Articles written by Jacob Berkowitz

About the Author

Jacob Berkowitz is a science writer and author. His latest book is The Stardust Revolution: The New Story of Our Origin in the Stars.

October 2014

Making hydrogen

October 8th, 2014 Updated: October 8th, 2014

On the roads around the Bay Area in 2015, there’s a good chance Brandon Wood will spot one of the first commercially available hydrogen-powered passenger vehicles: Toyota’s 2015 FC (fuel cell) car. The Toyota’s fuel cells will electrochemically combine hydrogen with oxygen to generate electricity, producing water as the only chemical emission. However, drivers will […]


Liquid water molecules binding to a surface a promising photoactive system, called InP, for generating hydrogen using sunlight and water.

Back to the hydrogen future

October 8th, 2014 Updated: October 8th, 2014

At Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Computational Science Graduate Fellowship alum Brandon Wood applies the world’s most sophisticated molecular dynamics codes on America’s leading supercomputers to model hydrogen’s reaction kinetics.


January 2013

A sequence of false color images generated from a numerical simulation show a MagLIF liner as it is heated by a laser in preparation for an implosion.

Sun on Earth

January 24th, 2013 Updated: January 24th, 2013

Simulations at Sandia National Laboratories reveal that using magnetism to heat and insulate fusion fuel could recreate solar conditions in the lab.


Putting Big Squeeze Fusion to the Test

January 22nd, 2013 Updated: January 22nd, 2013

A new Sandia National Laboratories-based approach to fusion that’s shown promise in computational simulations has passed its first bricks-and-mortar experimental test. MagLIF (Magnetized Liner Inertial Fusion) envisions using Sandia’s Z machine as a massive magnetic vise to implode, and thus heat, a tiny cylinder full of deuterium to Sun-like temperatures, igniting a fusion reaction. “I […]


June 2012

Time evolution of the primary convective activity (white) and lightning (red dots) for Hurricane Rita. (Image: Jon Reisner, Los Alamos National Laboratory.)

Enlightening predictions

June 6th, 2012 Updated: June 7th, 2012

Computer simulations of hurricane lightning could be the key to predicting and avoiding the storms’ real-world punch.


December 2011


Seeing beyond 3-D

December 28th, 2011 Updated: January 20th, 2012

High-dimensional visualization techniques at Stony Brook and Brookhaven are helping reveal the interactions that drive climate and other complexities.


Mining for aerosols and other particles

December 28th, 2011 Updated: December 28th, 2011

Klaus Mueller’s latest n-dimensional visualization work capitalizes on a decade-long collaboration with Department of Energy atmospheric chemist Alla Zelenyuk, work aimed at seeing the proverbial forest amidst trees of data. At DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Zelenyuk specializes in using single-particle mass spectrometry to analyze the real-time transformations of nanoparticles. This includes atmospheric particles, such […]