SCHUMER, GILLIBRAND ANNOUNCE $166M IN FEDERAL FUNDS FOR BROOKHAVEN’S ION COLLIDER & $105M FOR NATIONAL SYNCHROTRON LIGHT SOURCE II IS INCLUDED IN JUST-UNVEILED OMNIBUS BILL; BNL’S COLLIDER IS ONLY REMAINING ATOM SMASHER IN COUNTRY
BNL’s Collider Was In Danger Last Year When Recommended For Potential Phase-out By Non-Binding Report – Report Stated Collider Is Essential To Scientific Research, But Cites Declining Nuclear Research Funding
Schumer, Gillibrand Have Since Fought to Secure Increased Federal Funds for BNL– Funding Helps US Remain On Forefront of Atomic Research; BNL’s Ion Collider Will Receive Nearly $1M More Than in Last Year’s Appropriations Bill & NSLS-II Will Receive $46M More Than Last Year
Collider Provides Hundreds of Jobs And Plays Important Role In Making Long Island Center of Cutting-Edge Research
U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced that the FY15 Omnibus Appropriations bill, released last night and set to pass Congress in the coming days, will increase funding to the nation's Nuclear Physics program by an additional $26 million for next fiscal year to a total of $595 million, allowing the Brookhaven National Lab's (BNL) ion collider to receive $166 million. The BNL collider was put at major risk last year when a recommendation from the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee found that BNL's ion collider would need to close if the science budget decreased, or even in the case where the budget did not increase. However, the Committee suggested that this scenario should be avoided and be replaced with a modest annual increase in the Nuclear Physics budget. Last year, Schumer and Gillibrand secured an increase as part of the Omnibus bill, allowing the facility and the jobs it supports to stay in business. This year, Schumer and Gillibrand secured an additional $1 million in funding for BNL’s ion collider. Overall, the Energy & Water development section of the Omnibus Appropriations bill, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science Nuclear Physics Account was funded at $569.9 million, allowing RHIC to receive $166 million. The funds are enough to allow for a 22-week run time.
Additionally, the Omnibus Appropriations Bill has allocated $105 million for the operations and maintenance of the National Synchrotron Light Source 2 (NSLS-II). The Omnibus appropriations bill also allocated $22.5 million for experimental tools. Last year, the bill allocated $81 million for NSLS-II, including $56 million for early operations/construction and $25 million for experimental tools. Overall, this year’s allocation is $127.5 million, $46 million more than last year.
“Additional funding for Brookhaven National Lab’s ion collider and the Light Source will help put our nation’s position at the forefront of innovation and help boost Long Island’s economy,” said Senator Schumer. “I am pleased that we have secured an increase in federal funding for Brookhaven Nation Lab to make sure the ion collider continues to operate.
“This is great news for Brookhaven National Laboratory and for all of Long Island,” Senator Gillibrand said. “Brookhaven National Laboratory has remained a major economic engine for Long Island and the broader state. This increase in funding to support Brookhaven National Lab’s ion collider and the synchrotron light source will help create jobs and keep Long Island at the forefront of scientific research and the high-tech economy.”
The Department of Energy’s Nuclear Physics program provides funding for facilities and research programs throughout the nation, allowing thousands of university researchers the opportunity to make new scientific discoveries in the growing field of nuclear physics.
A Department of Energy advisory panel last year recommended that if no additional funding becomes available, the agency should shut down Brookhaven National Lab’s ion collider in favor of construction of a facility in Michigan. Brookhaven National Lab’s collider currently supports 800 jobs and is the only remaining ion collider of its kind in the country.