Atomic Energy Commission of Syria

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Wed 3 Dec 2014, New discovery sheds light on nuclear reactor fuel behavior during a severe event. UO_2 is the primary fuel component in the majority of existing nuclear reactors, but little is known about the molten state because of its extremely high melting point. Until now, the extremely high temperature and chemical reactivity of the melt have hindered studies of molten UO_2. This lack of fundamental information has made it difficult to evaluate issues associated with the interaction of molten UO_2 with a reactor's zirconium cladding and steel containment vessel. A new discovery about the atomic structure of uranium dioxide will help scientists select the best computational model to simulate severe nuclear reactor accidents. More




Tue 18 Nov 2014. ‘Big Data’ Takes Root in the World of Plant Research. Irish Botanists have launched a database with information that documents significant ‘life events’ for nearly 600 plant species across the globe. They clubbed together with like-minded individuals working across five different continents to compile the huge database of plant life histories, for which data have been gathered over a near 50-year span. At a time in which climate change and increasing human populations are rapidly re-shaping plant distributions, the researchers hope their COMPADRE Plant/Animal Matrix database will foster collaborations between scientists and allow them to better answer questions such as how we can conserve the species that are critical for ecosystem services, and which may provide food for billions. More




Mon 3 Nov 2014. NASA's Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL) mission has succeeded in producing a state of matter known as a Bose-Einstein condensate, a key breakthrough for the instrument leading up to its debut on the International Space Station in late 2016. A Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC) is a collection of atoms in a dilute gas that have been lowered to extremely cold temperatures and all occupy the same quantum state, in which all of the atoms have the same energy levels. At a critical temperature, atoms begin to coalesce, overlap and become synchronized like dancers in a chorus line. The resulting condensate is a new state of matter that behaves like a giant -- by atomic standards -- wave. More




Mon 13 Oct 2014. First Water-Based Nuclear Battery to Generate Electrical Energy. The battery uses a radioactive isotope called strontium-90 that boosts electrochemcial energy in a water-based solution. A nanostructured titanium dioxide electrode (the common element found in sunscreens and UV blockers) with a platinum coating collects and effectively converts energy into electrons. Water acts as a buffer and surface plasmons created in the battery turned out to be very useful in increasing its efficiency. The ionic solution is not easily frozen at very low temperatures and could work in a wide variety of applications including car batteries and spacecraft. More

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