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New Laboratory Opens at Aiken County's Research Campus
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AIKEN, S.C. (Dec. 5, 2001) – Attesting to the benefits of partnership and cooperation, representatives from Aiken County, U.S. Department of Energy and Westinghouse Savannah River Company joined today to officially open the Aiken County Technology Laboratory at the County's Savannah River Research Campus. This new lab building will provide laboratory facilities for approximately 50 employees of the Savannah River Technology Center, the Savannah River Site's applied research and development laboratory.

Tim Dangerfield of the Aiken Edgefield Economic Development Partnership said that "Aiken County stands at the threshold and is opening the door to a new world of technology. This ribbon cutting is an excellent example of innovation and cooperation at work, and the benefits of this new facility to the state of South Carolina and the nation have yet to be realized."

In January of this year, Aiken County announced that a lease had been signed with WSRC to provide lab facilities for parts of SRTC's Environmental Biotechnology and Waste Treatment Technology groups. Construction of the new building is now complete, and the employees have moved in.

WSRC President Bob Pedde called the lease with the county a "win-win agreement" benefiting both the Savannah River Site and Aiken County. SRTC Director Dr. Susan Wood said that the arrangement provides "world-class labs worthy of the world-class work performed by SRTC researchers and technicians."

Ronnie Young, chair of the Aiken County Council, said, "The dream that the research park could become a gateway to technology is being realized through the cooperative efforts of the citizens of Aiken County, Aiken County Council, and the Savannah River Technology Center."

ACTL's location adjacent to SRS is one of the attractions of the new facility, according to Dr. Wood. The new building is actually closer to SRTC's main building than were the old on-site facilities that ACTL replaces. Previously, the work that is now to be performed there took place at SRS' "TNX" area, located on the bank of the Savannah River. TNX, one of the first two SRS facilities to be finished and put into operation, had over the years housed a wide variety of semi-works and pilot scale development work in support of site missions, and in recent years had been home to SRTC's Environmental Biotechnology Section and part of SRTC's Waste Treatment Technology Department. The facility's age, size and condition made it necessary to shut it down and find or build new laboratories for this work.

No classified work and no work with radioactive materials will take place at the new facility.

Media contact: Will Callicott (803-725-3786 or will.callicott@srnl.doe.gov) or Angeline French (803-725-2854 or angeline.french@srnl.doe.gov) at SRNL.

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