Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

Media Contact: Fred Strohl (strohlhf@ornl.gov)
Communications and External Relations


ORNL presents annual Director's Awards to three divisions

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 9, 1996 — The 1996 Director's Awards at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) went to the Metals and Ceramics (M&C) Division, the Instrumentation and Controls (I&C) Division and the Office of Laboratory Protection. The Director's Awards give special recognition to those divisions which have contributed the most toward environment, safety and health; research and development; and operations and support, respectively.

A 90 percent reduction of hazardous waste by the M&C Division was just one of the factors that netted it the prestigious award for environment, safety and health. The group was able to completely eliminate acid wastes through a move to digital techniques for electron microscopes and other photographic needs. This, together with silver recovery of any remaining chemicals, curtailed the photographic waste stream from more than 12,000 pounds in 1991 to zero today.

These reductions resulted in savings of $1.3 million in cost avoidance, $600,000 in cost savings and $500,000 in direct funding to the M&C Division.

Furthermore, a novel between-use-storage-area program, developed and implemented to facilitate reuse of chemicals and reduce waste disposal costs, is becoming a model throughout the national laboratory system. The program saved $197,000 in 1995, and the M&C Division has received requests for implementation in other divisions.

The Instrumentation and Controls Division received its kudos in research and development excellence for its many advanced applications on projects ranging from submarines to textiles. I&C has developed instruments through its Acoustical Measurement Facilities Improvement Program (AMFIP) to help the U.S. Navy measure how much sound is being emitted from its silent submarines.

Another endeavor by I&C includes Sematech, a consortium of semi-conductor manufacturers which make electronic chips. I&C is conducting research to improve the manufacturing industry for advanced integrated circuits and has developed technology that automatically finds defects in chips through video images.

Furthermore, I&C is involved with the American Textile Partnership (AMTEX), a consortium of 11 DOE laboratories and 120 textile companies working to develop technologies strengthening the industry's productivity in the United States.

The Office of Laboratory Protection received the award for operations and support and was instrumental in making ORNL more user friendly through the installation of badge readers, and bringing about substantial cost reductions as a result.

ORNL, one of DOE's multiprogram national research and development facilities, is managed by Lockheed Martin Energy Research Corp.