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Threat preparedness

Theory aids analysis of nuclear materials

Nuclear emergency teams, safeguards specialists and others may one day benefit from an expanded nuclear fission chain theory and detectors developed by a team of Lawrence Livermore Nationla Laboratory (LLNL) physicists. The Livermore scientists have bolstered their theory for understanding nuclear fission chains -- a cascade of atomic nuclei splitting, each initiated by a…

John Nuckolls to be awarded John S. Foster Jr. Medal for contributions to nuclear security

For more than 60 years, John Nuckolls has dedicated his career to advancing science and technology in support of U.S. national security. In recognition of his outstanding leadership and service to the nation, he has been named the fourth recipient of the John S. Foster Jr. Medal. Established by Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC (LLNS) and bestowed on an annual…

International anthrax conference to explore latest scientific research findings

Scientists and researchers from all over the world who work on Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, and B. cereus and B. thuringiensis, two closely related bacillus species, will be heading to Victoria, British Columbia, in October for the international conference known as "Bacillus ACT." The bi-annual conference, set for Oct. 1-5, will allow members of the…

LLNL supports NYC subway biodefense test

Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL) researchers took to the New York City subway system May 9-13 to help study how a surrogate for a biological agent, such as anthrax, might disperse throughout the nation’s largest rapid transit system as a result of a terrorist attack or an accidental release. As part of a multi-agency test sponsored by the Department of Homeland…

Experiment aims to advance nuclear monitoring

A Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) team played a key role in fielding the recent Source Physics Experiment (SPE-5) detonated at the Nevada Nuclear Security Site (NNSS).The SPE shots, including the most recent one on April 26, consist of a series of six underground high-explosive detonations in hard rock that are designed to improve the United States’ ability…

Need to know more about nuclear forensics? Lab's analytical chemists have it covered

Two Laboratory scientists have teamed with Australian colleagues to author an overview of nuclear forensics that is featured as the cover story for the Feb. 2 edition of Analytical Chemistry magazine.LLNL analytical chemists Mike Kristo and Ruth Kips, in collaboration with three researchers from the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), wrote the…

Moniz awards Ian Hutcheon memorial fellowship

Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz last Thursday awarded the first Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation (DNN) fellowship in honor of the late Ian Hutcheon, a longtime nuclear forensics expert at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, to Thomas Gray.Gray serves as a nonproliferation graduate fellow in the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Office of Defense…

Harsh conditions can't contain researchers' efforts to test radiation detection systems

Researchers from five laboratories and a private company recently spent two days in blistering 100 degree heat testing radiation detection technologies amidst cargo containers.The 15 researchers demonstrated the feasibility of using gamma-ray and neutron imaging detectors to identify radioactive materials using the Laboratory’s cargo container stack testbed."The purpose of…

Nonproliferation research nets excellence medal

Anne Harrington, the National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) deputy administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, recently presented the NNSA Excellence Medal to Leon Berzins for the successful Source Physics Experiment 4 Prime (SPE4) campaign at the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS).The experiments, designed to provide a better understanding of seismo…

Lawrence Livermore licenses tool to improve government computer network security

Government agencies, along with state and local governments, could receive a helping hand from a computer network security tool developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) computer scientists and engineers. The LLNL software-based technology, known as the Network Mapping System (NeMS), has been licensed to Cambridge Global Advisors, a Washington, D.C.-area…

Lawrence Livermore researchers help biomed company land FDA approval for Ebola detection

Researchers from LLNL and three other institutions have assisted a Bay Area biomedical company in advancing its Ebola virus detection test for use.Sunnyvale-based Cepheid has received an emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to utilize its polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay for diagnostic purposes."We received a Cepheid…

Lawrence Livermore researchers use seismic signals to track above-ground explosions

Lawrence Livermore researchers have determined that a tunnel bomb explosion by Syrian rebels was less than 60 tons as claimed by sources.Using seismic stations in Turkey, Livermore scientists Michael Pasyanos and Sean Ford created a method to determine source characteristics of near-earth surface explosions. They found the above-ground tunnel bomb blast under the Wadi al…

Lawrence Livermore technology could help detect diseases in commercial swine industry

Agricultural officials who seek to detect diseases affecting the commercial swine industry may gain a new ally — a biological detection system developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) researchers.A study by LLNL and Kansas State University scientists found that the Lawrence Livermore Microbial Detection Array (LLMDA) could help identify diseases in the…

The accidental entrepreneur

Editor's note: This article is part of an occasional series about LLNL entrepreneurs_______________Martin Casado considers himself to be an accidental entrepreneur.The 38-year-old Bay Area tech executive went from a research career at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to a doctorate at Stanford University, to starting and selling a company and finally to his current…

Lab's Jeff Drocco named Biosecurity Fellow

A spring workshop in the nation’s capital earlier this month provided an auspicious start for LLNL’s Jeff Drocco and other participants in the Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative program.Drocco is one of 28 fellows — selected from nearly 100 applicants — participating in the program at the Center for Biosecurity, which is operated by the University of Pittsburgh’s…

Providing data for nuclear detectives

Fans of the popular TV series "CSI" know that the forensics experts who investigate crime scenes are looking for answers to three key questions: "Who did it; how did they do it; and can we stop them from doing it again?"The field of nuclear forensics, an important element of LLNL’s national security mission, has similar goals and uses similar techniques — but with even…

Technology quickly traces source of tainted food

LIVERMORE, California – Foodborne illnesses kill roughly 3,000 Americans each year and about 1 in 6 are sickened, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Yet most contaminated foods are never traced back to their source. That’s because existing methods to track tainted food following its supply chain from table to farm are highly inefficient,…

Top 10 science and technology stories of 2014

In 2014, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) built on a 62-year tradition of translating basic science into technologies that ensure national security, address pressing real world problems and expand the boundaries of fundamental science.The top stories of the year are a reflection of the Laboratory’s ability to apply its core national security competencies to a…

White captures second award for nuclear forensics work

For the second time, Lab physicist Roger White, a designer in B-Division from the Weapons and Complex Integration (WCI) Directorate, has received an award from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) for his work in post-detonation nuclear forensics.White was named the "top contributor of the quarter" for the third quarter of the fiscal year 2013 (April-June, 2013) for…

Lawrence Livermore researchers unveil carbon nanotube jungles to better detect molecules

LIVERMORE, Calif. - Researchers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich have developed a new method of using nanotubes to detect molecules at extremely low concentrations enabling trace detection of biological threats, explosives and drugs. The joint research team, led by LLNL Engineer Tiziana Bond…