OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LABORATORY
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is one of three Department of Energy (DOE) installations on the 33,725-acre DOE Oak Ridge Reservation in Eastern Tennessee in Anderson and Roane counties. The Oak Ridge facilities include the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL); the Y-12 National Security Complex; and the East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP). ORNL activities occupy 22,606 acres (58 square miles), of which 13,590 are designated as the National Environmental Research Park. ORNL activities use approximately 1,153 acres of developed land. ORNL also has responsibility for approximately 1,500 acres of land and a number of unused farm structures on the Freels Bend Peninsula and Solway Bend of Melton Hill Lake.
ORNL is the DOE's largest science and energy laboratory. It has approximately 4,200 staff (about 1,500 scientists and engineers) and hosts 3,000 guest researchers annually. It includes 20 user facilities. ORNL's budget exceeds $1.2 billion. 75% of its budget comes from DOE, with the other 25% from work for others. It is a multi-program science and technology laboratory for basic and applied research and development in energy, neutron science, high-performance computing, complex biological systems, materials research at the nanoscale, and national security. ORNL is also involved in isotope production, information management, and technical program management for DOE.
In 1942, operations commenced at the Oak Ridge facilities in support of the Manhattan Project. As a DOE multiprogram laboratory, ORNL conducts basic and applied research and development to advance the nation's energy resources, environmental quality, scientific knowledge, educational foundations, and industrial competitiveness. Activities at ORNL are managed by the DOE Oak Ridge Office (ORO), formerly the Oak Ridge Field Office and Oak Ridge Operations Office. As of November 1, 1996, there were 664 U.S. DOE employees assigned to Oak Ridge Operations Office (OR), 50 of whom are located at ORNL. ORNL accommodated nearly 2,000 additional people, including temporary and part-time employees, members of the contractor's central organization, DOE employees, and visitors, in addition to the normal complement of contractor employees.
ORO is responsible for major Department of Energy (DOE) programs in science, environmental management, nuclear fuel supply, and national security activities managed by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). The FY 2008 budget request for DOE programs in Oak Ridge was $2.9 billion. 12% of the overall DOE budget is directed to Oak Ridge. ORO has approximately 13,000 employees. DOE offices with interest in ORNL are the Office of Science, the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, the Office of Environmental Management, the Office of Defense Programs, the Office of Nuclear Energy, Science and Technology, the Office of Environment, Safety and Health, and the Office of Fossil Energy.
ORNL was managed by Lockheed Martin Energy Research Corporation (LMER), a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation. On July 1, 1995, ORNL contract modifications were made to convert ORNL to a fixed fee contract arrangement. On August 6, 1996, DOE announced a decision to compete the Office of Environmental Management (EM), Office of Defense Programs (DP), and ORNL contracts. The contract was set to expires on March 31, 1998, but was extended for two years to 2000.
UT-Battelle, LLC took over management of ORNL in April 2000. The group is a non-profit organization created in collaboration by the University of Tennessee and Battelle, an R&D firm. UT-Battelle was formed at the behest of the Department of Energy for the sole purpose of managing ORNL. The $2.5 billion dollar contract was set to expire in March 2005. On April 22nd, 2003 the DOE informed UT-Battelle of its intention to extend the contract with the firm, but no commitments were made. On December 1, 2005, DOE awarded a five-year, $6.3 billion extension to the UT-Battelle, LLC management and operating contract.
ORNL hosts the U.S. project office for the ITER international fusion experiment and the Office of Science-sponsored Bioenergy Science Center. ORNL recently completed construction of the $1.4 billion Spallation Neutron Source. ORNL also upgraded its High Flux Isotope Reactor. ORNL is finishing a $350 million project create a campus of 13 new facilities, including the Laboratory for Comparative and Functional Genomics, the Center for Nanophase Materials, Sciences, the Advanced Microscopy Laboratory, the Office of Science's Leadership Computing Facility, and joint institutes for computational sciences, biological sciences, and neutron sciences.
As of 2007, ORNL is home to the world's most intense pulsed neutron source. Also, ORNL's Cray XT4 Jaguar supercomputer ranked second on the Top500 list of the world's fastest computers. The Joint Institute for Biological Sciences on West Campus was scheduled to be operational in Fall 2007. Construction of a new User Housing Facility on Chestnut Ridge is slated to start in 2008. The design for a Joint Institute for Neutron Sciences, which is also to be on Chestnut Ridge, is out for bid.
ORNL is working on multiple projects. It is planning to replace the laboratories in Building 4500 in its Science Laboratory Infrastructure (SLI) reconfiguration project. Its Integrated Facilities Disposition Project will cleanup the Central Campus area. It is also building the Oak Ridge Science and Technology Park. The technology park will be located on the northwest quadrant of Central Campus. In 2006 the property was transferred to Community Reuse Organization of East Tennessee (CROET), which will manage the technology park. It is intended for research and development facilities, high-technology and science-based companies, engineering support services, technology commercialization incubation space, and prototype manufacturing facilities. Site preparation began for phase one on December 3, 2007, with construction scheduled to begin in early 2008.
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