Los Alamos National Laboratory

  • Lab forms cost-cutting task force

    Last week, lab director Charlie McMillan established the Los Alamos National Laboratory Integrated Stewardship Council, which would help make financial decisions in order to achieve $200 million in savings across the lab.

    In a memo obtained by the Los Alamos Monitor, Rich Marquez, who reports to McMillan as part of the senior management team at the lab, wrote that “Organizations have been asked to execute only those employment and procurement actions that are essential.  In addition, they have been asked to implement a 20 percent cost savings (from FY11 levels) in foreign and domestic travel and in M&S expenditures.

  • Seven laboratory scientists honored

    The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has awarded the distinction of Fellow to seven scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory for advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished. New Fellows will be recognized in February at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2012 AAAS Annual Meeting in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

  • LANL holiday drive a hit

    More than 1,100 children and seniors will have more gifts under their tree this year because of a holiday gift drive at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

    The lab’s annual holiday drive came to a close Wednesday with 1,130 gifts, including 35 bicycles of all colors and sizes being delivered to agencies partnering with LANL.

    “More than 1,000 children and seniors from around Northern New Mexico will have a brighter holiday because LANL employees enthusiastically participated in the holiday gift tag program,” said Tim Martinez of LANL’s Community Programs Office. “I’m so proud to be part of such a worthwhile program.”

  • Small businesses in spotlight

    The National Nuclear Security Administration today announced that it distributed more than $362 million in small business obligations for federal prime contracts in fiscal year 2011. NNSA surpassed its departmental small business goal by 27 percent for the year.

    To highlight the success of its small business program, NNSA today launched the third annual “NNSA Small Business Week.” NNSA will feature a different small business of the day throughout the week.

    “We continue to develop strong partnerships with small businesses while being stewards of taxpayers’ money,” said NNSA Administrator Thomas D’Agostino.

  • LANL employees make record number of pledges

    Los Alamos National Laboratory employees have pledged a record $1.81 million to United Way and other eligible nonprofit programs. Los Alamos National Security, LLC, which manages and operates the laboratory for the National Nuclear Security Administration, plans to prorate its $1 million match among the selected nonprofit organizations, bringing the total donation to $2.81 million.

    “Our Los Alamos employees can take pride in this accomplishment,” said Carolyn Zerkle, LANL’s associate director for Information Technology and this year’s campaign champion. “The LANL team raised $1.81 million, which surpassed last year’s total of $1.5 million by more than 20 percent.”

  • Questions swirl around $6 billion nuclear lab

    SANTA FE (AP) — At Los Alamos National Laboratory, scientists and engineers refer to their planned new $6 billion nuclear lab by its clunky acronym, CMRR, short for Chemistry Metallurgy Research Replacement Facility. But as a work in progress for three decades and with hundreds of millions of dollars already spent, nomenclature is among the minor issues.

    Questions continue to swirl about exactly what kind of nuclear and plutonium research will be done there, whether the lab is really necessary, and — perhaps most important — will it be safe, or could it become New Mexico’s equivalent of Japan’s Fukushima?

  • Citizens speak out on NNSA's waste facility

    This week, the National Nuclear Security Administration Los Alamos Site Office dotted its Is and crossed its Ts as it sent a 386-page Class 2 permit modification request for the addition of a new Transuranic Waste Facility at Technical Area 63 to the New Mexico Environment Department.

    In addition, the LASO office sent a 1,074-page document to the NMED, concerning a Class 3 permit modification request for the addition of open detonation units at TA-36 and TA-39.

    There were no public comments associated with the open detonation permit modification request.

    But that certainly was not the case with the Transuranic Waste Facility, with 30 different emails accompanying the request, all of them against LANL’s plans for the new facility.

  • LANL storm water permit meeting cancelled

    The public meeting scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday to review the individual permit for storm water initiated by Los Alamos National Laboratory has been cancelled due to icy road conditions, snow, and extreme temperatures that have gripped the area for the past few days.

    The meeting, which was set to take place at Cities of Gold Conference Center, will be rescheduled for a later date, according to lab officials.

  • LANL, LAPS announce closure due to weather

    The Los Alamos National Laboratory will be closed Monday due to the winter storm currently gripping the Los Alamos area.

    The lab posted the notice on its website at 4:42 a.m.

    Likewise, Los Alamos Public Schools have called off classes Monday. The school district posted a notice on its website shortly after 5 a.m.

  • Christmas Burst reveals neutron star collision

    A strangely powerful, long-lasting gamma-ray burst on Christmas Day, 2010 has finally been analyzed to the satisfaction of a multinational research team.
    Called the Christmas Burst, GRB 101225A was freakishly lengthy and it produced radiation at unusually varying wavelengths.
    But by matching the data with a model developed in 1998, the team was able to characterize the star explosion as a neutron star spiraling into the heart of its companion star.
    The paper, “The unusual gamma-ray burst GRB 101225A from a helium star/neutron star merger at redshift 0.33,” appears in Friday’s issue of the journal Nature.