Research News

New Research Shows Water Present Across the Moon’s Surface

When Apollo astronauts returned from the moon 40 years ago, they brought back souvenirs in the form of moon rocks to be used for scientific analysis, and one of the chief questions was whether there was water to be found in the lunar rocks and soils. The problem they faced was complicated by the fact that most of the rock boxes containing the lunar samples had leaked. This led the scientists to assume that the trace amounts of water they found came from Earth air that had entered the containers. Forty years later, a team of scientists including UT Knoxville’s Larry Taylor has found evidence that the old assumption may be wrong.

Energy Conservation and Storage Expert Zawodzinski Named Fifth UT-ORNL Governor’s Chair

Thomas Zawodzinski, an expert and innovator in fuel cell and related energy storage science and technology, has been named the fifth UT-ORNL Governor’s Chair. Zawodzinski will serve in the chemical and biomolecular engineering department at UT Knoxville and in the physical chemistry of materials group in ORNL’s materials science and technology division.

NIMBioS Celebrates First Year With More Than 400 Participating Scientists, Scholars

The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) at UT Knoxville celebrates its one-year anniversary this month, and thus far, more than 400 individuals from 15 countries and 43 states have participated in various research and educational activities. NIMBioS focuses on advancing research and education at the interface of biology and mathematics. Programs for visitors to NIMBioS facilities began in March 2009, including working groups, investigative workshops, tutorials, and educational opportunities.

UT Researchers’ Statistical Model Predicts Sotomayor Will Be Most Liberal Justice

Researchers in the Department of Political Science at UT Knoxville are predicting that newly confirmed Justice Sonia Sotomayor will cast a liberal vote in roughly 67 percent of cases during her first term on the Supreme Court, which will make her the most liberal member of the current court. These predictions are based upon a statistical analysis of the voting patterns exhibited by previously confirmed Supreme Court justices.

UT Knoxville Undergrads Put Kraken Supercomputer To Use

Top scientists are lined up for a chance to get their hands on the Kraken supercomputer, but a group of undergraduate students from UT Knoxville had a unique opportunity to put the computer to use. The computer, funded by a $65 million grant to UT Knoxville from the National Science Foundation (NSF), is the fastest academic supercomputer in the world, and the opportunity to use the machine is rare enough for elite researchers, much less for undergraduates.