Sandia News

Infrastructure Operations

emergency responder ceremony
Custodians like Veronica Duran worked tirelessly to keep the Labs clean and safe throughout the pandemic.

Sanitation remains priority during COVID-19

Sandia’s Custodial Services team worked diligently to keep the entire Albuquerque site sanitized and safe for those required to work on-site. The team increased cleaning frequencies to three to six times per day, disinfecting high-traffic areas, points of contact and fomite areas. The swing shift Hot Shot team extended services to include disinfecting keypads, phone boxes and outside handrails. Sandia’s maintenance teams also remained working on-site, keeping buildings functional and ready for mission essential work. (4000)

Immersive conference room
Immersive conference rooms installed on the Sandia/CA campus use technology to enhance the experience of video conferences.

Digital infrastructure enhancements

Early in 2020, Sandia’s Facilities organization at the California site had to quickly determine how to enable work to continue remotely. Within days, the team increased telephone and virtual private network capabilities to enable remote work and mission program delivery and improve the user experience. They consolidated video collaboration and event technology for optimized service delivery. For Sandians working on-site, the team enabled classified desktop and conference room collaboration and upgraded conference room user interfaces. (8000)

people working on energy infrastructure
New mobile device storage units were installed across Sandia/NM and Sandia/CA.

What’s old is new again

A collaborative team led by Physical Security embarked on a two-year effort to remove all mobile devices from newly defined Secure Space. With this initiative, more than 900 new building signs and 180 new device storage units were installed across the Labs. For longtime employees, the change is a return to previous requirements, but for the new generation of Sandians, it was a monumental shift in security culture.NNSA is implementing the new requirement complex-wide to reduce the risks posed by the devices. (4000)

Security meets performance improvement goal

Sandia reported improvement in Category A Incidents of Security Concern over 2019, meeting a key strategic milestone for FY20. Among key actions contributing to the success were the application of additional measures to protect information transmitted within the DOE enterprise; movement of legacy information from a restricted network to a classified network; and deployment of engineered controls for email, reduced a classified network timeout and collaborative drives. (4000)

man receives COVID-19 test
The Innovation Parkway Office Center was used as a COVID-19 testing site for Sandians.

Security meets pandemic challenges

Adapting quickly to a new normal of maximum telework, International Security worked around the clock in March to bring international travelers home safely. The Personnel Security team developed processes to minimize contact while providing essential services. Security leadership worked with Kirtland Air Force Base to establish a waiver process for the 14-day quarantine requirement so mission essential work could continue, while Physical and Technical Security facilitated accurate contact tracing at Sandia sites. Security also played a key role in the early deployment of COVID-19-safe workplace practices. (4000)

New Mexico site capacity planning

To fully understand the Labs’ growth constraints and create a model for the future, a study examined utilities, parking, information technology infrastructure and office space, to holistically evaluate overall capacity. Following the onset of COVID-19, the team pivoted to study options for a continued telecommuting posture for some employee populations. This included examining several potential strategies, incorporating touchdown space for telecommuters, reducing the overall leased space footprint, and/or decommissioning and demolishing modular or other substandard facilities. (4000)

Building 972
Building 972 is one of the new buildings completed during the pandemic.

Project execution continues during pandemic

Despite the numerous challenges and daily changes due to COVID-19, Sandia’s Projects team continued construction with limited impacts to baseline costs and schedules and executed $208 million in projects in FY20. Construction managers, project managers, inspectors and safety engineers remained on-site to ensure mission essential projects continued and daily changes were managed, coordinated and well understood. Even with the reduction of other project support personnel that would normally be on-site, exceptional teaming resulted in the continuation of significant construction activities. (4000, 8000)

Centralized Space Management backfill strategy

The Sandia/NM Centralized Space Management team led the development of a Labs-level strategy to accommodate growth for both on- and off-site locations. Following significant workforce growth in late FY18 and throughout FY19 due to the increased portfolio of mission work, the team worked attentively to optimize a space footprint that led to an integrated plan to migrate staff to locations that aligned with their security needs and co-located them to critical assets and synergistic partners. (4000)

The Eubank Gate
The Eubank Gate project kicked off in October 2019.

Eubank Gate project completion

The 12-month construction project on Kirtland Air Force Base was completed ahead of schedule and under budget with significant collaboration among the NNSA Sandia Field Office, Kirtland and Sandia/NM. The completed project will improve security on the military base and provide access to the new NNSA Albuquerque Complex. (4000)