300 Area Capabilities
Nearly half of PNNL's experimental laboratory space and about 1,000 staff members are directly linked to the research and development conducted in the 300 Area of the Hanford Site.
Programs Impacted, National and Homeland Security
For national and global security clients, PNNL is working on the next generation of integrated detection and analysis systems to help prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction globally and terrorist attacks on our homeland.
- Proliferation Detection, Arms control and treaty verification for the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and the Department of Defense
- Ultra-trace detection for numerous clients
- Radiological/Nuclear countermeasures portfolio for DHS
- Border monitoring programs for DHS
- Radiochemistry and actinide chemistry programs for Office of Biological and Environmental Research (OBER), NNSA, DHS
- Waste form evaluation for the Office of Radiological Waste (RW)
- Environmental Technologies to support DOE site cleanup
- Tritium Production Program (NNSA)
- Pu disposition (Environmental Management (EM), NNSA)
- Standards support portifolo for DHS materials (Office of Science (SC), EE, Nuclear Energy, Science and Technology, NRC, DHS, NNSA, private).
A PNNL technician is removing one of the archival bottles used to store xenon samples from the Automated Radioxenon Sampler-Analyzer, an award-winning technology developed at the Lab to detect xenon from underground nuclear weapons testing. This research is carried out in the 300 Area of the Hanford Site.
- World-class capability in low-level detection of radionuclides
- Key developer of technologies for treaty verification
- Lead role in Rad/Nuc DHS R&D portfolio
- Leads DHS Radiation Portal Monitoring Program
- Key interface with northwest university collaborators in radiological / nuclear sciences
- Developed numerous technologies and methods for Hanford contractors to overcome technical obstacles and enable cleanup on schedule
- Over 30 years experience in fuel cycle development
- World-class researchers in irradiated materials
- Major developer of dosimetry technologies & methods
- Only NIST accredited dose certification laboratory in complex
Our scientists also are advancing the fundamental understanding of biological systems and harnessing the potential of biological processes to address national needs. Some examples of that work include:
- leading new discoveries in biological and microbial sciences
- detection of biological agents
- technologies to clean up contaminated environments
- technologies to sequester carbon that contributes to global warming.
We also are solving critical environmental challenges facing the nation and the region including helping to ensure the timely opening of a safe, permanent, storage facility for the nation's high-level nuclear waste by understanding the long-term behavior of spent fuel and nuclear waste forms.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory researcher "holds up" the building blocks of improved ionizing radiation measurement, 2D imaging, and high density data storage. The technology, known as Optically Stimulated Luminescence, involves crystalline materials that luminescence in proportion to the ionizing radiation exposure. Arms control and personnel dosimeters are well-developed applications of this technology.
- DOE Genomes program
- Environmental impact, remediation, and risk assessment programs for OBER, EM
- Biology, toxicology, and detection programs for DHHS, DHS, Environmental Protection Agency, private industry
- Subsurface science programs for EM, SC
- Fish passage and aquatic ecology for Bonneville Power Administration, EE, Army Core of Engineers, EM
- Leadership role in Genomes program development
- Top contributor to major OBER programs (Natural and Accelerated Bioremediation Program, Environmental Management Science Program)
- Key northwest role in natural resource issues