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Story tips from the US Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, November 2011
Date:11/8/2011

ium tri-fluoride one of the few materials that shrink when exposed to heat. ORNL's Doug Abernathy contributed to these findings, which appear in a paper recently published in Physical Review Letters. Understanding the phenomenal properties of this material helps scientists design materials with more desirable temperature properties. [Contact: Emma Macmillan, (865) 241-9515; macmillanee@ornl.gov]

DIESEL -- Greater expectations . . .

A recent study of diesel particulate filter performance has revealed positive news for manufacturers and industry, indicating longer service lifetime expectations than ever before. Critical to vehicle emissions control, the filter removes soot and particulates from diesel exhaust. Under excessive stress, it can crack and fail -- yet the technology very often outlasts manufacturer warranties. Exploring the low failure rate, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and General Motors researchers found the apparent elastic modulus of the filter ceramics to be almost an order of magnitude lower than industry-accepted values. According to ORNL's Andrew Wereszczak, "The measurements indicate that while the filter is under thermally-induced strain, such as during regeneration, the actual internal stresses are much lower and mechanical reliability is much higher than manufacturer models have predicted in the past." [Contact: Kathy Graham, (865) 946-1861; grahamkj@ornl.gov]

MATERIALS -- Conductive at the core . . .

Adaptive one-dimensional wires operating at 1 volt could eventually pave the way for oxide electronics, such as electronic devices that mimic human brain function. Using the piezoresponse force microscopy technique, researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory artificially arranged ferroelectric polarization in a "tornado"-like vortex pattern and discovered enhanced conductivity through the center. ORNL's Sergei Ka
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Contact: Ron Walli
wallira@ornl.gov
865-576-0226
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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