For the past two weeks, a group of volunteers at Pantex has been collecting donations for the Snack Pak 4 Kids program, gathering an impressive amount of food for needy children.

Pantexans donated more than $1,000 to the effort, as well as a variety of food items, which were placed in barrels located throughout the plant.

Snack Pak 4 Kids is an Amarillo-based charity started in 2010 to provide backpacks with snacks in them for children to take home for the weekend. The program is designed to provide food to hungry children when they are away from school and unable to access a reliable source of sustenance. The program serves more than 4,000 students in 24 school districts in the Texas Panhandle.

The volunteers this week delivered 5,000 Pop Tarts, 82 jars of peanut butter, as well as other snacks and money donated by Pantexans.

About the photo: A Snack Pak 4 Kids volunteer, left, helps Dale Philyaw unload food donated by Pantexans.

Pantex collects food for kids

May 16, 2014 at 1:00 pm

Catalyst, a first-of-a-kind supercomputer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, is available to industry collaborators to test big data technologies, architectures and applications.

Developed by a partnership of Cray, Intel and Lawrence Livermore, this Cray CS300 high performance computing cluster is available for collaborative projects with industry through Livermore's High Performance Computing Innovation Center.

The supercomputer is a resource for NNSA’s Advanced Simulation and Computing program and will provide a common user environment across NNSA’s national labs.

Read more.

About the photo: The Catalyst supercomputer at Lawrence Livermore employs a Cray CS300 architecture modified specifically for data-intensive computing. The system is now available for collaborative research with industry and academia.

Catalyst supercomputer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

May 16, 2014 at 12:00 pm

To highlight the successful completion of the major goals of the 1993 HEU Purchase Agreement, Greg Dwyer, Director of the U.S.-Russia HEU Transparency Program within NNSA’s Office of Nonproliferation and International Security, recently spoke at a side event at the United Nations in New York City. The event, which took place under the auspices of the Preparatory Committee for the 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, included delegates, nongovernmental organizations and other attendees. It was moderated by Mr. Adam Scheinman, Senior Advisor for Nuclear Nonproliferation in the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation at the Department of State, and included a presentation by Mr. Vladimir Kuchinov, Senior Advisor to the Director General of the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation, “Rosatom.”

Dwyer’s presentation focused on the transparency monitoring and technical aspects of the 1993 Agreement, how monitoring was conducted in Russian nuclear facilities and the results after twenty years. Kuchinov’s presentation focused on the history of the 1993 Agreement and its commercial success.

NNSA’s full presentation slides are available here.

About the photo: (left to right) Vladimir Kuchinov, Senior Advisor to the Rosatom General Director, Adam Scheinman, Senior Advisor for Nuclear Nonproliferation in the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation at the U.S. Department of State, and Greg Dwyer, Director of NNSA’s HEU Transparency Program, discuss the successfully completed 1993 U.S.-Russia HEU Purchase Agreement.

NNSA highlights ‘swords to ploughshares’ efforts

NNSA highlights ‘swords to ploughshares’ efforts

May 15, 2014 at 3:00 pm

Anne Harrington, NNSA Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, visited the Kansas City Plant recently for a facility tour of the new National Security Campus and to receive project briefings on its proliferation deterrence programs.

During the visit, Harrington toured the Analytical Sciences Lab, one of the most complete and diverse labs under one roof. The lab provides analysis such as metallurgical diagnostics, mechanical/physical testing, environmental testing, and analytical chemistry to test a product under any condition and understand the conditions for product failure.

Anne Harrington tours new National Security Campus

Anne Harrington tours new National Security Campus

May 14, 2014 at 9:00 am

Sandia National Laboratories recently completed the renovation of five large-scale test facilities that are crucial to ensuring the safety and reliability of the nation’s nuclear weapons systems. The work supports Sandia’s ongoing nuclear stockpile modernization work on the B61-12 and W88 Alt, assessments of current stockpile systems, and test and analysis for broad national security customers.

The renovation of two additional facilities was completed in 2005 during the first phase of the project. The two-phase, $100 million project, which was completed ahead of schedule and under budget, renovated Sandia’s major environmental test facilities.

Read more. 

About the photo: Sandia recently completed the renovation of five large-scale test facilities, including this Centrifuge, which are critical to Sandia’s stockpile stewardship and national security work.

Sandia completes major overhaul of key nuclear weapons test facilities

May 13, 2014 at 2:00 pm

More than 85 employees from the Savannah River Site M&O contractor Savannah River Nuclear Solutions, LLC (SRNS) volunteered to work on their day off at six United Way agencies located throughout the greater Augusta, Ga., area as part of this year’s Project SERVE.

Dan Armstrong of SRNS said most of the United Way agencies supported by this effort have limited budgets to support programs and even smaller amounts of funding dedicated to lawn care and building maintenance.

Tasks typical of Project SERVE include clearing debris, painting, repairing flooring, putting up dry wall, building wheel chair ramps, installing smoke detectors, fixing faulty plumbing and yard work. Other 2014 Project SERVE teams worked at locations including the Easter Seals facility, Kroc Center, Heritage Academy and Senior Citizens Center Council. 

About the photo: Employees of SRS M&O contractor Savannah River Nuclear Solutions help spruce up Heritage Academy in Augusta, Ga.

SRS employees spend a day off working for the community

May 13, 2014 at 10:00 am

From liquid nitrogen to the 3D simulation room, students were immersed in hands-on science fun at this year’s Take Your Child To Work Day at the Kansas City Plant. 

“We are proud of the work we do, and we welcome any opportunity to share the story of our mission.” said Mark Holecek, Kansas City Field Office Manager. “As a parent, I think it is even more important that we share our scientific and technical knowledge, and our pride in what we do with the people who matter most in our lives – our kids.”

Middle school students combined corn starch and water to make Oobleck, a non-newtonian fluid, which acts like both a liquid and a solid; ate grapes frozen with liquid nitrogen; and generated hair-raising electricity with the Van de Graaff machine.

The high school students got a detailed view of the B-61 trainer and explored next generation engineering techniques such as 3D printing and 3D simulations. Students also had the opportunity to learn how KCP is advancing the state of manufacturing with Molecular Dynamics and Physics-Based simulations at the National Security Campus.

KCP shows off the fun side of science

KCP shows off the fun side of science

May 9, 2014 at 3:00 pm

NNSA employees and their friends and families beat the rain delay and enjoyed the annual NNSA Day at the Ball Park this week. The Nationals played The Los Angeles Dodgers.

More photos available here.

NNSA Day at the Park

May 9, 2014 at 12:00 pm

Gen. Frank Klotz, Under Secretary for Nuclear Security and NNSA Administrator, earlier this week toured the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) and met with employees. During the tour, Gen. Klotz visited the Device Assembly Facility (DAF), which offers one of the safest, most secure locations anywhere in the U.S. weapons complex to conduct nuclear explosive operations. Scientists at DAF work on special nuclear material, radiation test objects, and high-explosives in support of experiments for Stockpile Stewardship and other programs.

Klotz also toured the U1a Complex which is an underground laboratory used for subcritical experiments and physics experiments that obtain technical information about the nation’s nuclear weapons stockpile. These experiments support NNSA’s Stockpile Stewardship Programs, created to maintain the safety and effectiveness of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile.

Read more about NNSS here. More photos of the visit are available here.

Below, Klotz listens to a briefing 960 feet underground in the U1a complex at the Nevada National Security Complex.  Leading the briefing are (left to right): Stuart Rawlinson, facility manager for the U1a complex, and Raffi Papazian, director of Defense Experimentation and Stockpile Stewardship, both from National Security Technologies.

Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz tours NNSS

May 8, 2014 at 4:00 pm

Admiral Cecil Haney, Commander, USSTRATCOM, visited Pantex Tuesday to tour various facilities and conduct an all-hands meeting with Pantex workers. Haney thanked Pantexans for the work they perform to help maintain a credible nuclear deterrent, thus ensuring the safety of the United States.

Haney briefed Pantexans about the responsibilities and capabilities of USSTRATCOM and discussed how the work done at Pantex factors into that mission. Haney said as the number of weapons in the U.S. stockpile decreases, the work done at Pantex to ensure the safety and reliability of each nuclear weapon becomes even more important.

Haney told Pantexans that although they do not wear a military uniform, the work they do to protect America is as crucial as the work done by those who do.

Admiral Haney visits Pantex

Admiral Haney visits Pantex

Admiral Haney visits Pantex

May 7, 2014 at 3:00 pm