first commuter-scale, hydrogen-powered ferry and require […]

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Sandia Pilot Program to Assist Small Clean-Energy Companies

The DOE chose Sandia as one of five leads in a pilot that will give small, clean-energy companies access to national laboratory expertise and resources. Sandia will receive $2.75M of DOE’s $20M investment to launch the voucher pilot for small business assistance and collaborative research. “Our pilot, which we’ve named Tech Assist Green (TAG), unites the three NNSA labs—Sandia, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore—to provide a broad array of unique assets from the national lab […]

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Navy/Marine Engineering Command Visits Sandia

Steven Chung, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest (NAVFAC SW),1 Dwight Deakin, Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR),2 Melanie Anderson (NAVAIR PAX River), and David Weir, Marine Corps Installations–West (MCIWEST-MCB Camp Pendleton)3 visited Sandia June 24–25 to discuss several renewable energy/related topics:

wind-turbine/radar interaction,
photovoltaics (PV), and
cybersecurity as it relates to renewable energy.

They also discussed potential collaboration with Sandia on DOE/DOD Energy Big Ideas.

After presenting on their areas of interest, the Engineering Officer visitors toured the National Solar Thermal […]

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Australian Renewable-Energy Official Visits Sandia

At the end of June, Louise Vickery, General Manager, Renewable Futures at the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) visited Sandia.

ARENA manages the Australian government’s commitment to improve the competitiveness of renewable energy technologies and to increase Australia’s renewable energy supply.* ARENA supports all renewable energy technologies and projects across the innovation chain—from laboratory research to large-scale technology demos. The agency hosts a blend of commercial and public sector skills that can be brought to bear […]

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Sandia Researcher Recognized at SunSpec Alliance Annual Meeting

Sandia solar researcher Jay Johnson (in Sandia’s Photovoltaics and Distributed Systems Dept.) attended the SunSpec Alliance Annual Member’s Meeting in San Francisco last Spring and received the 2015 SunSpec McCulloch-Pitts Award in recognition of “innovation, collaboration, and general technical excellence in the area of distributed energy resource control automation.”

The award acknowledged Johnson’s collaborative research as part of a cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) with the SunSpec Alliance. Under the CRADA, Sandia and the SunSpec […]

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Sandia Research Featured on Journal of Physical Chemistry A Cover

As part of Sandia’s core geochemistry program funded by DOE Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES), Sandia’s Randall Cygan (in Sandia’s Geoscience Research and Applications Dept.) and his collaborators, W. Crawford Elliott and his PhD student Laura Zaunbrecher from Georgia State University, have been examining the adsorption mechanisms of metal cations onto soils and sediments. This effort is especially important for the environmental treatment of chemical and radioactive contaminants, including the fission product cesium-137—which is […]

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Sandian Wins Award in 2015 OMAE Hydraulic Modeling Competition

Carlos Michelen (in Sandia’s Water Power Technologies Dept.) and a team of National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) researchers (Michael Lawson, Braulio Garzon, Fabian Wendt, and Yi-Hsiang Yu) won the Offshore Mechanics and Arctic Engineering (OMAE) 2015 Hydraulic Modeling Competition during the 34th ASME International Conference on Ocean, Offshore, and Arctic Engineering in St. Johns, Newfoundland, Canada, in June. The NREL and Sandia team entered the competition and modeled the experimental device (described below) using both

WEC-Sim, […]

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Sandia’s Continuously Recirculating Falling-Particle Receiver Emplaced at Top of Solar Tower

Sandia researchers are working to lower the cost of solar energy systems and improve efficiencies in a big way, thanks to a system of small particles.

This month, engineers lifted Sandia’s continuously recirculating falling-particle receiver to the top of the tower at the National Solar Thermal Test Facility (NSTTF), marking the start of first-of-its-kind testing that will continue through 2015. The Sandia-developed falling-particle receiver drops sand-like ceramic particles through the NSTTF’s concentrated sunlight beam, capturing and […]

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High School Girls Honored for Math, Science Achievements

Sandia presented its annual Math and Science Awards to 31 girls from San Francisco Bay Area high schools, celebrating their academic accomplishments and potential.

“I want to congratulate each of you for your academic excellence and encourage you to continue your passion for math and science,” Marianne Walck, vice president of Sandia’s California site, told the students during the May 20 ceremony. “It’s frustrating that women are still underrepresented in many technical fields. At this event […]

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Hydrogen Fuel Cell Project Seeks to Reduce Port Emissions

Young Brothers, Ltd. to Test Maritime Unit at Port of Honolulu
Can clean, sustainable hydrogen power reduce the concentration of emissions produced at commercial ports? The US Department of Energy (DOE), the US Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD), and Sandia National Laboratories are leading a hydrogen fuel cell deployment project in Hawaii to answer that question.

The project will test the feasibility of replacing diesel generators with hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered generators. Because hydrogen fuel cells produce zero pollutant […]

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Sandia Nuclear Power Safety Expert Elected to National Academy of Engineering

Dana Powers, a recently retired Sandia senior scientist and nuclear safety expert in Sandia’s Advanced Nuclear Energy Programs, who studied the Three Mile Island and Chernobyl nuclear power plant accidents during his more than 40-year career, was elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) “for contributions to commercial nuclear power plant safety worldwide and to radioactive source-term processes.”

Powers is among 79 new members who will receive their diplomas during the induction ceremony […]

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Sandia Teaches Nuclear Safety Course

Measures for keeping nuclear materials out of the wrong hands can be as straightforward as a stout post beam designed to stop massive, speeding trucks in their tire tracks—or they can be as complex as fencing draped with a web of sensors so acute they can differentiate the movements of men from those of jackrabbits. Multiple systems and strategies are necessary to safeguard nuclear materials in nonmilitary facilities such as hospitals, clinics, and nuclear power […]

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DOE-EERE Deputy Assistant Secretary Hollett Visits Sandia

In his role as Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Power, Douglas Hollett oversees research, development, and demonstration of a diverse clean-energy portfolio that includes power generation from wind, solar, geothermal, conventional hydropower, and marine and hydrokinetic resources, as well as grid-integration of these renewable technologies.

During his June 10th visit, Mr. Hollett toured

the National Solar Thermal Test Facility (NSTTF),
the Photovoltaic Systems Evaluation Laboratory (PSEL), and
the […]

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Energy Council Executive Committee Visits Sandia

Energy Council legislators oversee energy and related environmental regulation in North American states/provinces where energy is important to the employment base and fiscal well-being. The Energy Council provides a larger context in which each jurisdiction may consider its particular concerns.

The Council’s interests range from fossil energy to renewables, from energy production to its transmission/distribution, and from federal regulation to state/provincial oversight.

On June 17th, the 21 members of the Energy Council’s Exec­utive Committee toured

the National Solar […]

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Sandia Paper Wins Recognition by the Transportation Research Board

The paper, “The implications of modeling range and infrastructure barriers to battery electric vehicle adoption,” authored by

Garrett Barter (no longer at Sandia, but formerly in our Systems Research & Analysis II Dept.),
Mike Tamor (Ford Motor Company),
Dawn Manley (Senior Manager in Sandia’s Chemical Sciences Group), and
Todd West (Manager of Sandia’s Systems Research & Analysis II Dept.),

which was presented at the 94th Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting, has been awarded the McNutt Award for excellence in automotive […]

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Sandia, Georgia Institute of Technology Form Academic Collaboration

In early June, Sandia and the Georgia Tech signed a five-year memorandum of understanding (MOU), establishing a strategic collaboration that seeks to solve science and technology problems of national importance in the areas of energy and grid security, advanced manufacturing, computer science and data analytics, microsystems and sensors, cybersecurity, and materials science. The MOU’s goals are to: solve major national problems; engage talented researchers to work on practical, complex problems early in their academic careers; and […]

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Digital In-Line Holography Helps Researchers ‘See’ into Fiery Fuels

Accidents, such as trucks crashing on a highway or rockets failing on a launch pad, can create catastrophic fires. It’s important to understand how burning droplets of fuel are generated and behave in such cases. Sandia researchers developed 3-D measurement techniques based on digital in-line holography (DIH). Sandia advanced DIH techniques with new algorithms to mine critical information from recorded holograms and new applications in tough fire environments, said Daniel Guildenbecher (in Sandia’s Diagnostic Science […]

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