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4 ORNL researchers selected for Recovery Act early career funds
Date:2/4/2010

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 4, 2010 -- Four Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers are among the 69 scientists that will receive five-year research grants as part of the Department of Energy's new Early Career Research Program.

The $85 million program, funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act by the department's Office of Science, is designed to support exceptional researchers during the crucial early career years, when many scientists do their most formative work. ORNL's grants will be at least $500,000 per year to cover year-round salary plus research expenses.

Daniel Bardayan of ORNL's Physics Division was selected for "Studies of Nuclear Reactions that Drive Stellar Explosions and Synthesize the Elements," funded by the Office of Nuclear Physics. Bardayan previously received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers and is a former Wigner fellow.

Questions about how the elements were created and what drives stars and stellar explosions can only be answered with measurements of reactions on short-lived, unstable nuclei. Since targets of these short-lived nuclei cannot be fabricated (they decay very quickly) these measurements require accelerator-based experiments with beams of exotic nuclei such as those available at ORNL's Holifield Radioactive Ion Beam Facility (HRIBF).

The goal of Bardayan's project is to combine exotic beams at the HRIBF with a new high-density supersonic gas-jet target to make direct studies of the astrophysical reactions and nuclei that drive stellar explosions and synthesize the elements.

Phillip Bingham of ORNL's Measurement Science & Systems Engineering Division was selected for "Research and Development of Detection Systems for Neutron Imaging," funded by the Office of Basic Energy Sciences.

Bingham's effort is to develop a high-resolution transmission imaging system that will extend the application of neutron imaging to micro-scale structures
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Contact: Bill Cabage
cabagewh@ornl.gov
865-574-4399
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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