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Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, October 2006

EMISSIONS -- Ultra-low sulfur . . .

New low-sulfur diesel available at gas stations and travel centers across the nation has Oak Ridge National Laboratory research behind it, proving that reducing sulfur content in diesel fuel is critical to lessening emissions. Beginning Oct. 15, the Environmental Protection Agency is requiring all retailers to sell diesel containing just 15 parts per million sulfur compared to previous standards of 500 parts per million. Although industry data indicated a need for lower sulfur content in diesel to meet lower emissions standards going into effect next year, a seven-month study at ORNL confirmed at the vehicle-system level that ultra-low sulfur reduced nitrogen oxide and soot emissions by 90 percent. [Contact: Larisa Brass, (865) 574-4163; brasslm@ornl.gov]

MICROSCOPY -- New understanding . . .

Highly detailed images that show how matter organizes first into clusters and then into particles with thousands of atoms are helping researchers better understand catalytic processes. Ultimately, this greater understanding could make these chemical reactions with a wide range of industrial applications happen faster, more efficiently or both. Using Oak Ridge National Laboratory's aberration-corrected electron microscope, Larry Allard and colleagues at the University of Texas at Austin are analyzing nanoparticles of gold, palladium and their alloys. Gold-based catalysts are of particular interest to researchers because of their effectiveness in controlling many types of catalytic reactions. Images gained with ORNL's microscope provide sub-angstrom resolution. Funding is provided by DOE FreedomCAR and Vehicle Technologies. [Contact: Ron Walli, (865) 576-0226; wallira@ornl.gov]

TRANSPORTATION -- Ultralight transit bus . . .

A bus that weighs half as much as conventional buses, boasts three times the
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Contact: Mike Bradley
bradleymk@ornl.gov
865-576-9553
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory
16-Oct-2006


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