Energy’s largest science and energy laboratory.
Managed since April 2000 by a partnership of the
University of Tennessee and Battelle, ORNL was
established in 1943 as a part of the secret Manhattan
Project to pioneer a method for producing and
separating plutonium. During the 1950s and 1960s,
ORNL became an international center for the study of
nuclear energy and related research in the physical and
life sciences. With the creation of DOE in the 1970s,
ORNL’s mission broadened to include a variety of
energy technologies and strategies. Today the laboratory supports the nation with a peacetime science and
technology mission that is just as important as, but very different from, its role during the Manhattan Project.

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