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User Facilities Drive Innovation and Economic Growth


Brookhaven’s National Synchrotron Light Source

A bright future of scientific innovation and U.S. economic security hinges in part on the advanced research conducted at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) major user facilities, according to congressional leaders. At a June 21 hearing of the House Science, Space, and Technology’s Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, politicians, scientists, and industry leaders expressed strong support for the past triumphs and great potential of these cutting-edge facilities.

Brookhaven is home to several of the nation’s top scientific user facilities, hosting thousands of researchers dedicated to driving discoveries in fields including energy, bioscience, physics, chemistry, and medicine. Among these are the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), the Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN), the National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS) and future NSLS-II, the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory, the Tandem Van de Graaff accelerator, and facilities for computational analysis and modeling. 

“At user facilities, federal funds support more efficient cars and trucks; more effective drugs; lighter and stronger metals; cheaper and more durable batteries; cleaner power plants; reduced reliance on foreign energy; a clearer picture of our changing climate; and even a better understanding of the origins of the universe and the nature of space and time,” said U.S. Rep. Brad Miller. 

Ernie Hall, a chief scientist at General Electric Global Research, spoke highly of his experience partnering with DOE facilities at the hearing. He specifically noted the commercial impact and economic boost created by GE’s collaboration with Brookhaven Lab. GE now plans to open a new battery manufacturing plant in Schenectady, NY, that owes basic breakthroughs in underlying technology to research conducted at Brookhaven’s National Synchrotron Light Source (NSLS).

2012-3373  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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