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ORNL materials researchers get first look at atom-thin boundaries
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 10, 2014—Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have made the first direct observations of a one-dimensional boundary separating two different, atom-thin materials, enabling studies of long-theorized phenomena at these interfaces.

Good vibrations give electrons excitations that rock an insulator to go metallic
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 10, 2014—For more than 50 years, scientists have debated what turns particular oxide insulators, in which electrons barely move, into metals, in which electrons flow freely. Some scientists sided with Nobel Prize–winning physicist Nevill Mott in thinking direct interactions between electrons were the key.

ORNL thermomagnetic processing method provides path to new materials
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Nov. 6, 2014 – For much the same reason LCD televisions offer eye-popping performance, a thermomagnetic processing method developed at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory can advance the performance of polymers.

 
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Atomic trigger shatters mystery of how glass deforms
— Throw a rock through a window made of silica glass, and the brittle, insulating oxide pane shatters. But whack a golf ball with a club made of metallic glass—a resilient conductor that looks like metal—and the glass not only stays intact but also may drive the ball farther than conventional clubs. In light of this contrast, the nature of glass seems anything but clear.

Materials science matchmaker
— Scientific research may be the primary focus of the Department of Energy’s national laboratories, but for David Mandrus, the institutions play an equally important role in shaping the instruction and career paths of students.

Predicting performance
— When Orlando Rios first started analyzing samples of carbon fibers made from a woody plant polymer known as lignin, he noticed something unusual. The material’s microstructure -- a mixture of perfectly spherical nanoscale crystallites distributed within a fibrous matrix -- looked almost too good to be true.

 
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Varela receives Microscopy's Burton Medal
— Maria Varela in the Materials Science and Technology Division's Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy group received the Microscopy Society of America's Burton Medal for early career scientists.

Hispanic Engineers recognize Idrobo
— Juan Carlos Idrobo in the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences' Microscopy Group has been recognized by the Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Award Corp. with the 2014 Outstanding Achievement Award for groundbreaking research in scanning transmission electron microscopy of 2D materials.

David Mullins Elected American Vacuum Society Fellow
— David Mullins of the Chemical Sciences Division was named a 2014 Fellow of the American Vacuum Society. David was honored for his contributions to surface science in the area of soft x-ray excited electron spectroscopy techniques and their use for the study of surface chemistry of adsorbed molecules and catalytic processes.

 
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