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By Cara Laaschshare:

NEXT Project Receives Secretary's Achievement Award

award presentation

Robert Caradonna, Federal Project Director receives the award from US Menezes with his colleagues (from left to right): Dr. Erik Johnson, Dr. Jeffrey Keister, Dr. Philip Kraushaar and Dr. Steven Hulbert. (Image by Department of Energy Office of Project Management)

On Wednesday, Mar. 14, Under Secretary of Energy Mark Menezes presented the Secretary’s Achievement Award—a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Project Management (PM) Award—to the National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II) Experimental Tools (NEXT) project management team for completing the project on schedule and under budget, and for delivering scientific instruments to NSLS-II that will benefit research for years to come.

The NEXT project team coordinated the development and construction of five new beamlines (experimental stations) at NSLS-II, a highly advanced synchrotron light source and a DOE Office of Science User Facility located at DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory. Scientists use NSLS-II’s ultra-bright light to study materials with nanoscale resolution and exquisite sensitivity. The five new beamlines developed through NEXT complement the existing beamline portfolio at NSLS-II, and offer new, unique, and cutting-edge scientific capabilities.

“These state-of-the-art beamlines support the DOE Office of Science mission to deliver scientific discoveries and major scientific tools to transform our understanding of nature and to advance the energy, economic, and national security of the United States,” said Robert Caradonna, DOE Brookhaven Site Office Federal Project Director. “This award reflects the drive and dedication of the NEXT project team that made this endeavor a huge success. It was an honor to work with such talented people on such an important a project.”

Each year, during PM’s annual Project Management Workshop, the office recognizes DOE-funded projects and their leadership teams with the Secretary’s Achievement Award for demonstrating excellence in project management. This year, the award honors the significant achievements of the NEXT team, who completed this multi-year project on schedule and under budget, while adding additional capabilities and features to each beamline.

The NEXT team

Click on the image to download a high-resolution version. The NEXT team celebrates the completion of the project in NSLS-II's lobby.

“This award is a source of pride for all the staff at NSLS-II and Brookhaven Lab who worked on NEXT,” said Steve Hulbert, NEXT Project Manager. “For me, the best part of working on NEXT was establishing strong positive working relationships with the staff who designed and constructed these state-of-the-art beamlines.”

The NEXT project team considers the additional project scope, which enhanced the scientific capabilities of the five beamlines while maintaining important project management metrics, to be the greatest challenge and success of the project. The project team is proud to have delivered five cutting-edge beamlines to the scientific community.

“Developing accurate estimates for the remaining costs during the project’s execution was an additional challenge,” said Jeff Keister, Deputy Project Manager of NEXT. “To address this, we developed methods for incorporating contract commitments and labor revisions into our estimates while beamlines were being transitioned to operations. I am excited to see the beamline teams exploring the new capabilities, which NEXT has brought to NSLS-II, and the scientific discoveries these will enable.”

Scientists from across the country and around the world can use the NEXT beamlines to engineer new materials and watch them grow in real-time, study evolving atomic structures at reactive surfaces, and investigate the electronic properties of novel materials with ultrahigh energy resolution.

“The new NEXT beamlines enhance NSLS-II’s capabilities in our scientific focus areas, including emergent phenomena, energy conversion and complex materials, and place us at the forefront of these scientific endeavors,” said John Hill, NSLS-II director. “This award is a wonderful recognition of everyone’s hard work and dedication to deliver these new beamlines, and it reflects our capability to simultaneously expand our portfolio and run a successful science program.”

NSLS-II will continue to grow and expand its capabilities, and has the capacity to add at least 30 more cutting-edge beamlines for future research.

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit

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2018-12812  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office