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Showing 41,601 through 41,625 of 70,820 results

VISUALIZING CHEMISTRY: The Progress and Promise of Advanced Chemical Imaging

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Scientists and engineers have long relied on the power of imaging techniques to help see objects invisible to the naked eye, and thus, to advance scientific knowledge. These experts are constantly pushing the limits of technology in pursuit of chemical imaging&#8212the ability to visualize molecular structures and chemical composition in time and space as actual events unfold&#8212from the smallest dimension of a biological system to the widest expanse of a distant galaxy. Chemical imaging has a variety of applications for almost every facet of our daily lives, ranging from medical diagnosis and treatment to the study and design of material properties in new products. In addition to highlighting advances in chemical imaging that could have the greatest impact on critical problems in science and technology, Visualizing Chemistry reviews the current state of chemical imaging technology, identifies promising future developments and their applications, and suggests a research and educational agenda to enable breakthrough improvements.

Going to Extremes: Meeting the Emerging Demand for Durable Polymer Matrix Composites

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Advanced polymer matrix composites (PMC) have many advantages such as light weight and high specific strength that make them useful for many aerospace applications. Enormous uncertainty exists, however, in predicting long-term changes in properties of PMCs under extreme environmental conditions, which has limited their use. To help address this issue, the Department of Defense requested a study from the NRC to identify the barriers and limitations to the use of PMCs in extreme environments. The study was to focus on issues surrounding methodologies for predicting long-term performance. This report provides a review of the challenges facing application of PMCs in extreme environments, the current understanding of PMC properties and behavior, an analysis of the importance of data in developing effective models, and recommendations for improving long-term predictive methodologies.

Superfund And Mining Megasites: Lessons From The Coeur D'alene River Basin

by Committee on Superfund Site Assessment Remediation in the Coeur d'Alene River Basin

For more than 100 years, the Coeur d’ Alene River Basin has been known as "The Silver Valley" for being one of the most productive silver, lead, and zinc mining areas in the United States. Over time, high levels of metals (including lead, arsenic, cadmium, and zinc) were discovered in the local environment and elevated blood lead levels were found in children in communities near the metal-refining and smelter complex. In 1983, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) listed a 21-square mile mining area in northern Idaho as a Superfund site. EPA extended those boundaries in 1998 to include areas throughout the 1500-square mile area Coeur d'Alene River Basin project area. Under Superfund, EPA has developed a plan to clean up the contaminated area that will cost an estimated $359 million over 3 decades--and this effort is only the first step in the cleanup process. Superfund and Mining Megasites: Lessons from Coeur d'Alene River Basin evaluates the issues and concerns that have been raised regarding EPA’s decisions about cleaning up the area. The scientific and technical practices used by EPA to make decisions about human health risks at the Coeur d'Alene River Basin Superfund site are generally sound; however, there are substantial concerns regarding environmental protection decisions, particularly dealing with the effectiveness of long-term plans.

Measuring Performance and Benchmarking Project Management at the Department of Energy

by National Research Council of the National Academies

In 1997, Congress, in the conference report, H.R. 105-271, to the FY1998 Energy and Water Development Appropriation Bill, directed the National Research Council (NRC) to carry out a series of assessments of project management at the Department of Energy (DOE). The final report in that series noted that DOE lacked an objective set of measures for assessing project management quality. The department set up a committee to develop performance measures and benchmarking procedures and asked the NRC for assistance in this effort. This report presents information and guidance for use as a first step toward development of a viable methodology to suit DOE’s needs. It provides a number of possible performance measures, an analysis of the benchmarking process, and a description ways to implement the measures and benchmarking process.

Strengthening Long-term Nuclear Security: Protecting Weapon-usable Material In Russia

by National Research Council of the National Academies

In July 2005, the National Academies released the report Strengthening Long-term Nuclear Security: Protecting Weapon-Usable Material in Russia. The report highlighted several obstacles in the transition from a U.S.-Russian cooperative program to a Russian-directed and Russian-funded fully indigenized program that will ensure the security of 600 tons of weapon-usable nuclear material at a level of international acceptability. Overcoming these obstacles requires an increased political commitment at a number of levels of the Russian Government to modern material protection, control, and accounting systems (MPC&A). Adequate resources must be provided to facilities where weapon-usable material is located for upgrading and maintaining MPC&A systems. Additionally, the technical security systems that are being installed through the cooperative program need to be fully embraced by Russian managers and specialists. The report recommends the establishment of a ten-year indigenization fund of about $500 million provided by Russia and its G-8 partners as a new mechanism for gradually shifting the financial burden of MPC&A to the Russian Government.

Biological Science and Biotechnology in Russia: CONTROLLING DISEASES AND ENHANCING SECURITY

by National Research Council of the National Academies

In July 2005, the National Academies released the report Biological Science and Biotechnology in Russia: Controlling Diseases and Enhancing Security. The report offered a number of recommendations that could help restore Russia’s ability to join with the United States and the broader international community in leading an expanded global effort to control infectious diseases. A proposed bilateral intergovernmental commission could play a pivotal role toward that end as cooperation moves from assistance to partnership. The report proposed the establishment of two model State Sanitary Epidemiological Surveillance Centers in Russia, more focused support of competitively selected Russian research groups as centers of excellence, the promotion of investments in biotechnology niches that are well suited for Russian companies, and expanded opportunities for young scientists to achieve scientific leadership positions in Russia. Also, the report highlighted the importance of U.S. programs that support the integration of former Soviet defense scientists with civilian researchers who had not been involved in military-related activities.

Review of NOAA's Plan for the Scientific Data Stewardship Program

by National Research Council of the National Academies

To better understand our climate system, it is important that we have climate data records (CDRs)--time series of measurements of sufficient length, consistency, and continuity to determine climate variability and change--that possess the accuracy, longevity, and stability to facilitate credible climate monitoring. In 2004, the National Research Council (NRC) published Climate Data Records from Environmental Satellites to provide the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) with initial guidelines on how to develop and implement an effective CDR program. NOAA used this book to draft a plan for a new Scientific Data Stewardship (SDS) program, and then asked NRC to review it. The new program will be responsible for processing, archiving, and distributing observations from satellite and supporting ground-based platforms for monitoring, diagnosing, understanding, predicting, modeling, and assessing climate variation and change. The NRC review outlines several ways in which to improve NOAA's draft plan, most importantly by clarifying advisory mechanisms, providing more detail about how NOAA will coordinate with important partners in generating CDRs, articulating how the program will prioritize its activities, and developing ways to realistically project future costs. However, the draft plan is sound overall and NOAA should immediately begin implementing the SDS program while revising the plan as recommended in the book.

MIDSIZE FACILITIES: The Infrastructure for Materials Research

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Most of the instruments now used for materials research are too complex and expensive for individual investigators to own, operate, and maintain them. Consequently, they have become increasingly consolidated into multi-user, small to midsized research facilities, located at many sites around the country. The proliferation of these facilities, however, has drawn calls for a careful assessment of best principles for their operation. With support from the Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation, the NRC carried out a study to characterize and discuss ways to optimize investments in materials research facility infrastructure with attention to midsize facilities. This report provides an assessment of the nature and importance of mid-sized facilities, their capabilities, challenges they face, current investment, and optimizing their effectiveness.

Advanced Research Instrumentation And Facilities

by National Academy Of Sciences National Academy of Engineering Institute of Medicine of the National Academies

In recent years, the instrumentation needs of the nation’s research communities have changed and expanded. The need for particular instruments has become broader, crossing scientific and engineering disciplines. The growth of interdisciplinary research that focuses on problems defined outside the boundaries of individual disciplines demands more instrumentation. Instruments that were once of interest only to specialists are now required by a wide array of scientists to solve critical research problems. The need for entirely new types of instruments—such as distributed networks, cybertools, and sensor arrays—is increasing. Researchers are increasingly dependent on advanced instruments that require highly specialized knowledge and training for their proper operation and use. The National Academies Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy Committee on Advanced Research Instrumentation was asked to describe the current programs and policies of the major federal research agencies for advanced research instrumentation, the current status of advanced mid-sized research instrumentation on university campuses, and the challenges faced by each. The committee was then asked to evaluate the utility of existing federal programs and to determine the need for and, if applicable, the potential components of an interagency program for advanced research instrumentation.

Toxicogenomic Technologies and Risk Assessment of Environmental Carcinogens: A Workshop Summary

by National Research Council

Toxicogenomics is a discipline that combines expertise in toxicology, genetics, molecular biology, and environmental health to help understand the response of living organisms to stressful environments. The National Research Council convened a workshop to discuss how toxicogenomic data could be applied to improve risk assessments, particularly cancer risk from environmental exposure to chemicals. Risk assessments serve as the basis of many public-health decisions in environmental, occupational, and consumer protection from chemicals. The workshop provided a forum for communities of experts, including those working in "-omics" and those in the policy arena, to discuss where their fields intersect, and how toxicogenomics could address critical knowledge gaps in risk assessments.

Technological Options for User-Authorized HANDGUNS: A Technology-Readiness Assessment

by National Academy of Engineering of the National Academies

The National Academies Press (NAP)--publisher for the National Academies--publishes more than 200 books a year offering the most authoritative views, definitive information, and groundbreaking recommendations on a wide range of topics in science, engineering, and health. Our books are unique in that they are authored by the nation's leading experts in every scientific field.

IMPROVED SEISMIC MONITORING IMPROVED DECISION-MAKING: Assessing the Value of Reduced Uncertainty

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Improved Seismic Monitoring—Improved Decision-Making, describes and assesses the varied economic benefits potentially derived from modernizing and expanding seismic monitoring activities in the United States. These benefits include more effective loss avoidance regulations and strategies, improved understanding of earthquake processes, better engineering design, more effective hazard mitigation strategies, and improved emergency response and recovery. The economic principles that must be applied to determine potential benefits are reviewed and the report concludes that although there is insufficient information available at present to fully quantify all the potential benefits, the annual dollar costs for improved seismic monitoring are in the tens of millions and the potential annual dollar benefits are in the hundreds of millions.

THE ATACAMA Large Millimeter Array: Implications of a Potential Descope

by National Research Council of the National Academies

The 1991 NRC decadal survey for astronomy and astrophysics included a project called the Millimeter Array (MMA). This instrument would be an array of millimeter-wavelength telescopes intended to capture images of star-forming regions and distant star-burst galaxies. With the addition of contributions form Europe, the MMA evolved into the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA), a proposed array of 64, 12-meter antennas. The project is now part of the NSF Major Research Equipment and Facilities budget request. Increased costs, however, have forced the NSF to reconsider the number of antennas. To help with that review, NSF asked the NRC to assess the scientific consequences of reducing the number of active antennas from 60 to either 50 or 40. This report presents an assessment of the effect of downsizing on technical performance specifications, performance degradation, and the ability to perform transformational science, and of the minimum number of antennas needed.

Tank Wastes Planned for On-Site Disposal at Three Department of Energy Sites: The Savannah River Site: Interim Report

by National Research Council of the National Academies

In response to a request from Congress, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) asked the National Academies to evaluate its plans for managing radioactive wastes from spent nuclear fuel at sites in Idaho, South Carolina, and Washington. This interim report evaluates storage facilities at the Savannah River Site in South Carolina, with a particular focus on plans to seal the tanks with grouting. The report finds that tanks at the site do not necessarily need to be sealed shut as soon as the bulk of the waste has been removed. Postponing permanent closure buys more time for the development and application of emerging technologies to remove and better immobilize residual waste, without increasing risks to the environment or delaying final closure of the "tank farms." The report also recommends alternatives to address the lack of tank space at the site, as well as the need for focused R&D activities to reduce the amount and improve the immobilization of residual waste in the tanks and to test some of the assumptions used in evaulating long-term risks at the site.

ESTIMATING THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF LIFESTYLE-RELATED FACTORS TO PREVENTABLE DEATH: A Workshop Summary

by Institute of Medicine of the National Academies

The National Academies Press (NAP)--publisher for the National Academies--publishes more than 200 books a year offering the most authoritative views, definitive information, and groundbreaking recommendations on a wide range of topics in science, engineering, and health. Our books are unique in that they are authored by the nation's leading experts in every scientific field.

An International Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facility: EXPLORING A RUSSIAN SITE AS A PROTOTYPE

by National Research Council of the National Academies

As part of a long-standing collaboration on nuclear nonproliferation, the National Academy of Sciences and the Russian Academy of Sciences held a joint workshop in Moscow in 2003 on the scientific aspects of an international radioactive disposal site in Russia. The passage of Russian laws permitting the importation and storage of high-level radioactive material (primarily spent nuclear fuel from reactors) has engendered interest from a number of foreign governments, including the U.S., in exploring the possibility of transferring material to Russia on a temporary or permanent basis. The workshop focused on the environmental aspects of the general location and characteristics of a possible storage site, transportation to and within the site, containers for transportation and storage, inventory and accountability, audits and inspections, and handling technologies.

An International Perspective On Advancing Technologies And Strategies For Managing Dual-use Risks: Report Of A Workshop

by Institute of Medicine National Research Council of the National Academies

As part of a study of current and future research in the life sciences that contains applications relevant to development of agents of biological origin 5 to 10 years into the future, an NRC/IOM committee held an international workshop in 2004 to examine advancing technologies from a global point of view. Experts from different fields and from around the world presented their diverse outlooks on these technologies and forces that drive technological progress; local and regional capacities for life sciences research, development, and application (both beneficial and nefarious); national perceptions of the dual-use risk of advancing technologies; and strategic measures that have been taken or could be taken to manage the use of technology for malevolent purposes. This report summarizes the formal and informal discussions held at the workshop.

Review Of The Gapp Science And Implementation Plan

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Water managers rely on predicting changes in the hydrologic cycle on seasonal-to-interannual time frames to prepare for water resource needs. Seasonal to interannual predictability of the hydrologic cycle is related to local and remote influences involving land processes and ocean processes, such as the El Niño Southern Oscillation. Although advances in understanding land-surface processes show promise in improving climate prediction, incorporating this information into water management decision processes remains a challenge since current models provide only limited information for predictions on seasonal and longer time scales. To address these needs, the Global Energy and Water Cycle Experiment (GEWEX) Americas Prediction Project (GAPP) was established in 2001 to improve how changes in water resources are predicted on intraseasonal-to-interannual time scales for the continental United States. The GAPP program has developed a science and implementation plan to guide its science activities, which describes strategies for improving prediction and decision support in the hydrologic sciences. This report by the National Research Council provides a review of the GAPP Science and Implementation Plan, outlining suggestions to strengthen the plan and the GAPP program overall.

Navy's Needs In Space For Providing Future Capabilities

by National Research Council of the National Academies

The United States must operate successfully in space to help assure its security and economic well being. The Department of the Navy is a major user of space capabilities, although those capabilities are now primarily provided by DOD, the Air Force, and NOAA. Following a DOD assessment of national space security management in 2001, the Navy commissioned a Panel to Review Space to assess Navy space policy and strategy. As an extension of that review, the NRC was requested by the Navy to examine its needs in space for providing future operational and technical capabilities. This report presents a discussion of the strategic framework of future space needs, the roles and responsibilities for meeting those needs, an assessment of Navy support to space mission areas, and a proposed vision for fulfilling Naval forces space needs.

Autonomous Vehicles In Support Of Naval Operations

by National Research Council of the National Academies

The National Academies Press (NAP)--publisher for the National Academies--publishes more than 200 books a year offering the most authoritative views, definitive information, and groundbreaking recommendations on a wide range of topics in science, engineering, and health. Our books are unique in that they are authored by the nation's leading experts in every scientific field.

Effects of Nuclear Earth-Penetrator and Other Weapons

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Underground facilities are used extensively by many nations to conceal and protect strategic military functions and weapons’ stockpiles. Because of their depth and hardened status, however, many of these strategic hard and deeply buried targets could only be put at risk by conventional or nuclear earth penetrating weapons (EPW). Recently, an engineering feasibility study, the robust nuclear earth penetrator program, was started by DOE and DOD to determine if a more effective EPW could be designed using major components of existing nuclear weapons. This activity has created some controversy about, among other things, the level of collateral damage that would ensue if such a weapon were used. To help clarify this issue, the Congress, in P.L. 107-314, directed the Secretary of Defense to request from the NRC a study of the anticipated health and environmental effects of nuclear earth-penetrators and other weapons and the effect of both conventional and nuclear weapons against the storage of biological and chemical weapons. This report provides the results of those analyses. Based on detailed numerical calculations, the report presents a series of findings comparing the effectiveness and expected collateral damage of nuclear EPW and surface nuclear weapons under a variety of conditions.

Earth Science And Applications From Space: Urgent Needs And Opportunities To Serve The Nation

by National Research Council of the National Academies

The Earth is a dynamic planet whose changes and variations affect our communications, energy, health, food, housing, and transportation infrastructure. Understanding these changes requires a range of observations acquired from a variety of land-, sea-, air-, and space-based platforms. To assist NASA, NOAA, and the USGS develop these tools, the NRC was asked by these agencies to carry out a decadal strategy survey of Earth science and applications from space. In particular, the study is to develop the key scientific questions on which to focus Earth and environmental observations in the period 2005-2015, and a prioritized list of space programs, missions, and supporting activities to address these questions. This interim report outlines a key element of the study—the rationale for tying Earth observations to societal need—and identifies urgent near-term actions needed to achieve this goal. A final report, due in late 2006, will provide the list of recommended space missions, programs, and supporting.

AMERICA'S LAB REPORT: Investigations in High School Science

by Committee on High School Laboratories: Role Vision

Laboratory experiences as a part of most U.S. high science curricula have been taken for granted for decades, but they have rarely been carefully examined. What do they contribute to science learning? What can they contribute to science learning? What is the current status of labs in our nation’s high schools as a context for learning science? This book looks at a range of questions about how laboratory experiences fit into U.S. high schools: What is effective laboratory teaching? What does research tell us about learning in high school science labs? How should student learning in laboratory experiences be assessed? Do all student have access to laboratory experiences? What changes need to be made to improve laboratory experiences for high school students? How can school organization contribute to effective laboratory teaching? With increased attention to the U.S. education system and student outcomes, no part of the high school curriculum should escape scrutiny. This timely book investigates factors that influence a high school laboratory experience, looking closely at what currently takes place and what the goals of those experiences are and should be. Science educators, school administrators, policy makers, and parents will all benefit from a better understanding of the need for laboratory experiences to be an integral part of the science curriculum—and how that can be accomplished.

Strengthening U.s.-russian Cooperation On Nuclear Nonproliferation: Recommendations For Action

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Strengthening U.S.-Russian Cooperation on Nuclear Nonproliferation: Recommendations for Action offers the consensus findings and recommendations of a joint committee established by the U.S. National Academies and the Russian Academy of Sciences to identify methods of improving the ongoing cooperation between the two nations in this area. The report finds that the best way to realize the enormous potential of the U.S.-Russian relationship on nuclear nonproliferation is to reinvigorate the relationship between the two governments as a true partnership. It recommends that the U.S. and Russia establish a Joint High-Level Commission of government and non-government experts to assess their cooperation and devise a strategic plan for moving forward. It suggests that the Senior Interagency Group that was recently established by the two presidents be empowered to carry out this strategic plan. The report then examines three issue areas, making specific recommendations in each: law and taxation, program organization and management, and scientific and technical cooperation.

Multiple Origins, Uncertain Destinies: Hispanics and the American Future

by National Research Council of the National Academies

Given current demographic trends, nearly one in five U.S. residents will be of Hispanic origin by 2025. This major demographic shift and its implications for both the United States and the growing Hispanic population make Multiple Origins, Uncertain Destinies a most timely book. This report from the National Research Council describes how Hispanics are transforming the country as they disperse geographically. It considers their roles in schools, in the labor market, in the health care system, and in U.S. politics. The book looks carefully at the diverse populations encompassed by the term “Hispanic,” representing immigrants and their children and grandchildren from nearly two dozen Spanish-speaking countries. It describes the trajectory of the younger generations and established residents, and it projects long-term trends in population aging, social disparities, and social mobility that have shaped and will shape the Hispanic experience.

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