Monthly Archives: May 2010

ORNL at 6:11 a.m.

ORNL photo/Jason Richards
Some folks obviously go to work earlier than I do. I’m allergic to dawn. This early-morning photo, which features the moon over the lab’s Multiprogram Research Facility (MRF), was taken May 28 by Jason Richards of the ORNL staff. Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the Dept. of Energy’s largest science lab.

Jaguar stays No. 1, but China’s Nebulae has theoretical high; Kraken at No. 4

ORNL’s Cray XT5 Jaguar retains the No. 1 ranking on the World TOP500 list of supercmoputers, but China’s Nebulae made a splashy debut at No. 2, with the highest theoretical peak of all (2.98 petaflops). The University of Tennessee/National Science Foundation’s Kraken, which also is housed at ORNL, is ranked No. 4.
The TOP500 list comes out twice a year. Click here for the rankings, etc.


The WSI-Oak Ridge team celebrates at the awards ceremony for the Security Protection Officer Team Competition held last week in Oak Ridge. The Oak Ridge scored 904.673 points out of a possible 1,000 in the four-day event. From left: Kirt Phillippi (coach), Colt Jennings, Lt. Neal Wolfenbarger (team captain), Lynn Bales (coach), Michael Sprain, Brad Carter, Chuck Rushefski, and Richie Wright.

Oak Ridge reactor outage; restart June 16

The High Flux Isotope Reactor at Oak Ridge National Laboratory was shut down early Saturday and will remain down until June 16 for refueling and maintenance.
Ron Crone, ORNL’s research reactors chief, said the short outage will be for routine maintenance and testing.

Zip-zap — laser calibration at ORNL

Measuring the frequency of a helium-neon laser at Metrology Lab.
ORNL photo
In order to use lasers to make highly accurate measurements, scientists must know the precise frequency of the laser. According to info provided by Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the laser frequency calibration system shown in the above photo can measure the frequency of a helium-neon laser to within 0.09 parts-per-billion (0.000000009%) using an iodine-stabilized helium-neon laser standard.

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Kothe: ‘A predictive simulation tool is kind of like a time machine’

kothe.jpgDoug Kothe, scientific director at ORNL’s National Center for Computational Sciences, was pretty pumped up when we talked by phone this afternoon. Kothe, a nuclear engineer with Ph.D. from Purdue, headed the ORNL-led proposal team on the Nuclear Simulation and Modeling Hub competition, and he will become director of what’s being called the Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors (CASL).
“We’re really honored and excited to have this opportunity. I can’t wait to get started,” Kothe said.

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Alexander: ‘The correct decision for our country’

Sen. Lamar Alexander today said the development of a scientific hub for modeling and simulation to advance the nation’s work in nuclear energy is a good move, and he lauded the selection of an ORNL-led team.
“This is the correct decision for our country and a great compliment to the leadership team at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory,” Alexander said in a statement.

ORNL’s Mason on Nuke Hub victory: ‘It’s something we felt was within our sweet spot’

Oak Ridge National Laboratory Director Thom Mason today reveled in victory, as the Dept.of Energy announced that an ORNL-led team would get the hotly contested Nuclear Simulation and Modeling Hub.
Mason praised Doug Kothe, who led the proposal team and will become director of the Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Lightwater Reactors (CASL), talked about the advantage of having TVA’s diverse range of nuclear reactors for use in the project, and said the lab’s background in nuclear engineering and computer modeling and simulation was an important factor.
“It’s something we felt was within our sweet spot,” Mason said. “We’ve got a great set of partners as well.”

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