initial funding came in at $8M USD and will fund much of the initial
construction of the new lab, dubbed the Energy
Sciences Building (ESB). Construction on the building will
begin in 2011.
Argonne Director Eric Isaacs says the
new lab is vitally needed as many of the research center's labs are
aging badly. He states, "The ESB will house the kind of
research infrastructure that is necessary to conduct breakthrough
science. Compared to many of Argonne's existing buildings, some
of which are more than 50 years old, the ESB will enable highly
interactive scientific collaborations by bringing together in one
place energy-related scientific research that is presently spread
throughout the Argonne campus."
associate laboratory director for Energy Sciences and Engineering
highlighted the new lab's agenda, stating, "The work in the ESB
will focus on four central themes associated with Argonne's energy
security strategy, strengthen our basic research capabilities, and
facilitate synergies that enhance both. The ESB is another step
in Argonne's long-range campus modernization plan"
lab will be a hotbed for materials research. One of the four
key types of research will be energy conversion materials, including
photovoltaics and thermal fluids. A second key objective is to
develop more efficient solar power harvesting devices. A third
research focus is to develop better catalysts and materials for fuel
cells, considered a potential candidate to drive future vehicles.
A final focus is to improve energy storage solutions, reducing the
possibility of interruptions from wind or solar power sources.
lab is scheduled to be completed in 2014. Located in the
northern section of the ANL campus, the multi-story building will
offer 140,000 square feet and offer workspace for an estimated 250
The new lab comes as part of a sweeping
modernization effort by the Office of Science (SC), which oversees
Argonne and nine other basic science-oriented national laboratories
for the U.S. DOE. Describes Angela Harvey, director of the
Infrastructure, Programs and Projects Division at the DOE Argonne
Site Office, "The focus of this modernization effort is major
capital investment in the infrastructure to ensure the continued
vitality of the national laboratories and to improve the readiness of
the infrastructure to support current and future missions of DOE.
This initiative involves all the SC laboratories and includes more
than 30 projects totaling more than $2 billion. The end result
will be modern, safe, quality infrastructure that will allow the
laboratories to ensure scientific leadership now and in the
While Argonne National Laboratory is
government-funded, its independently managed by the business UChicago
Argonne LLC. Located in Illinois, near Chicago, the lab
cooperates with hundreds of universities on research and employs
researchers from over 60 countries. Research programs include
physics, chemistry, electronics,
alternative energy, automotive research, and more.