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Brookhaven Lab's Inventors Honored

inventors honored

While Brookhaven National Lab is renowned around the world for the seven Nobel Prizes awarded for work performed here, the Lab is also home to dozens of other innovators who have produced technologies, that they have patented and hope to bring to the marketplace. On Dec. 17, the Lab acknowledged the achievements of inventors whose work has resulted in issued patents in Fiscal Year 2014 or whose work has been the basis for licenses to industry.

Brookhaven received 21 issued patents in FY14. These patents are breakthroughs in all areas of science and include each of the Lab’s directorates. Laboratory Director Doon Gibbs and Associate Lab Director (ALD) for Environment, Biology, Nuclear Science & Nonproliferation Martin Schoonen, ALD for Photon Sciences Steve Dierker, ALD for Nuclear & Particle Physics Berndt Mueller, and Interim ALD for Basic Energy Sciences John Hill participated in honoring some of the many innovators who work here.

The celebration also highlighted some of the inventions that are now commercialized, including life science breakthroughs in growth media technology and the T7 phage display system. In the physical sciences, technologies that have been commercialized include an aerosol analyzer, platinum-coated palladium nanoparticles, and three distinct kinds of fluorometers. Eleven teaching kits sold as products were also copyrighted.

To learn more about Technology Commercialization at the Lab visit:

2015-5490  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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3D Printing in High Demand

Leo Reffi

Leo Reffi stands in front of the 3D printer in Building 743

It looks like a coffee dispenser. But the nondescript grey box tucked against a wall in Building 743 is actually a 3D printer. It’s in high demand by scientists and engineers building beamlines for Brookhaven Lab’s National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II). 

“They use it to test their ideas before committing to final designs,” said mechanical designer Leo Reffi, who controls the print jobs.

A 3D printer makes solid objects from digital designs. You choose the design, send it to the printer, and click on the “make” button. The machine heats up a slender filament of material until it melts, then puts down very thin layers in the shape of the object. The process is additive – the printer deposits material layer upon layer to build up the object. This can take hours or days depending on the size and complexity of the object.

While Brookhaven’s industrial setting requires these printers – the Instrumentation Division uses them for work on the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope and Central Fabrication Services has one – the Lab’s Science Learning Center is using 3D printers for a course with teachers and students (see below) to remain on the cutting edge of technology.

Full story:

2015-5491  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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Keeping Student Programs on the Cutting Edge

process chamber of a 3D printer

Students and teacher peer into the process chamber of a 3D printer

Brookhaven Lab’s Office of Education Programs (OEP) purchased three 3D printers last year because “We wanted to remain on the cutting edge for our student programs, and 3D printers connect nicely to science at the Lab,” said Bernadette Uzzi, supervisor of kindergarten through grade 12 programs. “Schools are beginning to look at these printers for technology classes.”

She added that engineering is a core element of the Next Generation Science Standards developed by the National Research Council in partnership with science and educational organizations.

During OEP’s summer workshops, students designed magnetically levitated cars, made them in a 3D printer, and tested their designs. During an engineering program, Boy Scouts created neckerchief slides, key chains, tent stakes, and sporks. At Sci-Ed 2014, a professional development day for teachers, one workshop was dedicated to 3D printing. Uzzi quoted a satisfied teacher: “Getting to use the technology really made it seem more accessible and easy to incorporate it into my classroom.”

To learn more about the Lab’s Education Programs visit:

2015-5492  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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*The events above are free and open to the public. Visitors 16 and older must bring a photo ID for access to Brookhaven Lab events.

2015-5493  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office