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Welcome to the Fundamental & Computational Sciences website.
I hope you take the opportunity to explore it and learn about the outstanding people, capabilities and scientific research at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

—Doug Ray, Associate Lab Director

"We strive to make progress on today's important scientific challenges."


Research Highlights

World water scarcity map
Full Story | August 2014

Water Scarcity and Climate Change through 2095
Model projections reveal future water availability based on multiple climate change scenarios and policies

PNNL researchers, working at the Joint Global Change Research Institute, showed the effects of global change on water scarcity using a unique modeling engine. When they incorporated water use and availability and ran scenarios of possible climate mitigation policy targets, they found that without any climate policy to curb carbon emissions, half the world will be living under extreme water scarcity. Some climate mitigation policies may exacerbate water scarcity.

Aluminum EXAFS and zeolite structure
Full Story | August 2014

Creating a GPS for Aluminum Ions
New approach pinpoints locations in simple zeolite catalysts

Employing a combination of methods devised at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the Swiss Light Source, scientists determined the distribution of aluminum ions in zeolites, which are widely used by industry. In the first example of this approach, the scientists analyzed two chemical compositions of a structural variant. They found that the aluminum atoms, which are critical to the catalytic activity, preferentially replace silicon atoms at certain sites.

Molecular structures
Full Story | August 2014

Chromiumís Bonding Angles Let Oxygen Move Quickly
The result is a novel material with potential applications in fuel cell technology

By taking advantage of the natural tendency of chromium atoms to avoid certain bonding environments, scientists have generated a material that allows oxygen to move through it very efficiently, and at relatively low temperatures. Specifically, they found that their attempts to make metallic SrCrO3 lead instead to the formation of semiconducting SrCrO2.8. Because chromium as an ion with a charge of +4 does not like to form 90-degree bonds with oxygen, as it must in SrCrO3, SrCrO2.8 forms instead with a completely different crystal structure. This material contains oxygen deficient planes through which oxygen can diffuse very easily.

Alex Tartakovsky
Full Story | August 2014

Tartakovsky Appointed New Associate Division Director for Computational Mathematics

This month, Dr. Alexandre Tartakovsky joins the Advanced Computing, Mathematics, and Data Division as the full-time Associate Division Director for Computational Mathematics. In his new role, Alex will oversee the talented personnel who compose ACMD Division’s Computational Mathematics group, which includes computational engineering, uncertainty quantification, multiscale mathematics, and computational social sciences teams. Alex’s goal is to continue building PNNL’s Computational Mathematics group to world-class strength. He also will continue his scientific leadership role in applied mathematics through a variety of important projects.

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