Accelerating Science Discovery - Join the Discussion

Published by Dr. William Watson

To celebrate 70 years of advancing scientific knowledge, OSTI is featuring some of the leading scientists and works particularly relevant to the formation of DOE, OSTI, and their predecessor organizations and is highlighting Nobel laureates and other important research figures in DOE’s history.  Their accomplishments were key to the evolution of the Department of Energy, and OSTI’s collections include many of their publications.

In 1951, Edwin M. McMillan and Glenn T. Seaborg were jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovering that the list of chemical elements, previously thought to end with the most massive known element, uranium, was actually longer and included elements whose atoms were even more massive.  Unlike most other elements, the new ones discovered by McMillan and Seaborg were not found ready-made in nature, but were produced artificially.

Edwin McMillan and Glenn Seaborg

Published by Brian O'Donnell
Paul Boyer

Paul Boyer
Courtesy UCLA

To celebrate 70 years of advancing scientific knowledge, OSTI is featuring some of the leading scientists and works particularly relevant to the formation of DOE, OSTI, and their predecessor organizations and is highlighting Nobel laureates and other important research figures in DOE’s history.  Their accomplishments were key to the evolution of the Department of Energy, and OSTI’s collections include many of their publications.

Paul Boyer shared one half of the 1997 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with John E. Walker “for their elucidation of the enzymatic mechanism underlying the synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP)”.  ATP functions as a carrier of energy in all living organisms from bacteria and fungi to plants and animals, including humans.  ATP captures the chemical energy released by the combustion of nutrients and transfers it to reactions that require energy such as the building up of cell components, muscle contraction, transmission of nerve messages, and the functioning of the brain as one reads and processes information.  ATP has been termed the cell’s energy currency and is used as the primary energy source for metabolic functions. 

Published by Sara Studwell

DOE Data ExplorerResearch data is being produced at a rapidly increasing rate, and we at the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) recognize the importance of making data findable and accessible and are committed to being active in the data community.  The DOE Data Explorer (DDE), launched in 2008, is a search tool enabling users to locate and access research data resulting from DOE funding.  Additionally, OSTI joined DataCite in 2011 and established the DOE Data ID Service, through which OSTI assigns persistent identifiers, known as digital object identifiers (DOIs), to datasets submitted by DOE and its contractor and grantee researchers to help increase access to digital data from DOE-funded research.

As product manager for DDE, my goal is to ensure that DDE reflects the ways in which researchers organize their data so that users can easily find or discover data of interest to them.  So, after OSTI held meetings with researchers and stakeholders and listened to what they need in a data search and discovery tool, we developed a plan to reorganize and redesign DDE to better reflect inherent relationships between data objects.  I presented this plan at the SciDataCon conference in September 2016 and subsequently co-authored a paper with colleagues Carly Robinson and Jannean Elliott that further explained the steps being taken to update DDE.

Published by Brian O'Donnell

 

To celebrate 70 years of advancing scientific knowledge, OSTI is featuring some of the leading scientists and works particularly relevant to the formation of DOE, OSTI, and their predecessor organizations and is highlighting Nobel laureates and other important research figures in DOE’s history.  Their accomplishments were key to the evolution of the Department of Energy, and OSTI’s collections include many of their publications.

The 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded jointly to Robert F. Curl Jr., Richard E. Smalley, and Sir Harold W. Kroto for discovery of new forms of the element carbon – called fullerenes – in which the atoms are arranged in closed shells.  Fullerenes are formed when vaporized carbon condenses in an atmosphere of inert gas.  The gaseous carbon is obtained by directing an intense pulse of laser light at a carbon surface.  The released carbon atoms are mixed with a stream of helium gas and combine to form clusters of a few to hundreds of atoms.  The gas is then led into a vacuum chamber where it expands and is cooled to some degrees above absolute zero.  The carbon clusters can then be analyzed with mass spectrometry.

Robert Curl, Jr. and Richard Smalley

Published by Brian O'Donnell
John Pople, Photo courtesy of Northwestern University

To celebrate 70 years of advancing scientific knowledge, OSTI is featuring some of the leading scientists and works particularly relevant to the formation of DOE, OSTI, and their predecessor organizations and is highlighting Nobel laureates and other important research figures in DOE’s history.  Their accomplishments were key to the evolution of the Department of Energy, and OSTI’s collections include many of their publications.

John Pople was born on October 31, 1925, at Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset, England.  Although none of his family had attended university, Pople was able to attend Bristol Grammar School, where at the age of 12 he taught himself secondary level of calculus.  When the school learned of his brilliance, and with the support of his parents, he began intensive studies preparing for a mathematics scholarship to Cambridge.  After arriving at Trinity College in 1943, he completed his degree in two years, worked for an airplane company from 1945 to 1947, and returned to Cambridge and earned his doctoral degree in 1951.  He subsequently was a research fellow at Trinity College and then a lecturer in mathematics at Cambridge from 1954 to 1958.