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Scientists at Berkeley Lab and Michigan State University are providing the clearest view yet of an intact bacterial microcompartment, revealing at atomic-level resolution the structure and assembly of the organelle’s protein shell. This work could benefit research in bioenergy and pathogenesis, and it could lead to new methods of bioengineering bacteria for beneficial purposes.

News Release

Researchers Find New Mechanism for Genome Regulation

June 21st, 2017

The mechanisms that separate mixtures of oil and water may also help the organization of a part of our DNA called heterochromatin, according to a new Berkeley Lab study. Researchers found that liquid-liquid phase separation helps heterochromatin organize large parts of the genome into specific regions of the nucleus. The work addresses a long-standing question about how DNA functions are organized in space and time, including how genes are silenced or expressed.

Feature Story

R&D Effort Produces Magnetic Devices to Enable More Powerful X-ray Lasers

June 20th, 2017

Teams of researchers working in a multi-lab collaboration have designed, built, and tested two magnetic devices called superconducting undulators. The effort could lead to a next generation of more powerful, versatile, compact, and durable X-ray lasers.

News Release

Sound Waves Direct Particles to Self-Assemble, Self-Heal

June 19th, 2017

Berkeley Lab scientists have demonstrated how floating particles will assemble and synchronize in response to acoustic waves. Their simple experiment provides a new framework for studying how seemingly lifelike behaviors emerge in response to external forces. The work could help address fundamental questions about energy dissipation and non-equilibrium thermodynamics.

News Release

Keeping California’s Natural Gas System Safe

June 19th, 2017

The massive natural gas leak at Aliso Canyon shined a light on California’s aging natural gas infrastructure. And five years of extreme drought also exacted its toll on transmission pipelines. Now Berkeley Lab has been awarded $4.6 million by the California Energy Commission for two projects aimed at improving the safety and reliability of the state’s natural gas system.

News Release

A Seaweed Derivative Could Be Just What Lithium-Sulfur Batteries Need

June 13th, 2017

Lithium-sulfur batteries have great potential as a low-cost, high-energy, energy source for both vehicle and grid applications. However, they suffer from significant capacity fading. Now scientists from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have made a surprising discovery that could fix this problem.

News Release

Researchers Find a Surprise Just Beneath the Surface in Carbon Dioxide Experiment

June 12th, 2017

X-ray experiments at Berkeley Lab, coupled with theoretical work, revealed how oxygen atoms embedded very near the surface of a copper sample had a more dramatic effect on the early stages of a reaction with carbon dioxide than earlier theories could account for. This work could prove useful in designing new types of materials to make reactions more efficient in converting carbon dioxide into liquid fuels and other products.