Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

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


ORNL's Gat awarded for work with metric system

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 25, 1997 — Uri Gat of the Department of Energy's (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has received an Award of Appreciation from the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).

The award was presented in appreciation for Gat's instrumental role in various capacities in developing the new, unified U.S. metric standard, AMST/IEEE ANSI SI-10, standard for the use of the International System of Units (SI): the modern metric system.

Gat serves as vice chairman of ASTM's Committee E-43 on SI Practice. The committee has worked for many years to unify the two major U.S. metric practice guides (ASTM E380 and IEEE/ANSI 268) into the new SI metric standard (S-10) now adopted in the United States. This metric system is more precisely called the International System of Units (SI). The committee responsibilities included administering and keeping current the U.S. metric practice standard - ASTM E380.

The committee ensured that the new U.S. standard of SI metric is in harmony with the international approved SI. The SI is approved by the General Committee of Weights and Measures, which is established by the Treaty of the Meter. The United States is one of the original signers of the treaty.

"If we (the United States) do not use the same system the rest of the world uses, converting from our present inch-pound system will be an exercise in futility," said Oliver Lewis, chairman of the committee. "Future generations of engineers will benefit from the simplified and coherent system of measurement, which is the hallmark of SI."

Gat joined ORNL in 1974 as manager of the Gas-Cooled Fast Breeder Reactor Program. He managed the Liquid Metal Fast Breeder Reactor Program from 1980 to 1982. He served as group leader in the Energy and Nuclear Technology Section during the next 13 years. He moved to his present position as scientist in the Engineering Technology Division in 1995.

Gat earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical and nuclear engineering technology from the Israel Institute of Technology. He earned a doctorate in nuclear and chemical engineering from the Technical University of Aachen, Germany.

He served in the Israeli Air Force as a fighter pilot and jet instructor.

Gat is a member of several professional societies: the American Nuclear Society, the U.S. Metric Association (director for Tennessee) and the American Society for Testing and Materials.

He and his wife, Ruth, live in Oak Ridge. They have two children, Iril and Erann.

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