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SFI Lecture: The Paradox of the Plankton Meets Public Health: How do So Many Serotypes of Streptococcus pneumoniae Coexist

on July 20, 2012 - 11:56am

The Santa Fe Institute presents a talk by Marc Lipsitch, Director, Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics, Harvard School of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology, Harvard University; SFI External Faculty called:

The Paradox of the Plankton Meets Public Health: How do So Many Serotypes of Streptococcus pneumoniae Coex

• 12:15 p.m. Friday, July 20 • Noyce Conference Room

Marc Lipsitch

Abstract: Streptococcus pneumoniae is a major human pathogen, responsible for ~800,000 deaths annually and much additional morbidity worldwide.

Conjugate vaccines, introduced in 2000, provide

NNSA Awards First NNSA Science and Technology Excellence Award to Michel McCoy from LLNL

on July 20, 2012 - 7:25am

NNSA News:

Mike McCoy shows off his NNSA Science and Technology Award to a standing ovation crowd of his peers. Photo by Jacqueline McBride

LIVERMORE, Calif. – Administrator Thomas D’Agostino of the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today awarded the first NNSA Science and Technology Excellence Award to Dr. Michel McCoy from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) for his leadership with the Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) program.

McCoy serves as the program director for ASC in the Weapons and Complex Integration Principal Directorate at LLNL.

Kristy Ortega Tapped to Lead Local United Way

on July 19, 2012 - 9:15pm

Photo: Kristy Ortega

By Carol A. Clark

Her new role as executive director of United Way feels like coming home for Kristy Ortega. The 30-year-old began working in the heart of the community at 18.

She spent seven years with the Los Alamos Commerce and Development Corporation where she interacted with local businesses, nonprofits and Los Alamos County personnel.

In 2007, Ortega joined the Hilltop House Hotel as marketing and sales director where she coordinated public events.

Ortega left her community oriented career path four years ago to take a job as an operations specialist at Los

LANL and County Close West Road to Vechicle Traffic

on July 19, 2012 - 5:12pm


Because of possible flooding upstream of West Road, LANL and Los Alamos County have decided today that, in the best interest of public safety, beginning Friday, July 20, West Road will be closed to vehicle traffic.

This road closure is expected to extend several weeks until the end of the summer monsoon season.

Residents who live in Western Area will have access to Fairway via Diamond Drive. Access to Pajarito Mountain is unimpeded from Camp May Road off of West Jemez Road (NM 501).

Day Three of Hunger Strike for Los Alamos High School Graduate

on July 18, 2012 - 9:26pm

Alaric Balibrera is on day three of his hunger strike in protest of the continued development of nuclear weapons at Los Alamos National Laboratory.  Photo by Greg Kendall/

Staff Report

Alaric Balibrera grew up in Los Alamos and is a graduate of Los Alamos High School. He studied film and television at UCLA.

Balibrera currently lives in Santa Fe, working as a screenwriter. Balibrera told the Los Alamos Daily Post that as young boy he played in Acid Canyon.

He is one of a number of hunger strikers participating in this protest.

SFI: Seminar on The Immune System Detects Intruders by Randomly Migrating Detectors

on July 18, 2012 - 11:06am


Monday, July 23 • 12:15 p.m. • Medium Conference Room

The Immune System Detects Intruders by Randomly Migrating Detectors

Rob J. De Boer
Theoretical Biology & Bioinformatics, Utrecht University; SFI External Professor

Abstract: The immune system is a distributed system where billions of individual cells, each carrying a unique receptor (detector), scavenge the body to detect the presence of pathogens (intruders) in any of its tissues.

The very few cells detecting a pathogen will expand, generating a large clone of effector cells that together become capable of

LANL: HIV Immunity Study Could Pave Way for Vaccine Development

on July 17, 2012 - 8:29am

LANL News:

  • Los Alamos scientists among Duke-led consortium

Photo: LANL Researcher Bette Korber. Courtesy/LANL

Two Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists are among the team recently funded to explore ways to create the precise immune factors needed for effective vaccines against HIV.

The Duke University-led consortium will largely concentrate on inducing broadly neutralizing antibodies that can prevent HIV-1 infection, as well as on generating protective T-cell and innate immune system responses.

“A vaccine-elicited broadly neutralizing antibody response has the potential to block HIV

16 Countries Take Part in NNSA Radiation Medical Training in Vienna

on July 17, 2012 - 6:31am

NNSA News:

Emergency responders. Courtesy/NNSA

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Participants from 16 countries took part in a National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) international radiation medical (I-MED) training course last week in Vienna, Austria. The training was hosted by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Joseph J. Krol, Rear Admiral, United States Navy (Retired), is the Associate Administrator for NNSA's Office of Emergency Operations. Courtesy/NNSA

“The course instructed medical responders on how to treat injured contaminated patients following a radiation incident,” said

Regional Coalition of LANL Communities Hires MVM Group as Executive Director

on July 16, 2012 - 10:22am


Attorney DeAnza Valencia Sapien will assume the lead role of executive director for the Coalition.

The Regional Coalition of LANL Communities announced Friday that it has contracted with the MVM Group to provide executive director services to help move the Coalition forward.

The MVM Group is a strategic consulting firm focused on the intersection of business strategy, public policy and reputation management.

Partners DeAnza Valencia Sapien, Yasine Mogharreban Armstrong and Lillian Montoya-Rael, lead the firm.

The MVM Group has extensive experience in assisting companies,

SFI Lecture: Everything Is Obvious Once You Know The Answer

on July 16, 2012 - 6:51am

SFI News:

The Santa Fe Community Lecture, "The Myth of Common Sense: Why Everything that Seems Obvious Isn't" is set for 7:30 p.m., Wednesday July 25 at the James A. Little Theater in Santa Fe.

Duncan Watts

Principal Researcher, Microsoft; author,"Everything Is Obvious Once You Know The Answer;" former SFI External Professor

Abstract: Relying on "common sense" is the sensible thing to do, right? Not always. Although common sense can be useful for dealing with everyday problems, it can suffer from systematic failures when applied to complex problems in government, business, and marketing.

Filippenko will deliver 42nd Oppenheimer Memorial Lecture

on July 15, 2012 - 9:28am


Award-winning UC Berkeley astrophysicist Alex Filippenko will deliver the 42nd Oppenheimer Memorial Lecture at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 20, in the Duane Smith Auditorium in Los Alamos.

The lecture, “Dark Energy and the Runaway Universe,” is free and open to the public.

Filippenko has made a career of studying supernovae and using these cosmic beacons to probe the vastness of space.

Filippenko was a member of two independent teams that in 1998 reported, based on observations of supernovae, that the universe was expanding at a runaway pace.

The leaders of

Taylor Receives Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal

on July 15, 2012 - 7:01am

Jacob Taylor, NIST Physicist, Receives Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal for Public Service. Photo by Sam Kittner/

NIST News:

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) physicist Jacob Taylor received a Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal (Sammies) for his advanced scientific research, which has potential for advances in health care, communications, computing, and technology.

Presented the award by Acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank Sept.

U.S. Senatorial Candidate Heather Wilson Raises Concerns for LANL’s Future

on July 13, 2012 - 5:36pm

By Carol A. Clark

U.S. Senatorial candidate Heather Wilson expressed worry "that there is no longer anyone standing up for Los Alamos National Laboratory since Sen. Pete Domenici retired."

"Sending out press releases and speaking about amendments after they've been decided is ineffective," Wilson said during a telephone interview today from Albuquerque.

Known for her strong advocacy for homeland security, the former U.S. Congresswoman cautioned about allowing LANL's Chemical and Metallurgy Research Replacement (CMRR) project to linger in limbo for too long.

"If you delay a facility for

Business Leaders Advocate for LANL Budget

on July 12, 2012 - 10:53pm


A delegation of New Mexico business leaders will travel to Washington D.C. July 16 and 17 to discuss the importance of Los Alamos National Laboratory to the state’s economy.

The delegation will be accompanied by Gov. Susana Martinez' Chief of Staff Keith Gardner and Los Alamos County Council Chair Sharon Stover.

Stover is a member of the Regional Coalition of LANL Communities, which traveled to Washington, D.C., on a similar mission in March. .

The current business group plans to meet with New Mexico’s Congressional delegation, staff from key committees in both the U.S.

NNSA Completes Fourth International Meeting on Next Generation Nuclear Safeguards

on July 12, 2012 - 8:54am

NNSA News:

Laser Ablation Absorbance Ratio Spectroscopy Environmental Sampling (LAARS-ES) ... A scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, is developing a unique destructive analytical capability—funded by NNSA’s Office of Nonproliferation and International Security and the Next Generation Safeguards Initiative—to provide timely detection of undeclared HEU production. Courtesy/NNSA


New Contract Links LANL and Robotics Firm

on July 12, 2012 - 6:54am

From left, David Pesiri and David Seigel of the LANL Technology Transfer office, and Andrew Borene, Andrew Drenner, and Patrick McKinney of ReconRobotics agreed to coordinate on technical advances for the robotics company’s line of tactical micro-robot systems. Courtesy/LANL

LANL News:

Miniature robots are about to get an intelligence boost from a new partnership, linking Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and ReconRobotics, Inc.

Representatives from the two organizations announced today that they have signed a cooperative research and development agreement to “identify, evaluate and

LANL and Sandia Scientists Collaborate with Artists

on July 12, 2012 - 6:47am

The University of New Mexico and 516 ARTS, a nonprofit art space in Downtown Albuquerque, are hosting this summer’s Scientists/Artists Research Collaborations (SARC), in conjunction with the International Symposium on Electronic Art (

The New Mexico Consortium (NMC) and Lockheed Martin are sponsors for this year’s SARC program.

SARC will match artists with scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and Sandia to explore how a creative approach can inform scientific discovery and make the science accessible to a broader audience. The collaborations will also

World Record Neutron Beam at LANL

on July 10, 2012 - 10:06am

Tom Hurry of Plasma Physics adjusts the target positioner and particle beam diagnostics prior to an experiment at Trident. Courtesy/LANL

LANL News:

  • New Method Has Potential to Advance Materials Measurement

Photo: LANL visiting scientist Markus Roth. Courtesy/LANL

Using a one-of-a-kind laser system at Los Alamos National Laboratory, scientists have created the largest neutron beam ever made by a short-pulse laser, breaking a world record.

LANL: Multi-Institutional Team Creates First Artificial Molecules That Switch “Handedness” at Light-Speed

on July 10, 2012 - 9:28am

(Top) Scanning electron microscopy image of optically switchable chiral THz metamolecules, (Bottom) The purple, blue and tan colors represent the gold meta-atom structures at different layers, with the two silicon pads shown in green. Courtesy of Zhang, et. al

LANL News:

  • Researchers Develop Optically Switchable Chiral THz Metamolecules

A multi-institutional team of researchers including scientists with Los Alamos National Laboratory has created the first artificial molecules whose chirality can be rapidly switched from a right-handed to a left-handed orientation with a beam of light on

LANL Public Meeting: Individual Permit for Storm Water

on July 9, 2012 - 12:30pm



The public is invited to attend an Individual Permit for Storm Water meeting Thursday in Pojoaque. 

The Individual Permit for Storm Water encompasses corrective actions and monitoring for 405 sites across Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Presentations at Thursday's meeting will provide an overview of the plan for the summer season and the results of permit related actions and monitoring to date.

The daily routine of placing storm water controls and monitoring after rain storms will be explained as well as the process for earning site completion status from the

NNSA Announces Elimination of 450 Metric Tons of Russian Weapons Highly Enriched Uranium

on July 9, 2012 - 11:00am

NNSA News:

Photo: Removing fresh nuclear fuel from Rossendorf, Germany. Courtesy/

WASHINGTON, D.C.The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced that it has monitored the elimination of more than 450 metric tons of Russian highly enriched uranium (HEU) under a landmark nuclear nonproliferation program.

The 1993 U.S.-Russia HEU Purchase Agreement is now 90 percent complete and by the end of 2013 a total of 500 MT of Russian nuclear weapons HEU will be eliminated by being converted into low enriched uranium (LEU), which is intended for peaceful uses.

Friday Nights at the Bradbury Science Museum

on July 5, 2012 - 7:11pm

Museum Director Linda Deck of the Bradbury Science Museum presents a talk at a recent Rotary Club meeting at Fuller Lodge in which she highlighted current and upcoming museum events. This summer, the Bradbury Science Museum is open until 9 p.m., each Friday night. Photo by Carol A. Clark/

Bradbury Science Museum Director Linda Deck briefs Rotary Club members on upcoming events including Nanoscale Science and Engineering July 13, Entrepreneur Night at The Hive July 20 and Mars Science Laboratory, robots, FIRST Robotics July 27. Photo by Carol A. Clark/


County Issues Community Update as LANL Enters Stage III Fire Restrictions

on July 3, 2012 - 10:29am

COUNTY News Alert:

The Los Alamos County Fire Department (LAFD) would like to ask the public for their continued support and assistance during Extreme Fire Danger.

The Los Alamos National Laboratory properties have entered Stage III Fire Restrictions effective July 3 and the LAFD supports their actions.

Therefore, the Los Alamos Fire Department has implemented the attached restrictions to all County owned or forested areas within Los Alamos County effective at 8 a.m. today, Tuesday July 3. 

Patrols of these areas will be conducted by the LAFD and LAPD throughout the County and residents

LASO, LANL Increase Fire Restrictions

on July 2, 2012 - 4:37pm

The National Nuclear Security Administration’s Los Alamos Site Office (LASO) has upgraded fire restrictions on Department of Energy property to prohibit all outside recreational and off-road driving activities.

The upgrade to Stage III fire restrictions coincides with that of Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Both organizations imposed Stage II fire restrictions last week, and are now increasing their postures to Stage III.

“We are not seeing any near-term relief in the hot and dry weather,” LASO Manager Kevin Smith said.

NNSA, Euratom Conclude Second Joint Steering Committee Meeting

on July 2, 2012 - 2:44pm

NNSA News:

NNSA and Euratom meet in Brussels. Courtesy/NNSA

BRUSSELS – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) have concluded the second Joint Steering Committee meeting under a 2010 Agreement in the field of nuclear material safeguards and security research and development.

The Agreement provides a framework for technical cooperation in nuclear safeguards, border monitoring, nuclear forensics, export controls, and physical protection of nuclear materials and facilities.

The meeting served as an opportunity to reinforce