The Cornell High-Energy Synchrotron Source (CHESS) Is One Of Two High-Energy Synchrotron X-Ray Sources In The United States; The Lab Has Generated Revolutionary Scientific Innovation In Numerous Fields, Including Discoveries That Led To Two Nobel Prizes 

Senators Today Announce $8M In Additional Funding For CHESS Lab Sub-Facility To Support Two High-Energy X-Ray Beamlines

Schumer, Gillibrand: Additional Funding Will Keep Cornell’s CHESS At The Cutting Edge Of X-Ray Innovation

Steadfast champions for cutting edge technological innovation in Upstate New York, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced that they have secured $8,000,000 in additional federal funding for the Cornell High-Energy Synchrotron Source (CHESS) Lab in the 2020 end-of-year omnibus legislation. The senators said the funding will enable a sub-facility at CHESS consisting of two high-energy X-ray beamlines optimized for Air Force research needs, to have researchers, collaborators, and original equipment manufacturers to employ real-time, three-dimensional x-ray characterization methods to test a broad range of mission-critical structural and functional materials.

“This funding for Cornell's CHESS Lab will ensure America and Cornell University remain at the cutting edge of innovation in high-energy X-ray applications," said Senator Schumer. "CHESS is a unique facility for the scientific workforce that keeps the U.S competitive, and is part of the lifeblood of our scientific community, enabling researchers to make advancements in everything from clean energy technologies to stronger and more resilient infrastructure. I have been proud to fight for and deliver funding to support CHESS Lab and will continue working tirelessly to do so."

“The Cornell CHESS lab is a major asset for Central New York and the entire nation,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This Ithaca based lab is one of only two locations in the country with the advanced x-ray technology necessary to produce high performing materials for aircrafts used by the U.S. Air Force and other industries. With this federal funding, the Air Force and CHESS lab partnership will have the resources needed to continue their groundbreaking work and reaffirm New York as a leader in scientific research.”

CHESS is a high-energy synchrotron light source, which is a highly-sophisticated x-ray machine. CHESS Lab’s research has led to development of higher performance materials for tactical aircraft, a better understanding of metal fatigue, improved processes for additive manufacturing technologies, and scientific workforce development. AFRL research conducted at CHESS is resulting in significant savings in aircraft development and maintenance costs. CHESS is one of only two national hard x-ray synchrotron facilities in the country, and the only one located at a research university. For that reason, CHESS is a unique training ground for the nation’s scientific workforce, and plays a vital role in keeping the U.S. competitive. CHESS is a multi-disciplinary facility that supports critical research in physics, materials science, chemistry, biology, engineering, and art history. The facility, which also carries out basic research in accelerator science, is used by universities, the government and private industries across New York, the country and world.

CHESS is a national user facility, funded principally by the National Science Foundation. Senator Schumer is a long-time advocate for CHESS and was instrumental in facilitating the process that allowed CHESS to submit a peer-reviewed proposal that, based on scientific merit, resulted in two five-year, $49 million and $100 million awards from NSF in 2014 and 2019 respectively. Since then, CHESS has continued to forge ahead with its groundbreaking work. Additionally, Schumer was the lead negotiator of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, which resulted in a historic, $130 billion increase in domestic investments for agencies like the NSF, boosting the likelihood of CHESS receiving this new 5-year cooperative agreement with the agency.


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