This will be the last Research News that you will receive with greetings from me. As you are well aware, Carol Burns arrived at the Lab on August 1, and assumed the role of Deputy Laboratory Director for Research (DLDR) and Chief Research Officer (CRO). Please join me in welcoming Carol to the Lab.
I began my tenure as DLDR and CRO in September of 2010, and can look back at almost 11 years of incredible and rapid change at the Lab. In 2010, the big initiatives at the Lab were the development of the Next Generation Light Source (NGLS) and of the second campus at the Richmond Field Station (RFS), which was envisioned as a home for our biosciences research. While these plans were ultimately not realized as originally conceived, they led to some of the signature projects that we are building today at the Lab: without the NGLS initiative we would not have had the ALS-U, and without the RFS project we would not have been successful in launching the biosciences campus on the Bayview site, cleaning up the Bevatron legacy, and constructing the Integrative Genomics Building (IGB) and BioEPIC.
Another 2010 initiative was Carbon Cycle 2.0 (CC2.0), which aimed to integrate the basic and applied work done at the Lab on climate modeling and reducing carbon emissions. Again, we are benefiting today from CC2.0: it established the deep collaborations between applied energy projects and basic energy science projects and positioned the Lab to be on the winning teams for two hubs, the Joint Center for Energy Storage Leadership (JCESR) and the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP, now the Liquid Sunlight Alliance, or LiSA).
In 2015 I was proud to see the Computational Research and Theory Facility (CRT, now known as Wang Hall) completed at the Lab, after an arduous eight-year long process. Wang Hall not only provides a home for the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), Energy Sciences Network (ESnet), and Computational Research Division, but also signifies the central role that computing has taken on in science at the Lab. By the end of the 2000s, every single research division had computational projects dealing with simulation and large scale data analysis. The trend was accelerated by the rapid adoption of machine learning and the introduction of quantum computing at the Lab. Machine Learning for Science and Quantum Information Science are now Lab-wide activities connecting multiple areas.
What I have learned during the decade is that the Lab is composed of incredibly talented people, and that we are a community of innovative and creative scientists and operations staff who are highly motivated to address the most challenging problems and bring progress to the world. But what I also learned is that there is no way to fully understand the depth and breadth of the Lab’s talents; to leverage this richness and diversity, we have to be able to bring the right people together who can contribute to solving a problem. I felt that this has been one of my major contributions: to introduce and then support the right groups of scientists to work on a project together, and be prepared for the next funding opportunity.
With that in mind, I would like to thank all of you for your dedicated work, for your brilliance, and your motivation and commitment to the Lab’s mission and stewardship principles. We are facing new and daunting challenges: COVID-19 continues to challenge us, just as we are also experiencing the dramatic impact of climate change. So I am looking forward to continuing to cheer on Carol and the Lab research community, as you collaborate in a rich and diverse environment to bring science solutions to the world. I am planning to be around for the 100th birthday of the Lab in 2031 and am very much looking forward to seeing what you will accomplish in the next decade.
Best of success,
|2021 Annual Lab Plan Presented to DOE
Every year, Lab leadership presents an Annual Lab Plan to the Department of Energy, sharing science research priorities and initiatives for the Lab and for each research area, as well as infrastructure and operational priorities.
Intellectual Property Office (IPO) Leadership Change
Russell Carrington (left above), the Lab’s Chief Technology Transfer Officer and head of the Intellectual Property Office (IPO), has decided to leave the Lab effective August 31, 2021. Todd Pray (right above) will head IPO while a search is undertaken for a permanent replacement and while continuing to lead the Strategic Partnerships Office. Read Lab Director Mike Witherell’s message.
Picking Nobel Laureates’ Brains at the 2021 Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting
In July, three Lab scientists rubbed virtual elbows with Nobel laureates from around the world at this year’s Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. Lindsay Bassman (CSA), Marlene Turner (PSA), and Michael Whitaker (EESA) participated in the event from June 27 to July 2, as part of a UC program. They came away with new knowledge and fresh inspiration.
Applications for the 2022 Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting are now being accepted.
Updated NIH Requirements for Funding Applications and Research Performance Progress Reports (RPPR)
NIH has updated its funding application and RPPR progress report forms and instructions to provide full transparency and disclosure of all research activities, foreign and domestic. These requirements apply to all funding applications and RPPRs due on or after May 25, 2021. Read on for more information.
Change in Publication Review Policy
Starting in June 2021, authors of papers, presentations, and other externally-facing communications are solely responsible for reviewing their materials for potential inventions, and for submitting records of invention for these potential inventions to the Intellectual Property Office.
Export Control Video Series
The Export Compliance Office (ECO) is offering a series of export control informational videos which cover a variety of topics, including research, shipping, biological agents, and travel abroad. The entire series can be completed in less than 40 minutes. You can also complete each of the modules independently. Access this optional training through Berkeley Lab’s Learning Management System. For additional information, contact your Divisional export control liaisons or the ECO at email@example.com.
Berkeley Lab Collaboration Initiative with UC Davis and other UC Campuses Brings Researchers Together
When our work “with campus” is mentioned, most people think about our strong partnership with the University of California, Berkeley. But the Lab has also built strong collaborations with many other UC campuses through the years, including UC Davis, UCSF, UC Santa Barbara, UCLA, UC San Diego, and UC Merced. Read about our collaboration initiatives with UC Davis and other UC campuses.
Three Questions for Rachel Slaybaugh, Cyclotron Road
In January, in the middle of a pandemic, Rachel Slaybaugh was named Division Director of Cyclotron Road. To this role, she brought her strong scientific background–—she also serves as associate professor of nuclear engineering at UC Berkeley. She also brought her experience in research and development, as a former program director at DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), whose mission is to advance high-potential and high-impact energy technologies. Rachel shared her thoughts on Cyclotron Road’s role and her plans for its future.