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Science Highlights


Science highlights feature research conducted by staff and users at the ALS.

If a Power Point summary slide or a PDF handout of the highlight is available, you will find it linked beneath the highlight listing and on the highlight's page. You may also print a version of a highlight by clicking the print icon associated with each highlight.



Stochastic Domain-Wall Depinning in Magnetic Nanowires Print
Wednesday, 29 July 2009 00:00

Reliably controlling the motion of magnetic domain walls along magnetic nanowires is a key requirement for current technological development of novel classes of logic and storage devices, but understanding the nature of non-deterministic domain-wall motion remains a scientific challenge.

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Towards Heavy Fermions in Europium Intermetallic Compounds Print
Wednesday, 29 July 2009 00:00

A new study of a europium-based compound hints that this compound could join well-known compounds of cerium, ytterbium, and uranium as a new material suitable for research on quantum critical transitions.

 

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Protein Structure Suggests Role as Molecular Adapter Print
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 00:00

To split and copy DNA during replication, all cellular organisms use a multicomponent molecular machine known as the replisome. An essential step in replisome assembly is the loading of ring-shaped helicases (motor proteins) onto the separated strands of DNA.

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P-Glycoprotein Structure and Chemotherapy Resistance Print
Wednesday, 27 May 2009 00:00

A research team from the Scripps Research Institute and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center has obtained the first glimpse of a protein that keeps certain substances, including many drugs, out of cells.

 

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Molecular-Frame Angular Distributions of Resonant Auger Electrons Print
Wednesday, 27 May 2009 00:00

Molecular-frame electron angular distribution (MFAD) measurements provide access to an unprecedented level of detailed information about phenomena involving quantum coherence.

 

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Observation of a Macroscopically Quantum-Entangled Insulator Print
Wednesday, 27 May 2009 00:00

It has recently been proposed that insulators with large band gaps and strong spin-orbit coupling can host a new phase of quantum matter called a topological insulator that is characterized by entangled wavefunctions.

 

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How Dynein Binds to Microtubules Print
Wednesday, 29 April 2009 00:00

Cytoplasmic dynein is a protein complex responsible for the transport of a large variety of cargoes, from specific RNAs and proteins to whole organelles, in a directional fashion along microtubules that serve as cellular conveyor belts.

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Preservation of Fe(II) by Carbon-Rich Matrices in Hydrothermal Plumes Print
Wednesday, 29 April 2009 00:00

There are large regions of the global ocean where iron availability is so low that it limits life. Oceanographers have long explained this anomaly by assuming that the iron in the sea is primarily incorporated as Fe(III) into inorganic minerals.

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Self-Assembly of Polymer Nano-Elements on Sapphire Print
Wednesday, 25 March 2009 00:00

Self-assembly of polymers promises to vastly improve the properties and manufacturing processes of nanostructured materials, since self-assembly is highly parallel, quite versatile, and easy to implement.

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Experimental Test of Self-Shielding in VUV Photodissociation of CO Print
Wednesday, 25 March 2009 00:00

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, and Berkeley Lab have now shown that photodissociation of carbon monoxide (CO) caused by vacuum-ultraviolet (VUV) light from the early sun could generate reservoirs of the heavier isotopes in the solar nebula without the help of self-shielding.

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Probing Core-Hole Localization in Molecular Nitrogen Print
Wednesday, 25 February 2009 00:00

The behavior of the core hole created in molecular x-ray photoemission experiments has provided molecular scientists with a valuable window through which to probe the electronic structure and dynamics of molecules.

 

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Enzyme Structure Provides Insights into Cancer and Aging Print
Wednesday, 25 February 2009 00:00

XPD helicase is an enzyme that unwinds the DNA double helix; it is one component of an essential repair mechanism that maintains the integrity of DNA. XPD is unique, however, in that pinpoint mutations of this single protein are responsible for three different human diseases.

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Reaction-Driven Restructuring of Bimetallic Nanoparticle Catalysts Print
Wednesday, 28 January 2009 00:00

Catalytic systems based on bimetallic particles with controlled size, composition, and structure dispersed on a high-surface-area support are widely used for catalytic reforming, pollution control, alcohol oxidation, and electrocatalysis in fuel cells.

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Nanoscale Chemical Imaging of a Working Catalyst Print
Wednesday, 28 January 2009 00:00

The heterogeneous catalysts used in most chemical processes typically consist of nanoscale metal or metal oxide particles dispersed on high-surface-area supports.

 

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Structure of the Ebola Virus Glycoprotein Bound to an Antibody from a Human Survivor Print
Wednesday, 26 November 2008 00:00

Ebolavirus, one of two members of the family of filoviruses, causes a severe hemorrhagic fever with 50–90% human mortality. That no vaccines or treatments are yet available combined with the frequent re-emergence of the virus, its high prevalence among wildlife, and ease of importation of the virus make it a significant public health concern.

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