Reaching President Obama’s goal of a world without nuclear weapons requires overcoming technical challenges in verifying that disarmament has occurred. For more than a decade, the U.S. and U.K. have been working together to improve technical verification—an endeavor that balances the need to protect classified and sensitive information with the need to obtain enough data to inform the process.
Michele Smith, Deputy Director for the Warhead Dismantlement Transparency Program within NNSA’s Office of Nonproliferation and International Security, recently shared technical verification lessons learned by the U.S. and U.K. She was joined by Mark Ruglys of the British Embassy to the United States. The presentation took place at a side event in conjunction with meetings of the UN General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security.
Smith and Ruglys specifically focused on the experience the two countries gained through a year-long monitored dismantlement exercise designed to test existing methodologies and identify areas where further development is needed. To be as realistic as possible, the exercise was performed in an operational nuclear facility with representative quantities of fissile material and simulated high explosives.
The full presentation (approximately 30 minutes, including Q&A) was webcast and currently is available at http://webtv.un.org/watch/technical-challenges-in-verifying-nuclear-disarmament/2769294424001/.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, in partnership with Intel and Cray, has announced a unique high performance computing (HPC) cluster that will serve research scientists at all three institutions and provide a proving ground for new HPC and Big Data technologies and architectures.
The Catalyst resource, a Cray(R) CS300(TM) cluster supercomputer, will be shared between the three partners with access rights based on level of investment. System access will be managed through LLNL's High Performance Computing Innovation Center (HPCIC), whose mission is to work with industrial partners in the development of computing solutions for the U.S. to compete effectively in the 21st century global economy.
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Catalyst is a unique high performance computing (HPC) cluster that will serve research scientists and provide a proving ground for new HPC and Big Data technologies and architectures. It was recently installed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
Safety engineer Sonya Patton is a familiar sight around the Savannah River Tritium Enterprise (SRTE) facilities. Her hands-on approach to safety leadership keeps her out and about in the facilities, watching and guiding personnel toward safety excellence.
That approach produces results: As of this writing, SRTE has surpassed 4.4 million hours without an injury resulting in time away from work, and Sonya has been named the Safety Professional of the Year by the Augusta Chapter of the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE).
The award recognizes her expertise, her contributions to the safety profession, and her leadership in establishing, maintaining, and improving safety programs. She has served as a safety professional at the Savannah River Site since 1990, with another 10 years’ experience in the commercial nuclear industry prior to that. She is an active member and past president of the ASSE.
The ASSE, founded in 1911, is the nation’s oldest and largest professional safety organization. Its more than 32,000 members manage, supervise and consult on safety, health, and environmental issues in industry, insurance, government, and education.The Augusta Chapter, formed in 1983, has membership from 19 counties in Georgia and South Carolina.
Pantex process engineer Savannah Gates recently talked to Amarillo high school students about engineering at the Top of Texas Career Expo. Gates used a variety of puzzles to teach engineering principles to students who might be interested in the field. Pantex professionals from specialties such as IT, engineering, and security supported the career fair, educating more than 900 juniors and seniors about career options at Pantex.
Department of Energy has removed all remaining highly enriched uranium from Hungary. Check out the links below to see videos and additional photos of the operation, which was successfully completed by NNSA's Global Threat Reduction Initiative.
Aerial Measurement System personnel from Remote Sensing Laboratory (RSL) in Las Vegas, Nevada, this week conducted outreach at the annual CBRNe World Conference in San Diego, Calif. They were joined by representatives from the Region 7 Radiological Assistance Program from Livermore National Laboratory. It includes representatives from more than 20 countries.
Over the last 50 years, scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's Biosciences and Biotechnology Division have been instrumental researchers on the Human Genome Project, developing high-tech devices to sort cells and analyze DNA and providing the science for federal programs to defend the nation from biological weapons.
Livermore has compiled a complete list of their biosciences contributions. See more.
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In the 1970s, the Laboratory established preeminence in cytometric research. Livermore was the first to use flow cytometry to sort chromosomes.
The most recent NNSA quarterly summary of experiments conducted as part of its science-based stockpile stewardship program is now available here.
The quarterly summary prepared by NNSA’s Office of Defense Programs provides descriptions of key NNSA facilities that conduct stockpile stewardship experiments. These include some of the most sophisticated scientific research facilities in the world including, the Dual Axis Radiographic Hydrodynamic Test (DARHT) facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory, National Ignition Facility (NIF) at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and the Z machine at Sandia National Laboratories. The summary also provides the number of experiments performed at each facility during each quarter of the fiscal year.
The U.S. Stockpile Stewardship Program is a robust program of scientific inquiry used to sustain and assess the nuclear weapons stockpile without the use of underground nuclear tests. The experiments carried out within the program are used in combination with complex computational models and NNSA’s Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) Program to assess the safety, security and effectiveness of the stockpile. An extraordinary set of science, technology and engineering (ST&E) facilities have been established in support of the stockpile stewardship program.
Savannah River Tritium Enterprise (SRTE) went above and beyond its FY13 productivity savings goals. Overall, SRTE’s validated productivity savings totaled $2.605 million, which represents more than 116 percent of the goal. Performance against other Continuous Improvement goals was impressive as well, with 20 percent of employees engaged in a Continuous Improvement (CI) action each month and each division initiating at least one Lean Event per month.
Among the 28 CI projects validated in FY13 were:
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P.K. Hightower of SRTE Quality & Performance Excellence presents to Joe Shake of SRTE Engineering a shirt in recognition of his contributions to SRTE's productivity savings.
The National Security Campus design team has been named a global winner of the “Design is…" award program which honors architecture and design firms that are changing the very idea of design.
It’s been less than a year since the building’s completion and Kansas City-based architectural firm, HNTB Inc., has already won three industry awards for their interior design elements. HNTB was tasked with designing a work space that was energizing, reflected our mission, and created a crisp, clean and bright place to work.
The customer focus areas, such as the main meeting center and entries to every pod use either the full hexagon for a literal effect or a fractured, manipulated design of the shape.
The floors of the building are on the raised access floor that allows a more efficient distribution of data, power and HVAC ventilation. This design element was intentionally left as unfinished concrete not only to be a good steward of the budget but to give employees the sense they were seeing the inner workings of the structure. The slanted ceilings in the open office areas, based on the geometric shape tetrahedron, was a mechanism to visually shorten a space equal in length to a football field while creating visual interest. Between the ceiling tile “clouds,” the structure is visible, revealing the tectonic structure of the building.
See the video.