Argonne Optimistic About Federal Funding
President Barack Obama’s proposed budget submitted to the U.S. Congress requests increased funding for the Department of Energy’s Office of Science, which would benefit laboratories such as the Argonne National Laboratory near Lemont, according to a news release from U.S. Senator Dick Durbin’s office.
The budget would include $1.6 billion for Argonne’s Basic Energy Science account and $621 million for the Advanced Scientific Computing Research account, according to the release.
These amounts would be a $116 million and $80 million increase from the previous fiscal year, respectively.
“The proposed budget will allow Argonne to continue cutting-edge research and technology development that maintains our nation’s international scientific leadership, keeps the nation safe and helps grow the U.S. economy,” Argonne Director Peter Littlewood stated in an email.
He said the funding would help with developing new supercomputers and upgrading the Advanced Photon Source, the brightest source of synchrotron X-rays in the western hemisphere.
“Both are critical to overcoming a number of the nation’s most pressing scientific and technological challenges, such as developing new efficient energy technologies, making renewable energy mainstream, and understanding and mitigating the effects of global climate change,” he said in an email.
Though Congress will ultimately present the final budget, Littlewood said he believes the budget will still include the funding that Argonne needs.
“We are confident that it will be friendly to scientific and engineering research because the Obama administration and members of both parties in Congress understand how critical it is to the nation’s future,” he said in an email.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration also awarded Argonne a nearly $2.9 million grant to study mass transit emergency preparedness, according to a news release from the office of U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski, D. Ill.
Argonne, in partnership with Pace Suburban Bus Service and Metra Commuter Rail, will research and develop a decision support tool to help emergency responders to assess a situation, develop an appropriate mitigation strategy and restore transit services effectively.
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