What happens when leaves go from sink to source?

As photosynthesis rates rise, leaves ultimately become net nutrient sources, supplying carbohydrates to the remainder of the plant. This sink-to-source transition is likely to have profound effects on mineral distribution, sequestration, and compartmentalization of essential elements in plants. But determining these effects is challenging due to the difficulty in measuring such distributions over large areas, such as a whole leaf or plant.


Xraise STEPS up their STEM internships

Cornell University’s first STEP grant opened on July 1, 2015 and provides opportunities for 99 student participants in grades 7-12 to succeed in pre-college performance and ultimately in their science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) higher education pursuits. STEP serves economically disadvantaged and underrepresented minority students in the Ithaca City School District, specifically DeWitt Middle School, Boynton Middle School and Ithaca High School.


Vanadium Kβ X-ray emission spectroscopy detects changes in valence electronic structure and bonding

Hard X-rays like those available at CHESS can provide an element-specific probe of geometric and electronic structure at or around an absorbing atom. Also, their lower attenuation at ambient pressure, compared to soft X-rays, makes them ideally suited to the study of molecules and materials in situ.

Summer research undergraduates bring science to the community

In addition to the research they are doing in our laboratory, each of these summer interns is giving six hours of their time to science in the community organized through our outreach program, Xraise. This arrangement allows the undergraduates an opportunity to hone their skills of public communication and interpersonal skills, while pushing them to articulate difficult concepts in an easily digestible way.


Secrets of membrane formation revealed

In the SNIPS method a block copolymer film is coated onto a substrate, left to evaporate for a magic time period, and then plunged into water. Graduate students Yibei Gu and Rachel Dorin of the Wiesner group at the Cornell Department of Materials Science and Engineering set out to investigate what happens during the evaporation period in the top surface separation layer. They used an in-situ doctor blade coater developed by CHESS staff scientist Detlef Smilgies to study the membrane formation in real time at CHESS D1 station. Their results were recently published in Macromolecules [1].

Particle physics detector makes way for upgrade

The migration of this 26-ton superconducting magnet marks the last major component to be removed from the detector as the lab prepares for its next major upgrade, CHESS-U. After months of disassembly of the structural steel, iron rings, calorimeter and interleaved muon chambers, the CLEO solenoid will soon be transported to its new home at Jefferson Lab in Virginia, where it will come out of retirement for a whole new set of experiments.