2014 News Releases

More information and visuals that are not available electronically may be obtained by contacting the NRL Public Affairs Office. New items are added as they are released.

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Scientific & Technical Interest
January 7, 2014
NRL has taken a 96,000-pound piece of equipment that was used in the 1940s and is refurbishing it for use in research today.
January 28, 2014
Scientists at NRL have created a new type of tunnel device structure in which the tunnel barrier and transport channel are made of the same material, graphene. This discovery opens an entirely new avenue for making highly functional, scalable graphene-based electronic and spintronic devices a reality.
February 19, 2014
NRL scientists suggest a method that could significantly increase the efficiency of green-blue- ultraviolet light-emitting diodes based on GaInN/GaN, AlGaN/GaN and AlInN/GaN quantum wells. Their approach could enable advances in solid state lightening and the creation of low threshold lasers and high power light emitting diodes.
March 5, 2014
The Navy developed Global Ocean Forecast System (GOFS) represents dual use technology that will benefit civilian interests.
March 10, 2014
The Pentagon Channel's pilot episode of 'Armed with Science' is airing 9 a.m. and 1 and 5 p.m. EST on March 10 and will delve into Navy Research Laboratory and Army Research Laboratory science that shapes the future of defense. In the pilot episode, viewers get an inside look at NRL space robotics research and ARL work in novel weapons design and infrared imaging.
March 12, 2014
Dr. Paul Jaffe, a spacecraft engineer at NRL, has built and tested a module to capture and transmit solar power; including a 'step' variation, which is in the patent process. Assembled in satellite array, modules could beam power to on-Earth receiver, providing sustainable, base-load power for a city or military missions.
March 13, 2014
NRL scientists have spent the past two years working with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency to better predict pending epidemics and regional disease outbreaks.
March 17, 2014
Dr. Jason Jolliff, an oceanographer with the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), published a paper showing combined COAMPS and BioCast data predicted where oil would go after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill. His method applies to predicting ocean optical properties for mine detection and other U.S. Navy missions.
March 19, 2014
NRL scientists are part of a research team that has detected water vapor in the atmosphere of a planet outside our solar system.
March 21, 2014
U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) Oceanography Division scientists deployed moorings in the international waters of the Bay of Bengal during December 2013 from the R/V Roger Revelle. Observations collected through 2015 will improve predictions for naval operations, via NRL's forecasting tool, COAMPS.
March 24, 2014
Robotics research teams from Virginia Tech and the University of Pennsylvania demonstrated the most current developments in advanced autonomous systems to assist in discovery, control, and damage control of shipboard fires using humanoid robots.
March 31, 2014
On April 3rd, 2014, a satellite carrying a U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) space weather instrument will launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base. Called the Special Sensor Ultraviolet Limb Imager (SSULI), "SSULI makes accurate measurements of the upper atmosphere and ionosphere that are ultimately useful to the warfighter," says Dr. Scott Budzien, the NRL Program Manager.
April 7, 2014
Navy researchers demonstrate proof-of-concept in first flight of an internal combustion powered model aircraft fueled by a novel gas-to-liquid process that uses seawater as carbon feedstock.
April 14, 2014
The inaugural shot was fired March 7 to commission the next chapter in weapons research for the Navy and U.S. military forces. The Small Railgun is designed to operate at several launches per minute from a mobile platform using advanced battery technology.
April 17, 2014
Dr. Brandy White, in the NRL Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering, is making materials that capture entire classes of contaminants; then break them down into something harmless. Her technology is stable and can be used for clothing, air filters, or even coated on windows and vehicles.
April 22, 2014
NRL-Stennis Space Center has partnered with Hancock County School District in STEM outreach efforts since 2006. Since that time, the students have shown a steady increase in their scores on the Mississippi Science Test.
April 29, 2014
NRL scientists have developed a method to fabricate nanocrystalline spinel that is 50% harder than the current spinel armor materials used in military vehicles. This harder spinel offers the potential for better armor windows in military vehicles, which would provide improved protection and other benefits for personnel and equipment.
May 1, 2014
"GelMan" is not the latest comic book superhero—though he has been: shot at, stood near explosions, dropped from towers, and been held underwater. Made up of synthetic bones and soft tissue, the GelMan surrogates help U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) Materials Science and Technology Division scientists understand how helmets and armor protect our real heroes in uniform.
June 11, 2014
Dr. Marc Raphael, a physicist at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), leads a team that has become the first to image protein secretions from cells in real-time using live-cell microscopy. A major breakthrough for biology and medicine, they've invented a way to put protein-specific nanosensors on microscope coverslips; the sensors change in brightness as the cell sends proteins into its environment.
June 29, 2014
NRL physicists have joined with researchers from Germany and Japan, using a scanning tunneling microscope to create quantum dots with identical, deterministic sizes. This achievement opens the door to quantum dot architectures completely free of uncontrolled variations, an important goal for technologies from nanophotonics to quantum information processing as well as for fundamental studies.
July 17, 2014
The U.S. Army's looking at helmet prototypes with optional parts to protect the face and jaw from various threats, including blast waves. But, as Dr. David Mott — an aerospace engineer at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) — says, more parts lead to more surprises. He and colleagues Ted Young and Doug Schwer have published their findings with the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
July 21, 2014
At medium altitudes ranging from 6,000 feet to 20,000 feet above mean sea level, water droplets in altocumulus clouds can remain in a supercooled liquid phase that cannot be reasonably resolved in current atmospheric models. New meteorological research characterizes mid-level, mixed phase altocumulus clouds in unprecedented detail.
July 28, 2014
In an archaeological survey conducted at NRL, archaeologists have uncovered prehistoric and historical artifacts that open a window to early life on the NRL property.
August 26, 2014
On 15 of its vehicles, Fire Department New York (FDNY) can now automatically see which firefighters are nearby from the onboard computer and relay that information to the city's Operations Center. The system was invented by David DeRieux of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) Space Systems, along with Michael Manning of Manning RF and in close partnership with FDNY.
September 3, 2014
When a satellite is launched into space, there's sometimes room on the rocket for a few mini satellites to hitch a ride, too. Adam Thurn, an Aerospace Engineer at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), has invented a nichrome burn wire mechanism for these CubeSats, as they're called, to deploy something once in orbit. "This is developed as a low-cost, simple mechanism that would do different deployables on a satellite like that," he says.
September 5, 2014
NRL scientist Dr. John Carr is part of an international team that has discovered what they believe is evidence of a planet forming around a star known as HD 100546 located about 335 light years from Earth.
September 9, 2014
The Administrator met with NRL leadership and employees at the laboratory's headquarters for a first-hand look at the Navy's space program facilities and collaborative research aiding NASA in achieving its mission goals.
September 18, 2014
On September 20, the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) will launch a small, spherical satellite called SpinSat. "It's a multifold mission," says Andy Nicholas, the Primary Investigator, "but the primary mission is demonstration of a new thruster technology." SpinSat will also be used to test the space surveillance network and monitor the effects of atmospheric drag.
September 19, 2014
Since 2004, the CanSat competition has become an annual event designed to foster student growth in multiple disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Participating in the event's 10-year anniversary were university and college teams from around the nation, as well as South America, Europe, and Asia.
September 24, 2014
Oxide nanoparticles have been shown to be crucial components in numerous applications to include electronic and magnetic devices, energy storage and generation, and as magnetic nanoparticles for use in magnetic resonance imaging. An important advantage of this novel method is the capability of creating bulk quantities of materials in a single step.
September 29, 2014
Scientists know that weather in space impacts activity here on Earth, so NRL scientist Dr. Brian Wood is analyzing ionospheric disturbances to determine their effect on ground-based satellite navigation systems.
October 1, 2014
NRL research physicist Dr. Rhonda Stroud and materials engineer Dr. Nabil Bassim are part of an international preliminary examination team that has spent the last six years analyzing samples from the NASA Stardust Interstellar Dust Collector.
October 8, 2014
It started as way to patch together radio communications for users "on-the-move"; but now Software Reprogrammable Payload (SRP) is also a way for troops and Command to share images and other data, even across remote areas, and engage in electronic warfare. Chris Huffine of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) leads SRP development and testing, and NRL plans to transition 100 SRPs to U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) Aviation starting in 2016.
October 27, 2014
After a lot of research into dog behavior, including watching hundreds of hours of tapes of handlers and their IED-detecting dogs in Iraq, Adam Moses of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) created the ROVER program. It runs off Xbox Kinect and could help dog handlers practice commands and learning to read a dog's silent cues. Says Moses, "ONR [The Office of Naval Research] wanted a way for the human to train with a dog, with a virtual dog, that you can train with anytime, anywhere."
November 17, 2014
The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) has partnered with a power company to apply its pulsed electron beam technology to reduce the nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide (NOx) emitted by coal power plants. "This an opportunity for NRL to a get a technology that we developed here out in the real world," says Dr. John Sethian, the plasma physicist leading the project at NRL, "not only to show the technology works, but that NRL's contributing to cleaner energy."
November 18, 2014
Around the globe, billions of pounds of agricultural waste are generated every year. Scientists at NRL are exploring ways to convert this waste into high-value silicon carbide that can be used for a variety of electronic and structural applications.
November 19, 2014
The Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), in collaboration with the DOE's Energy Sciences Network (ESnet), the International Center for Advanced Internet Research (iCAIR) at Northwestern University, the Center for Data Intensive Science (CDIS) at the University of Chicago, the Open Cloud Consortium (OCC) and significant industry support, have conducted a 100 gigabits per second (100G) remote I/O demonstration at the SC14 supercomputing conference in New Orleans, LA.
November 20, 2014
Researchers have demonstrated that confined surface phonon polaritons within hexagonal boron nitride exhibit unique metamaterial properties that enable novel nanoscale optical devices.
December 18, 2014
Scientists at NRL along with Mercury Continuity have successfully demonstrated the Tactical Reachback Extended Communications (TREC) system in the port of Miami.

Featured Stories
January 16, 2014
NRL scientists are conducting research to improve the detection of weapons of mass destruction in maritime environments. In recognition of their efforts, they recently received a Best Paper Award at the 2013 IEEE Conference on Technologies for Homeland Security.
January 24, 2014
Dr. Jeremy Robinson of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) is a recipient of the 2012 Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). He researches how graphene can be used to detect chemicals, and nanoelectronic and radio frequency communication applications.
January 29, 2014
Satellite Meteorological Applications Section Chief, Jeffrey Hawkins, receives the award for significant leadership in the effectiveness of Space Based Environmental Monitoring Analysis.
February 24, 2014
NRL scientists have demonstrated for the first time that they can electrically access the remarkable properties predicted for a topological insulator. This accomplishment identifies a successful electrical approach that provides direct access to the topological insulator surface state spin system, significantly advances our fundamental understanding of this new quantum state, and enables use of the remarkable properties these materials offer for future technological applications.
March 11, 2014
The P.S. Theocaris award is conferred upon candidates identified by the First Class of Exact Sciences of the Academy of Athens.
March 18, 2014
Mehlhorn is named Fellow of the IEEE for his comprehensive knowledge of intense, pulsed electron and ion beams, and corresponding research conducted at the Sandia National Laboratories.
March 25, 2014
The design firm Wiley Wilson, of Lynchburg, Virginia has received the Grand Award from the American Council of Engineering Excellence Awards competition for the design of NRL's Laboratory for Autonomous Systems Research building.
May 5, 2014
On April 22, the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) recognized the inventor of the lab's 5,000th patent: James Dykes, a mathematician and oceanographer at NRL Stennis Space Center.
May 29, 2014
Beginning at NRL in 1943 as a research physicist, Easton worked on the development of radar beacons and blind landing systems. His work exploiting space-based systems for geodesy, navigation, and timing laid the foundations for the modern day global positioning system, better known as GPS.
June 19, 2014
Dr. Judith Lean, the Senior Scientist for Sun-Earth System Research at NRL, has been honored by having two of her papers selected for publication in Geophysical Research Letters "Top 40" edition.
June 25, 2014
Dr. Jeffrey W. Long, staff scientist in the Surface Chemistry Branch of NRL's Chemistry Division, has been selected to receive the Department of Defense's first "Laboratory Scientist of the Quarter" Award.
July 8, 2014
Dr. Robert E. Morris, a research chemist at NRL, has been honored with the Department of the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award. He is recognized for his superlative scientific achievements in fuel analytics.
July 10, 2014
Dr. Rita C. Manak, head of NRL's Technology Transfer Office, has been elected to the Executive Board of the Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) as a Member-at-Large for a two-year term beginning October 2014.
July 24, 2014
World's largest operating krypton fluoride (KrF) gas laser becomes world's fastest, achieving a record projectile velocity equivalent to two-and-a-quarter million miles per hour.
August 1, 2014
Captain Mark Bruington, USN, assumed the duties as NRL's 38th Commanding Officer during a formal Change of Command ceremony in Washington, D.C. on Friday, August 1, 2014.
August 12, 2014
Dr. Igor Medintz, a research biologist, has been awarded the 2013 Arthur S. Flemming Award in the category of Basic Science. He is recognized for his work in the growing field of bionanotechnology.
August 20, 2014
Eighteen NRL scientists and engineers representing ten NRL research divisions were recognized with the prestigious Dr. Delores M. Etter Top Scientist and Engineer of the Year award.
August 22, 2014
For eight years in a row, Diversity/Careers in Engineering & Information Technology magazine has named NRL a "Best Diversity Company."
September 17, 2014
An interdisciplinary team at NRL has received the Japan Society of Applied Physics 2014 Outstanding Paper Award. The award is only given to a select group of papers that present excellent achievement in applied physics and are published in the last 24 months in Japan Society of Applied Physics journals.
October 10, 2014
NRL's Laboratory for Autonomous Systems Research (LASR) has achieved LEED silver certification. LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a sustainable building certification program, developed by the U.S. Green Building Council, which recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices.
October 20, 2014
U.S. Navy Scientific Development Squadron ONE (VXS-1), the 'Warlocks,' welcomes Cmdr. Buser as the next commanding officer of the Navy's elite airborne laboratory squadron.
October 24, 2014
Dr. Siddiq Qidwai, a mechanical engineer at NRL, has been elected a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
November 12, 2014
Each year the editors of Popular Science review thousands of products in search of the top 100 tech innovations of the year. This year, Popular Science Magazine has named NRL's novel, seawater-to-fuel concept, as one of the magazine's top 100 breakthrough products and technologies of 2014.
November 21, 2014
Dr. Kazhikathra Kailasanath, a physicist at NRL, receives the Captain Robert Dexter Conrad Award. He is recognized for "leading and conducting the basic research and the necessary applied engineering studies that have demonstrated the use of simple mechanical chevrons on jet exhaust nozzles as an effective noise-reducing retrofit for Navy F/A-18 Jet Aircraft Engines and that have demonstrated a Pulsed Detonation combustor retrofit for shipboard gas turbine engines with a 25% reduction in fuel consumption with no loss in generated power."
December 1, 2014
Dr. Gurudas Ganguli, Senior Scientist for Intense Charged Particle Beams and Plasma Processes at NRL, has received the 2014 E.O. Hulburt Award. This is the highest award the NRL Commanding Officer can confer on an NRL civilian employee.
December 9, 2014
NRL plasma physicist, Dr. Alexander Velikovich, is the 2014 recipient of the laboratory's Edison Sigma Xi Award for Pure Science.
December 11, 2014
Dr. Sam Carter, a research physicist at NRL, has received the Young Investigator Award from the NRL Edison Chapter of the Sigma Xi scientific research society.
December 16, 2014
On October 9, 2014, Dr. Jay Eversole was awarded the 2014 U.S. Naval Research Laboratory-Edison Sigma Xi Applied Science Award. The citation reads, "In recognition of his research in aerosol optical diagnostic measurements, sensor development, and leadership contributions to DoD [Department of Defense] chemical and biological warfare defense."
December 17, 2014
The 2014 conference concentrated on science and technology of the new Arctic environment, bringing together leading researchers in Arctic environmental science.
December 18, 2014
NRL's Dr. Fritz Kub has been inducted into the University of Maryland's Innovation Hall of Fame. He is recognized for his technology innovations related to gallium nitride Light Emitting Diodes and microwave transistors.