Researchers from the CEAs Nuclear Energy Division have, for the first time, been able to make a quantitative prediction of the evolution of radiation-induced defects in a structural material. The results obtained for iron, using multi-scale simulation techniques based on the atomic scale, will help provide greater insight into material aging phenomena in existing nuclear power plants and may be applied to nuclear systems of the future. They are to be published in the "Nature Materials" journal on January 4, 2005.
The evolution kinetics of radiation-induced defects in a material has a direct impact on changes in its microstructure and consequently on its mechanical properties. This makes the quantitative prediction of this kinetics and the phenomena governing it a major challenge for the nuclear industry.
This challenge can now be taken up by intercoupling computer simulation techniques operating on different scales. This is what is meant by multi-scale simulation; the numerical results obtained on one time and space scale were taken and used as input data for modeling on the next higher scale:
Anne-Gabrielle Dauba-Pantanacce | alfa
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Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
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The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
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