News Center

Technique Tunes Into Graphene Nanoribbons’ Electronic Potential

Researchers at Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley have discovered how to directly measure the unique magnetic properties of superthin graphene nanoribbons. The breakthrough could lead to high-speed, low-power nanoscale data storage technologies.

New Technique Visualizes Every Pigment Cell of Zebrafish in 3D

A new technique images every pigment cell of a whole zebrafish in 3D. The work could lead to new insight into melanin’s role in skin cancer.

New Device Advances Commercial Viability of Solar Fuels

A research team has developed a new artificial photosynthesis device component with remarkable stability and longevity as it selectively converts sunlight and carbon dioxide into two promising sources of renewable fuels – ethylene and hydrogen.

New Smart-Roof Coating Enables Year-Round Energy Savings

Scientists have developed an all-season smart-roof coating that keeps homes warm during the winter and cool during the summer – without consuming natural gas or electricity. Research findings point to a groundbreaking technology that outperforms commercial cool-roof systems in energy savings.

These Tiny Liquid Robots Never Run Out of Juice as Long as They Have Food

Scientists at Berkeley Lab have demonstrated the first self-powered, aqueous robot that runs continuously without electricity. The technology has potential as an automated chemical synthesis or drug delivery system for pharmaceuticals.

How Can Next-Gen Computer Chips Reduce Our Carbon Footprint?

Berkeley Lab scientists Maurice Garcia-Sciveres and Ramamoorthy Ramesh discuss how future microchips could perform better – and require less energy – than silicon. Over the next three years, they will lead two of the 10 projects recently awarded nearly $54 million by the Department of Energy to increase energy efficiency in microelectronics design and production.

Chloro-phylling in the Answers to Big Questions

Photosynthesis – the enzyme-based process of converting carbon dioxide into food, using water and sunlight – is literally the foundation of life on Earth, and understanding the reaction at an atomic level could lead to vast production of renewable fuels made from greenhouse gases sucked out of the air. A Berkeley Lab team has been uncovering precise, step-by-step details of photosynthesis for years. We spoke to two members, co-lead author and senior scientist Vittal Yachandra and co-first author and postdoctoral researcher Philipp Simon, about their latest study, shooting stuff with lasers, and why they chose this field.

Sizing Up the Challenges in Extracting Lithium from Geothermal Brine

For geothermal fields around the world, produced geothermal brine has been simply injected back underground, but now it’s become clear that the brines produced at the Salton Sea geothermal field contain an immense amount of lithium, a critical resource need for low-carbon transportation and energy storage. Demand for lithium is skyrocketing, as it is an essential ingredient in lithium-ion batteries. Currently there is very little lithium production in the U.S. and most lithium is imported; however, that may change in the near future.

Big Batteries on Wheels Can Deliver Zero-Emissions Rail While Securing the Grid

The recent dramatic decline in battery prices has created a new possibility for electrification of freight trains. Researchers from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, collaborating with UCLA and UC Berkeley researchers, make the case that the U.S. can retrofit diesel-electric trains with batteries in a way that is cost-competitive with diesel. Doing so would avoid up to 1,000 premature deaths and save the U.S. freight rail sector $94 billion over 20 years from reduced air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.

Berkeley Lab Awarded More Than $13M for Electric Vehicle Battery Research

Berkeley Lab has been awarded more than $13 million for five research projects that will accelerate the development of advanced lithium batteries and smart, connected vehicles, making it easier to switch to electric vehicles.