Photo Credit: National University of Malaysia
Rising energy demand in Southeast Asia could contribute to a significant growth in nuclear power over the coming decades. As states invest in new nuclear power programs, they must also simultaneously develop indigenous expertise to ensure that these programs are safe and effective as well as compliant with international nonproliferation and safeguards obligations.
The International Nuclear Safeguards and Engagement Program (INSEP), a program within the Office of Nonproliferation and International Security at NNSA, works with countries that are developing nuclear programs build the safeguards expertise needed to ensure that new energy initiatives are securely operated. Last month, an INSEP team traveled to Malaysia to participate in an International Workshop on Safeguards Curriculum Development at the National University of Malaysia (UKM). The event brought together experts from Malaysia, the Republic of Korea and the United States to support UKM with the development of a Safeguards, Safety and Security Program. While the workshop focused on the creation of an indigenous safeguards education program specifically for Malaysia, it also supported the shared goal of the United States and Republic of Korea to develop the next generation of safeguards experts around the world.
Sandia Site Office Manager Patty Wagner has announced that she will be retiring effective Feb. 3, 2012 after 31 years of federal service.
As Sandia Site Office manager, she was responsible for overseeing the $2.5 billion contract for Sandia National Laboratories and ensuring the safe and secure operations of the laboratories. From December 2003 to January 2004, she was the lead negotiator on the Sandia contract, which includes innovative new contracting language. In 2008, she led the NNSA's Acquisition Strategy for NNSA's production missions resulting in a decision to conduct a competition resulting in a single contract for the management of the Y-12 National Security Complex and the Pantex Plant, with an option for the phase-in of Tritium Operations performed at the Savannah River Site. While serving as the Sandia Site Office manager, she also served as the chair of the Source Evaluation Board responsible for the $1.7 billion nuclear production contract competition.
Prior to coming to the Sandia Site Office, she joined the former DOE/NNSA Albuquerque Operations Office in January 1997 where she served as the assistant manager for Business Operations and in February 2002 was promoted to the deputy manager for Business & Administration and managed approximately 300 Federal personnel. She began working for DOE in 1995 as the chief of staff at the Rocky Flats Field Office in Golden, Colo. Prior to working for DOE, she worked for the Resolution Trust Corporation in Denver from June 1991 to April 1995. She held other senior management positions with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Division of Liquidation dating back to April 1984. Her federal career began in 1978 as a bank examiner for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
She is the recipient of two Presidential Rank Awards reserved for the top senior executives in government who demonstrate exceptional service over an extended period of time. She was awarded the meritorious level in 2001, an award reserved for the top 5 percent of senior executives and the distinguished level in 2008, an award reserved for the top 1 percent of senior executives. She holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from New Mexico State University. A Santa Fe native, she has lived in Texas, Colorado, and presently resides in Albuquerque, N.M.
Don Cook, NNSA’s Deputy Administrator for Defense Programs, toured Y-12's analytical chemistry labs during a visit to Y-12 National Security Complex yesterday.
Y-12's analytical chemistry work is highly technical and essential for worker safety, the nation's nuclear deterrent, and global nuclear nonproliferation efforts.
Cook toured Building 9995 to see Y-12's analytical chemistry capabilities first-hand. The building dates to the 1940s and has been expanded and retrofitted for its current work. Cook also discussed how a portion of the lab's function will be re-established in less space with new equipment in the new Uranium Processing Facility (UPF).
Plant Lab Manager Tom Oatts, at right, discusses lab operations with (from left) Steve Goodrum, NNSA's assistant deputy administrator for Stockpile Management; John Gertsen, B&W vice president of UPF programs; Dan Hoag, acting Y-12 site manager; and Cook.
The first four racks of NNSA’s Sequoia Supercomputer have arrived at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Sequoia, a 20 petaflops (quadrillion floating operations per second) system based on BlueGene technology, will help continue to ensure the safety and reliability of the nation's aging nuclear deterrent. Sequoia will also help maintain U.S. leadership in high performance computing, promote scientific discovery and advance President Obama’s nuclear security agenda.
Deliveries of the system will continue through April 2012. Integration will take place in phases with final acceptance of the 96-rack system scheduled for September 2012.
By fall Sequoia is expected to be the most powerful supercomputer in the world and will be approximately twice as fast as today's most powerful system. To put this into perspective, if each of the 6.7 billion people on earth had a hand calculator and worked together on a calculation 24 hours per day, 365 days a year, it would take 320 years to do what Sequoia will do in one hour.
Robert “Dino” Herrera has been named acting deputy manager of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Y-12 Site Office, replacing Dan Hoag who has been named Acting YSO manager. His assignment to YSO was effective Jan. 4, 2012.
Herrera has been a member of the Senior Executive Service since 2006 with managerial experience at NNSA Headquarters, Sandia Site Office, Los Alamos Site Office, and the Albuquerque Operations Office.
In his permanent assignment, Herrera serves as the deputy associate deputy administrator, Office of Infrastructure and Construction in Defense Programs. In this role, Herrera provides executive support to the Associate Deputy Administrator in directing the management of designated programs for the operations and maintenance of select NNSA facilities.
Before joining NNSA, Herrera was a resident engineer (head of construction office) with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). His USACE duty stations included King Khalid Military City, Saudi Arabia, and the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, Carlsbad, N.M.
An appreciation party was held last night for Ted Sherry, who has retired as Site Office Manager for Y-12. Ted was recognized for his work at Y-12 and commitment to federal service. The event was sponsored by the East Tennessee Economic Council, the Energy, Technology and Environmental Business Association, and the Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce. To see the pictures from last night’s event click here:
Ted Bowyer, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, has been elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Bowyer is an internationally recognized expert in nuclear nonproliferation and nuclear physics, specifically the detection of extremely low level airborne radioactive emissions that are definitive signatures for nuclear explosions.
At PNNL, he manages the Nuclear Explosion Monitoring and Policy program for NNSA’s Office of Nonproliferation Research and Development. In addition to performing fundamental and applied research in the development of systems to detect signs of proliferation, Bowyer has served as a scientific advisor on issues related to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization. He also has served as an advisor to the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.S. State Department, National Academy of Sciences, and at the Conference on Disarmament.
Bowyer is a recipient of the Federal Laboratory Consortium Award for the design of the NNSA-funded Automated Radioxenon Sampler-Analyzer, which detects nuclear detonations by analyzing the atmosphere for traces of radioactive material that seeps from underground nuclear explosions.
Bowyer and others will be honored at a ceremony in February at the AAAS annual meeting in Vancouver, Canada.
With the holiday season upon us, I hope you will be able to spend time with the people that make your life happier and more meaningful. Whether it’s an office get-together or family gathering, this is a special time for being with loved ones, family, and friends.
This is also a time of year that inspires us to look back on what we have accomplished together. Each day I’m impressed and humbled by the work you do for our country. The dedication you show to implementing the President’s nuclear security agenda and keeping the American people safe is unmatched, and you have my deepest gratitude for the professionalism and thoughtfulness with which you do it.
This year brought some of the most complex issues we have ever faced. From our response in Japan to the dismantlement of the last B53, you rose to the challenges that came our way and proved once again that NNSA has one of the most talented and diligent workforces in the Federal government. I know that 2012 will bring more even more opportunities for us to achieve great things together.
I would be remiss if I didn’t take the opportunity to remind you that the deadline for the 2011 Combined Federal Campaign is quickly approaching. If you would like to participate, it’s not too late. NNSA regularly has one of the highest participation rates in the Federal government, and the dedication you have shown to your work has been surpassed only by your dedication to helping those in need.
Neile and I wish each of you a safe and enjoyable holiday season, and look forward to the work we will do together in 2012.
NNSA celebrates the contributions of the men and women working across the nuclear security enterprise who have given back to their communities during this holiday season.
Employees have found countless ways to make this holiday season more cheerful by collecting food, shoes, and coats, or by lending a helping hand to the less fortunate in their communities. NNSA employees have also participated in various charitable campaigns that help families in their local communities.
NNSA Giving Highlights Include:
NNSA Defense Programs recently collected items for the Toys for Tots program. Nearly 20 large boxes of new and unwrapped toys were collected from throughout Forrestal Building. Don Cook, Deputy Administrator for NNSA’s Defense Programs, presented the toys to the Marines at the annual Defense Programs holiday party. Dr. Cook thanked everyone who participated in the program and commended the Marines for their continued service to the nation and for their commitment in providing toys to children who might not have otherwise receive toys during the holiday season.
Since 1947, the Toys for Tots program through the U.S. Marine Corps has distributed more than 420 million toys to more than 196 million underprivileged children. In 2010, Marines distributed toys to more than 7.2 million children.