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Argonne, Air Force Research Lab to collaborate on defense technologies, research


Officials from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory and the Air Force Research Laboratory signed an agreement today that promises to speed the delivery of technological advances to American military forces while saving taxpayer dollars.

The memorandum of understanding will promote a cooperative exchange of technical requirements, science and technology information and result in leveraged program development between the two labs. Officials expect the agreement to improve the cost, schedule and performance goals associated with developing critical technologies for the nation through the coordination of related efforts and information exchanges.

The new relationship between Argonne and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) will provide an opportunity to establish a common and consistent path into the respective technology bases of each facility. “Argonne and AFRL can access each other’s technologies and capabilities to meet our nation’s needs,” according to Sandra Biedron, director of Argonne’s Department of Defense Project Office.

Also as part of the agreement, AFRL scientists will have access to Argonne’s world-class research facilities, such as the Advanced Photon Source, the Intense Pulsed Neutron Source, the Electron Microscopy Center and the Center for Nanoscale Materials. The AFRL will include Argonne researchers in its Integrated Product Teams and other working groups as appropriate.

Argonne laboratory director Robert Rosner predicts great advances for the nation’s security coming from this relationship. “This agreement provides an opportunity to establish a common and consistent path into our respective technology bases,” Rosner said. “This collaborative research effort will help meet the needs and requirements of emerging national and homeland security challenges.”

Signing the agreement were Rosner and Maj. Gen. Ted F. Bowlds, Commander of the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

“This MOU with Argonne will enable AFRL and the Air Force to leverage some of the top research scientists and facilities in the country. In turn, we will provide Argonne access to AFRL’s finest scientists and resources. We have already begun work with Argonne and already are seeing big payoffs,” said Maj. Gen. Bowlds.

The Air Force Research Laboratory is responsible for the Air Force’s $1.5 billion science and technology program as well as additional customer funded research and development of $1.8 billion, leading to the discovery, development and integration of affordable technologies for the U.S. Air Force. The lab also oversees basic and applied research as well as advanced technologies that support the Air Force.

Argonne conducts basic and applied research and development as well as rapid prototyping to create scientific knowledge and technical solutions to meet national challenges, including in the key areas of physical and biological science and technology, clean and abundant energy sources, restoration and protection of the environment, national and homeland security and nuclear nonproliferation.

The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory conducts basic and applied scientific research across a wide spectrum of disciplines, ranging from high-energy physics to climatology and biotechnology. Since 1990, Argonne has worked with more than 600 companies and numerous federal agencies and other organizations to help advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for the future. Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.


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