SNS Annual Budget Gets Nod From Congress

KNOXVILLE – The Spallation Neutron Source science project in Oak Ridge is getting some financial support in Congress.

The U.S. House Appropriation Committee’s energy and water development subcommittee has approved $225 million for the project’s annual construction needs.

Thom Mason, associate laboratory director for the SNS, said he was pleased at the support he received from Congress.

“I think this support reflects the fact that the project is on track,” Mason said, “and an important part of the project staying on track is having the money arrive when we need it, so we can move ahead with the work.”

The Spallation Neutron Source is being built at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and is expected to open by 2006. The final cost of the facility is projected to reach $1.4 billion.

Mason said the SNS is a multi-user facility that will help scientists study the nature of materials in a wide range of academic areas.

“It’ll be used by chemists, physicists, biologists, materials scientists and engineers,” Mason said, “and any type of science where the structure and dynamics of materials are important.”

The House subcommittee also approved funds for the creation of a nanoscience center in Oak Ridge and modernizing the Oak Ridge Y-12 nuclear weapons plant.

The Oak Ridge National Laboratory is managed by a joint venture between the University of Tennessee and the Battelle Memorial Institute.