Oct. 18, 2010
The Noise About Graphene Nanoribbons
Yuegang Zhang and colleagues at the Molecular Foundry are studying the ‘noise’ in graphene nanoribbons — one-dimensional strips of graphene with nanometer-scale widths. By measuring the conductance fluctuation, or ‘noise’ of electrons in graphene nanoribbons, the researchers directly probed the effect of quantum confinement in these structures. Their findings can be applied to a wide array of nanoscale materials, including graphene-based logic switching devices, which could be the basis for future high-speed computer chips. More>
People: Keasling to Serve as Associate Lab Director for Biosciences
As announced on Friday, Jay Keasling, Chief Executive Officer of the Department of Energy's Joint BioEnergy Institute and former Acting Deputy Lab Director, has been approved by the Regents of the University of California to serve as Associate Lab Director for Biosciences, effective immediately. Keasling is one of the top synthetic biologists in the world and a member of the National Academy of Engineering. A professor of chemical engineering at UC Berkeley, Keasling's work in anti-malarial drugs and his leadership in biofuels research is globally recognized. Keasling is also a strong advocate of safe work practices, and has proven himself to be an exemplary leader at the Laboratory.
HR Benefits: Share Feedback on Proposed Retirement Benefit Changes at Wednesday Meeting in Bldg. 50 Auditorium
Employees who want to learn more about the proposed changes to the University of California’s post-employment benefits are invited to attend a meeting on Wednesday from 10 a.m. to noon in the Building 50 Auditorium. This is an opportunity for staff to provide feedback prior to the UC Regents meeting in November, at which these changes will be discussed. The gathering will be facilitated by UC’s Randy Scott and Peter Taylor, and Berkeley Lab’s David Wiedrick, manager for compensation and benefits. While the meeting will be webcast, staff will only be able to provide feedback at the live event. More>
Special Event: Benefit Celebrates Launch of Bill Nye Climate Exhibit
Lab staff are invited to attend a Chabot Space and Science Center gala benefit celebrating the opening of “Global Cool,” Bill Nye’s Climate Lab. The event takes place Saturday evening, Nov. 13. The Climate Lab features air, water, and land galleries exploring how climate change affects Earth’s interconnected systems, and how to use the sun, wind, land, and water to generate clean energy. Two Bill Nye laboratories will feature innovative technology and design in transportation and the built environment. More>
HR Benefits: Deadlines for Changes to 403(b) and 457(b) Deductions
With the final few pay dates for 2010 approaching, now is the time to consider changes to your pre-tax contributions to the UC Retirement Savings Program’s 403(b) and 457(b) plans for this calendar (taxable) year. For employees paid monthly, the deadline is Oct. 29 for the 457(b) plan and Nov. 16 for the 403(b) plan. For bi-weekly paid employees, the deadline is Oct. 29 for the 457(b) plan and Dec. 9 for the 403(b) plan.
The maximum annual contribution for each plan is $16,500, or $22,000 if you are age 50 by Dec. 31. Contact Fidelity Retirement Services (866-682-7787) to make changes.
EH&S: Smokers Reminded to Comply With Lab Policy
To diminish fire and health hazards, employees who smoke are reminded to adhere to the Lab’s policy on smoking. Smoking is only permitted outdoors on areas paved with asphalt, brick or concrete, and at least 20 feet away from building entrances, operable windows and air intakes. No smoking is allowed in Lab vehicles, on decks or stairs, in areas with vegetation, or any areas posted as "No Smoking." Smokers are responsible for the safe disposal of their cigarettes and should use ash cans to make sure materials are properly extinguished. Request ash cans by calling x6274. Go here to view the full policy.
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