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Schematic of Thermal Interactions with the Environment and Energy Transfers That Are Needed for the Theoretical Minimum Thermal Load Calculation. Credit: Julia Laser and Josh Bauer from NREL.
January 26th 2021
Heating and cooling buildings is a large part of global energy demand and a significant source of CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions, and in the coming decades the energy demand for heating and cooling - also known as thermal energy - is expected to grow considerably. Scientists and engineers have made many advances in lowering building energy demand by improving energy efficiency in building technologies and reducing energy loss through the building walls and windows.  Now, researchers are... Read More
A scientist works on the MALDI (matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization) mass spectrometer at Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry. (Credit: Thor Swift/Berkeley Lab)
January 14th 2021
One of the aspects of lithium-ion batteries least understood by scientists has now been elucidated by a new research approach, opening the door to major improvements in battery performance, according to a new study by Berkeley Lab scientists. Their study, recently published in the journal Joule, used a technique developed by Berkeley Lab... Read More
2020 American Energy Society Energy Awards Image
January 7th 2021
Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) — including Ravi Prasher — collaborated to write an article on energy, which was recently awarded the best peer-reviewed article for general readers by the American Energy Society. Prasher, associate laboratory director of the Energy Technologies Area (ETA) at Berkeley Lab, along with MIT Professor Asegun... Read More
Rachel Slaybaugh
January 7th 2021
The Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has named Rachel Slaybaugh, associate professor of nuclear engineering at UC Berkeley, to lead Berkeley Lab’s Cyclotron Road Division. The announcement follows an international search. Until recently, Slaybaugh served as a program director at DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), whose mission is to... Read More
Controlling light-matter interactions is central to a variety of important applications, such as quantum dots, which can be used as light emitters and sensors.
December 21st 2020
Understanding how matter interacts with light – its optical properties – is critical in a myriad of energy and biomedical technologies, such as targeted drug delivery, quantum dots, fuel combustion, and cracking of biomass. But calculating these properties is computationally intensive, and the inverse problem – designing a structure with desired optical properties – is even harder. Now Berkeley Lab scientists have developed a machine learning... Read More
Bay Area Battery Summit Speaker Highlights
December 8th 2020
The Bay Area Battery Summit (BABS) just concluded its sixth annual conference, which was held virtually on November 17-18. This year, the two-day conference went beyond batteries and focused on catalyzing collaboration to drive innovation among key players in energy storage.  The summit brought together... Read More
December 8th 2020
The Energy Storage & Distributed Resources Division (ESDR) announced the formation of the Thermal Energy Group earlier this month. ESDR now encompasses six groups spanning a diverse set of research areas ranging from energy conversion to grid integration, all of which are part... Read More
Berkeley Lab scientist Adam Weber (left) and postdoc Jessica Luo look at experimental data for membrane conductivity in a fuel cell fabrication lab. (Credit: Marilyn Chung/Berkeley Lab)
October 12th 2020
Hydrogen fuel cells are on the rise: Germany has rolled out hydrogen-powered trains, the San Francisco Bay Area will soon see the nation’s first hydrogen fuel cell ferry, and sales of fuel-cell vehicles are up globally. It’s a technology with the potential to provide a variety of clean energy options, especially in transportation. Now the Department of Energy has announced several major investments to take hydrogen fuel cells to the next level,... Read More
October 2nd 2020
The Energy Technologies Area (ETA) won three R&D 100 awards in the areas of higher energy efficiency in buildings, making lithium batteries safer and development of an innovative tool; all together the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) took home seven awards. For more than 50 years, the annual R&D 100 Awards have recognized 100 technologies of the past year deemed most innovative and disruptive... Read More
September 30th 2020
Methane is most commonly known as a ubiquitous cleaner energy source, while also being a potent greenhouse gas. It is produced from both natural sources, such as wetlands and large bodies of water, and anthropogenic sources, such as natural-gas reservoirs and livestock. At the same time, methane is a source of many important feedstock chemicals, including blue hydrogen and methanol, which is used for the production of plastics, paints and fuels... Read More
September 3rd 2020
Prominent battery research has made great strides in advancing next-generation rechargeable batteries, which might use lithium-sulfur (Li-S) batteries, rather than the traditional Li-ion batteries commonly found in electric cars and mobile phones. Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have discovered a new type of polymer that can be used as a binder in a Li-S battery and allows valuable electrode materials to be... Read More
Thermal mud pots at Controlled Thermal Resources’ project site at the Salton Sea. (Courtesy CTR)
August 6th 2020
Deep beneath the surface of the Salton Sea, a shallow lake in California’s Imperial County, sits an immense reserve of critical metals that, if unlocked, could power the state’s green economy for years to come. These naturally occurring metals are dissolved in geothermal brine, a byproduct of geothermal energy production. Now the race is on to develop technology to efficiently extract one of the most valuable metals from the... Read More
August 5th 2020
Kristin Persson, a senior faculty scientist in the Energy Storage & Distributed Resources Division within the Energy Technologies Area at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and director of the... Read More
July 1st 2020
Robert Kostecki, a senior scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab), has been elected a vice president of the International Society of Electrochemistry, an organization that advances electrochemical science and technology. In his role on the executive committee, which extends from 2020 to 2022, Kostecki will focus on the society's regional sections.... Read More
June 15th 2020
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Technology Commercialization Fund has awarded $1 million to four projects from Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab) to further collaborative research with industry partners on biofuels, bioproducts, energy microgrid technology, and renewable energy technology. Two of those projects are from Berkeley Lab’s Energy Technologies Area:  Expand Access to and Scalability of a Microgrid Analysis... Read More
June 9th 2020
Marca Doeff, a senior scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab), recently won the election to become secretary of The Electrochemical Society (ECS), a member-led organization dedicated to advancing electrochemical and solid state science. Doeff has worked on materials for electrochromics, lithium and sodium polymer batteries, lithium ion batteries, solid-state lithium batteries and sodium ion batteries with aqueous or organic... Read More
May 18th 2020
A new type of device that has the potential to efficiently store vast amounts of energy has recently been effectively reconfigured and improved by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). This breakthrough could be a stepping-stone to helping our evolving power grid become more resilient. Renewable energy sources such as solar and wind are becoming increasingly economical and necessary additions to the current power... Read More
May 8th 2020
Materials Project Director Kristin Persson (Credit: Roy Kaltschmidt/Berkeley Lab) Kristin Persson is at the helm of a materials revolution. Since 2011, she has led the Materials Project, an open-access online database that virtually delivers the largest collection of materials properties to scientists from every corner of the globe who are searching for the next big thing in batteries, solar... Read More
April 29th 2020
    Ramamoorthy Ramesh, senior faculty scientist in the Materials Sciences Division of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and professor of physics and materials science & engineering at UC Berkeley, has been elected as a foreign member of the... Read More
April 28th 2020

Berkeley Lab researchers (clockwise from top left) Kristin Persson, John Dagdelen, Gerbrand Ceder, and Amalie Trewartha led development of COVIDScholar, a text-mining tool for COVID-19-related scientific literature. (Credit: Berkeley Lab) A team of materials scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) — scientists who normally spend their time researching things like high-performance materials for... Read More
March 17th 2020
With its high energy-to-weight ratio, hydrogen has great potential to be an efficient and clean fuel for cars, auxiliary power, stationary power generation and also as an energy storage medium. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) researchers have been working with various methods of hydrogen production to produce cleaner and more efficient hydrogen for decades. New successful research by Berkeley Lab’s Mike Tucker and his team... Read More
March 10th 2020
Cheap, clean power generation is becoming more of a reality, but energy storage is still one of the biggest barriers to widespread adoption. Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) are continually working to advance technologies that generate, use, or store electricity at a large scale and for long duration (more than four hours). Electrochemical energy technologies play a key role in energy-storage development,... Read More
December 19th 2019
Two new videos highlighting ongoing collaboration and innovative research advancements promoting hydrogen as a large-scale renewable energy resource have recently been completed by a consortium of National Laboratories. Research Scientists from Berkeley Lab, along with Sandia National Laboratories, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Idaho National Laboratory and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory,... Read More
December 12th 2019
Lithium ion is probably the most advanced technology available for the packs of rechargeable batteries you’ll buy this holiday season. The batteries also power the vast majority of consumer devices, electric vehicles, and grid storage systems. Despite their ubiquity, lithium-ion batteries have disadvantages. Metals used in the batteries are becoming expensive and one crucial metal, cobalt, is relatively rare and has had recent media focus on... Read More
November 25th 2019
Following an international search, Robert Kostecki has been appointed director of the Energy Storage and Distributed Resources (ESDR) Division in the Energy Technologies Area (ETA) at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). Kostecki has extensive leadership experience and is a renowned scientist known for his pioneering research in electrochemical systems engineering. His research focuses on performance... Read More
October 30th 2019
Cutting-edge technologies from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) to detect radiation, make buildings more energy efficient, and accelerate neuroscience research were honored with R&D 100 Awards by R&D World magazine. Also recognized was Spack: A Package Manager for HPC Systems, a project led by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and which... Read More
October 29th 2019
Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab) have shown how chemical and structural changes improve the performance of a novel ion-conducting polymer (ionomer) membrane from 3M Company. The team included Ahmet Kusoglu, a research scientist in Berkeley Lab's Energy Conversion Group Using multiple x-ray characterization tools at the Advanced Light Source (ALS), the researchers took a closer look at the structural and chemical... Read More
October 23rd 2019
Scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab) have developed a new infrared approach to probing the first few molecular layers of a liquid in contact with a graphene electrode under operating conditions. The research, conducted at the Advanced Light Source (ALS), offers a new way to study the interfaces that are key to understanding batteries, corrosion, and other bio- and electrochemical phenomena. Solid–liquid interfaces... Read More
October 18th 2019
A recent CNBC video story on ocean desalination technologies, one of several options being explored to address world water shortages, featured Prakash Rao of Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab). Rao, a research scientist within the Lab's Energy Technologies Area, conducts analysis of large-scale desalination, focusing on its energy implications. He has co-authored research, for example, that looks at the... Read More
October 9th 2019
Six researchers in the Energy Technologies Area have been recognized in the annual Director's Awards, which applauds outstanding scientific contributions at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). Tom McKone received the Berkeley Lab Prize, a lifetime achievement award; Nihar Shah, a research scientist/engineer, received a societal impact award; and the Residential Ventilation Team—Woody Delp, Brennan... Read More
October 8th 2019
Adam Weber’s research team sits together in a cluster of offices, cubicles, and laboratories deep in the labyrinth of the Department of Energy’s (DOE's) Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s (Berkeley Lab) Buildings 62 and 70. A staff scientist/engineer who won a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers in 2014, Weber has now collected a solid and multidisciplinary group of undergraduate, graduate, postdoctoral, and staff... Read More

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