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ALSNews Vol. 359 Print
Tuesday, 02 December 2014 16:40

From CO2 to Methanol via Novel Nanocatalysts

302 thumbResearchers have found novel nanocatalysts that lower the barrier to converting carbon dioxide—an abundant greenhouse gas—into methanol—a key commodity used to produce numerous industrial chemicals and fuels. In one case, it worked almost 90 times faster than catalysts commonly used for this reaction today. Read more...

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Designer Proteins Target Epstein-Barr-Virus-Associated Cancer

Researchers used new protein design approaches to develop a potential inhibitor of Epstein-Barr-Virus-associated cancer. The study shows not just how to help defeat the virus, but also opens up a whole new way to design proteins against viruses and ultimately, cancer. Read more...

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Ringleader: Scott Taylor, ALS-EHS Program Manager

taylorThe new ALS-EHS Program (Safety) Manager at the ALS, Scott Taylor, is not so new. Taylor has been working at Berkeley Lab for 30 years now, starting in his early days as a biofuels researcher working with Melvin Calvin. Taylor isn't new to safety either--he has been on the Lab's Safety Review Committee since 1992 and the division safety coordinator for Life Sciences for the past six years. Read more...


Global Thinkers Recognition, Breakthrough Prize for ALS Users

doudnaALS user Jennifer Doudna  and her colleague Emmanuelle Charpentier have been awarded a 2015 Breakthrough Prize for their work on a "revolutionary DNA-editing technique" ( ALSNews Vol. 355).

ALS user Artur Braun was recognized as one of Foreign Policy Magazine's 100 Global Thinkers for work "that captures the power in moth eyes." Doudna was also included as a global thinker "for pioneering a genetic scalpel." Read more...

Science at ALS Featured in "8 Big Ideas" at Science at the Theater

8 ideasEight researchers took the stage at the Kaiser Center Auditorium in Oakland in October to discuss their research, from solar-powered vaccine refrigerators and cool-roof maps, to radiation pills and space dust...and they had to do it in eight minutes. Watch the video and see what research at the ALS is responsible for two of the eight "big ideas!"



Around the ALS in Photos: DOE Secretary Moniz Comes to Visit

monizDuring a busy tour of Berkeley Lab, DOE Secretary Moniz came by the ALS to talk with scientists about current research in energy, accelerators, structural biology, and more. See photos of his visit to the ALS.

UEC Corner

Welcome to New UEC Members, Thanks to Retiring Members!

Following the ALS User Meeting in October, ALS users elected three new UEC members and one student representative to replace Adam Hitchcock, Corie Ralston, Yuri Suzuki, and Mahati Chintapelli (student). The newly elected members are Monica Blum, William Chueh, Alessandro Sepe, and Michael Makowski (student). Chris Cappa will be the new UEC chair in 2015.


Contact: Peter Nico

Operations Update

For the user runs from October 14 to November 16, 2014, the beam reliability [(time scheduled - time lost)/time scheduled)] was 97.7%. For this period, the mean time between failures (MTBF) was 67.2 hours, and the mean time to recovery (MTTR) was 99 minutes. There were no significant interruptions.

Detailed information on reliability is available on the ALS reliability bulletin board, which is located in the hallway between the ALS and the control room in Building 80. Questions about beam reliability should be directed to Dave Richardson ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , x4376).

Long-term and weekly operations schedules are available online. Requests for special operations use of the "scrubbing" shift should be sent to  ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) by 1:00 p.m. Friday. The ring status can be seen in real time at

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