NNSA Marks Two-Year Anniversary of Sandia's MESA Complex

Press Release
Aug 21, 2009

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today marked the two-year anniversary of the Microsystems and Engineering Sciences Applications (MESA) complex at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, N.M., by launching a new multimedia gallery highlighting MESA and its work.  The gallery, which features a photo slideshow and videos, is available here.

The $518 million MESA project, the largest in Sandia history, was formally dedicated on Aug. 23, 2007, and was completed in eight years — three years ahead of schedule — and $50 million under budget.

"The MESA complex is a shining example of the responsible stewardship of taxpayer dollars that has resulted in a facility that is critical to our nuclear security mission," said NNSA Administrator Thomas D'Agostino. "The work accomplished at MESA ensures that our nuclear weapons stockpile is safe, secure and reliable. We look forward to having MESA continue its vital role in advancing technology and engineering to meet NNSA needs."

Sandia has the primary role of developing and designing the electronic systems that operate nuclear warheads. A key component of those systems are radiation hardened microelectronics, devices that are designed, qualified, and fabricated in Sandia's MESA facilities.

 "MESA represents Sandia's commitment to NNSA's core nuclear and national security mission. MESA is also the hub of Sandia's Innovation Corridor and is a model that stirs competitiveness," said Sandia President and Laboratories Director Tom Hunter. "MESA's technological achievements also help us attract the next generation of scientists and engineers, American universities, and industry partners interested in the creativity, innovation and collaboration opportunities available to continue developing effective, safe and efficient national security solutions."

The 400,000-square-foot complex combines the most advanced design and simulation tools and the most advanced microsystems and nanotechnologies to meet NNSA mission requirements. The complex consists of three discrete buildings: the Microelectronics Development Laboratory and MicroFab, the Microsystems Laboratory, and the Weapons Integration Facility.

The MESA Complex is also part of Sandia's Innovation Corridor and the Sandia Science & Technology Park. Included in the Innovation Corridor are the Red Storm HPC Facility, Joint Computation and Engineering Lab (JCEL), Computational Science Research Institute (CSRI) and the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (CINT).

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Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science in the nation's national security enterprise. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability, and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; reduces the global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad.

Media contact(s):
NNSA Public Affairs (202) 586-7371