A few months ago, I announced my decision to retire, after five years as the director of Los Alamos National Laboratory, in June. It has been a distinct privilege to serve as your director. I am pleased with our many achievements. The Laboratory has delivered on its national security commitments, provided solutions to unanticipated challenges, and invested in new tools and technologies that are essential to the continued success of the Laboratory.
A vibrant science, technology, and engineering enterprise is the technical underpinning for all of LANL's diverse missions. LANL's expertise provides the basis for confidence in the stockpile in the absence of nuclear testing and supports development of solutions to protect the environment and human health while helping meet future energy needs.
The Laboratory, as it has for the last 68 years, remains committed to sustaining confidence in the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile through a science-based understanding of weapons safety, reliability, and performance. I have signed five annual-assessment letters to our nation's President as the Laboratory director, and I am keenly aware of the daunting technical challenges we have overcome to meet national security missions. In 2007, the Laboratory reestablished the capability to manufacture pits for the W88. In 2008, the first W76-1 life-extended warhead was assembled. Design for extending the life of the B61 bomb, vital to national deterrence, is in progress. Later this year, the Chemistry & Metallurgy Research Replacement Radiological Laboratory Utility Office Building will be dedicated—a step in providing a modern actinide research and development complex.
We have significantly advanced high-performance computing since I joined the Laboratory. Roadrunner, one of the world's fastest supercomputers, broke the petascale barrier. Cielo is up and running, supporting research at three laboratories. Exascale computing—the next great challenge that must be addressed—will truly revolutionize simulation.
Signature experimental facilities are cornerstones of the Laboratory's scientific capabilities. The Dual-Axis Radiographic Hydrodynamic Test facility has performed successful experiments that provided multiple high-resolution, time-sequenced images. The Los Alamos Neutron Science Center is one of the world's most powerful linear accelerators with multiple beamlines that contribute to medicine, stockpile performance, and genetics. MaRIE (Matter-Radiation Interactions in Extremes), the proposed signature science facility, will be built onto the LANSCE infrastructure and will incorporate a 20-billion-electron-volt electron accelerator, new x-ray beams, and three experimental halls and laboratories.
As my time as the Laboratory director draws to a close, I want to express my profound gratitude to all who have worked creatively and tirelessly to support the Laboratory. It has been my extreme privilege to have served as the ninth director of Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Los Alamos National Laboratory Director