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Story tips From the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory -- May 2009
Date:5/6/2009

MATERIALS -- Soft-matter spectrometer . . .

The Spallation Neutron Source has added another instrument to its eventual suite of 25. The Neutron Spin Echo Spectrometer is expected to be best of its class in soft-matter research. The spectrometer is particularly well suited for analyzing molecular motions and mobility, which will be useful for answering questions concerning polymer melts and related behaviors in molecular networks and rubbers, as well as interface changes and interactions in complex fluids, electrolytes and gels. After commissioning is completed, the Neutron Spin Echo Spectrometer will be available to both the neutron science user community and its German government sponsor. [Contact: Bill Cabage, (865) 574-4399; cabagewh@ornl.gov]

TRANSPORTATION -- Wider tires increase cargo load . . .

Wide tires on tractor-trailers can reduce the weight of a rig, enabling additional cargo to be added without compromising fuel efficiency. That conclusion is drawn from an in-depth tractor-trailer performance study managed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Center for Transportation Analysis. The study focused on a 12-month monitoring of a special tractor-trailer fleet traveling more than 700,000 miles across most of the Eastern United States through different terrain and driving conditions. DOE's Office of FreedomCAR and Vehicle Technologies funded the study. [Contact: Fred Strohl, (865) 574-4165; strohlhf@ornl.gov]

BIOENERGY -- Nature at work . . .

In one of the largest experiments of its kind, thousands of cottonwood cuttings planted in common gardens in British Columbia, Oregon and California will help scientists determine which strains are best suited for cellulosic ethanol production. This study, led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory, builds upon what scientists have for years observed about genetic variation among trees in natural popu
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Contact: Ron Walli
wallira@ornl.gov
865-576-0226
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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