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Sandia --
Providing Exceptional Service in the National Interest

Fact Sheet

Sandia is a large multiprogram laboratory with an employee population of 8,000 and an annual budget of $1.3 billion. It has more than four decades of experience serving the nation with research and development of nuclear weapons and other defense technologies and energy and environmental technologies.

In a changing world, Sandia has retained its focus on enhancing national security by providing solutions to technology-based problems with major national significance. It is able to do this through a special mix of core competencies, integrated capabilities, and unique facilities that allow Sandia to double as a technology resource for not only the Department of Energy but also other federal agencies and American industry.

The increasingly important DOE initiative to transfer to industry technologies developed at its laboratories fits well into Sandia's national security role because that security must include a robust economy generated by industries equipped to compete in the world marketplace. Building on its research foundations, Sandia is focusing on three areas that will help increase national competitiveness while maintaining competencies to continue its traditional missions in national defense, energy security, and environmental technologies. Those three areas are advanced manufacturing technology, electronics, and advanced information technology.

Research partnerships continue to increase at Sandia, which in three years has entered into more than 200 cooperative research and development agreements with industry having a total research value of more than $600 million. The laboratory also has increased its emphasis in making commercial licenses for Sandia-developed technologies available to US companies. Sandia's prowess in developing these technologies was demonstrated again in 1994 when, for the second straight year, the laboratory received more R&D 100 Awards than any other institution entering the prestigious competition. The awards, sponsored by R&D Magazine, recognized the 100 most technologically significant new products of the year.

Companies ranging from only a few employees to the nation's largest have benefited from their collaborations with Sandia. One of the most productive partnerships has been Sandia's work with SEMATECH, the semiconductor consortium that is collaborating with Sandia on more than 40 projects. SEMATECH officials have praised these projects for saving the industry money and time and have said some of the work "represents a model for the way this activity should be done in the future." Sandia also is working with representatives of the electronics industry in other ways, including an industry and government task force to evaluate environmentally friendly, low-residue soldering technologies for use in manufacturing military electronic components.

But electronics and semiconductor manufacturers are by no means the only industries benefiting from Sandia's research. Other companies collaborating with Sandia in dual-use research include representatives of the automotive and textile industries. Sandia also is helping smaller companies by offering technical assistance on specific manufacturing problems those companies may encounter.

Sandia's role in national defense remains as vigorous as it ever was, but the emphasis has moved from a model based primarily on the production of large numbers of increasingly sophisticated nuclear weapons to one based on the requirement for a smaller weapons stockpile and greater effort on activities to reduce the threat posed by the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

An example of these peacekeeping efforts at Sandia include the Cooperative Monitoring Center, which began hosting visits by arms control specialists from throughout the world in the summer of 1994. The center was established to acquaint visitors with a wide range of sharable technology that can be used to monitor compliance with regional arms control or environmental agreements.

The past year also was an active period for interactions between Sandia scientists and engineers and those in the countries of the former Soviet Union. These collaborative efforts were focused on steps that can be taken to reduce the dangers posed by aging nuclear facilities and residual Cold War weapons and to share technical data that can help industries in the US and the countries of the former Soviet Union.

Sandia's energy and environment programs also are reflecting the changing nature of the national laboratories in national imperatives. Sandia is continuing to research a broad range of energy technologies, but in this area also, the laboratory is putting a renewed emphasis on helping American industry to compete in the global market. Sandia's environmental activities are concentrating on timely and cost-effective cleanup of laboratory sites while cooperating in research with other DOE facilities and industry on advanced environmental technologies.

Lockheed Martin Corporation assumed management of Sandia for DOE in the fall of 1993. Sandia Corporation is the Lockheed Martin subsidiary responsible for the management and operation of the laboratory, which is headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and has another laboratory complex in Livermore, Calif.

Sandia is a multiprogram laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a Lockheed Martin Company, for the United States Department of Energy.
Media Contact
Chris Miller

Last modified: August 6, 1997

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