Research archive

Electric vehicle batteries last longer than previously thought

Electric vehicle batteries last longer than previously thought March 30, 2015:

Scott Moura, UC Berkeley assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering, has co-authored a study with Berkeley Lab colleagues that may alleviate the concerns of battery life in electric vehicles. After analyzing real-world driving patterns, the researchers found that batteries that have lost 20 percent of their originally rated energy storage capacity can still meet the daily travel needs of more than 85 percent of U.S. drivers.

Two new projects will search for dark matter axions

Two new projects will search for dark matter axions March 16, 2015:

Is the mysterious dark matter that makes up 26 percent of the universe composed of a hypothetical particle called an axion, instead of the formerly popular WIMP? The Heising-Simons Foundation gave UC Berkeley physicist Dmitry Budker and nuclear engineering Karl van Bibber funds to look for axions with two different experimental techniques.

With a tug and a twist, new chameleon-like material changes color

With a tug and a twist, new chameleon-like material changes color March 13, 2015:

Taking inspiration from nature, UC Berkeley engineers have created an ultra-thin film that can shift colors as easily as a chameleon’s skin when pulled or twisted.

Probing bacterial immune system could help improve human gene editing

Probing bacterial immune system could help improve human gene editing March 3, 2015:

Jennifer Doudna and James Nuñez are probing the CRISPR/Cas9-based immune system that bacteria have developed to prevent viruses from killing them, and have discovered how they “steal” genetic information from these foreign invaders to remember and attack them in the future. Doudna hopes this information will help to improve targeted gene editing in human and animal cells.

First detailed look at the guts of world’s smallest lifeforms

First detailed look at the guts of world’s smallest lifeforms February 27, 2015:

UC Berkeley and Berkeley Lab scientist Jill Banfield and colleagues have for the first time snapped detailed microscopic photos of what may be the smallest forms of life on Earth: common bacteria that appear to pack their DNA very tightly. The team also sequenced the genomes of these strange bacteria.

New report documents progress in California health care quality

New report documents progress in California health care quality February 17, 2015:

California’s accountable care organizations are growing in size and number, serving more patients, and improving the quality of care—according to a report released today by the Berkeley Forum for Improving California’s Healthcare Delivery System.

Center for Built Environment wins $8 million in research grants

Center for Built Environment wins $8 million in research grants February 17, 2015:

The Center for the Built Environment at the College of Environmental Design has been awarded $8 million to fund core research in radiant systems and task/ambient approaches to workplace comfort, and R&D in new technologies for monitoring and control of commercial buildings.