A detailed study of blue salt crystals found in two meteorites that crashed to Earth — which included X-ray experiments at Berkeley Lab — found that they contain both liquid water and a mix of complex organic compounds including hydrocarbons and amino acids.
Biological soil crusts exist for extended periods in a dormant state. When it rains, microbes in the crusts become metabolically active, altering the community structure and the soil chemistry. Using a simplified test-tube system and “exometabolomics,” can help understand the connection between the chemical diversity of soil and microbial diversity.
A research team including Berkeley Lab scientists created a comprehensive picture of how the same chemical processes that give lithium-rich battery cathodes their high capacity are also linked to changes in atomic structure that sap their performance.
Berkeley Lab scientists are creating simulated universes — complete with dark matter mock-ups, computer-generated galaxies, quasi quasars, and pseudo supernovae — to better understand real-world observations.
How do gas masks work? Berkeley Lab scientists are using X-rays to study how gas masks developed during World War I are able to handle modern chemical warfare agents. What they learn could eventually lead to more advanced gas masks for both military and civilian use.
A team of earth scientists has shown for the first time that dark fiber — the vast network of unused fiber optic cables installed throughout the country and the world — can be used as sensors for detecting earthquakes, the presence of groundwater, changes in permafrost conditions, and a variety of other subsurface activity.
Technologies that help determine how solar energy affects the grid, benchmark energy savings for low-carbon cities, understand the functions of genes in microbes under different environmental conditions, and simulate how chemical reactions occur and change as fluids travel underground, have received annual R&D 100 awards.
Stripes can be found everywhere, from zebras roaming in the wild to the latest fashion statement. In the world of microscopic physics, periodic stripe patterns can be formed by electrons within so-called quantum materials.
Susan Hubbard has spent a decade studying Sonoma County’s riverbank infiltration system. She and Michelle Newcomer were turning their attention to investigating how extreme events, such as storms and wildfires, affect the groundwater, when disaster struck last month. Now their research has become even more critical.
A new study has revealed a chain mail-like woven microstructure that gives parrotfish teeth their remarkable ability to chomp on coral all day long – the structure could serve as a blueprint for designing ultra-durable synthetic materials.