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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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Brookhaven laboratories up for grabs in management contract

The U.S. Department of Energy announced on April 18 that it would begin accepting bids for the management contract for the Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), currently co-operated by the Research Foundation for The State University of New York on behalf of Stony Brook University.

Brookhaven Science Associates (BSA), a limited liability corporation formed to operate the lab as a 50-50 partnership between the Research Foundation for SUNY and the non-profit research foundation Battelle Memorial Institute, has held the contract since 1998.

“Brookhaven Science Associates will enthusiastically and aggressively compete for the Brookhaven Lab contract,” Ronald D. Townsend, chair of the BSA board, said in a press release following the announcement.

BSA’s current contract will expire on Jan. 4, 2015. It is not clear if any other organizations will bid on the new contract.

Stony Brook is the largest academic user of BNL, with more than 600 faculty and students carrying out research there.

The university runs a shuttle service to the lab, and Brookhaven, in addition to providing critical research facilities to the university, offers almost $50,000 in scholarships to Stony Brook students.

Before Brookhaven Science Associates, the lab was operated by Associated Universities Incorporated, sponsored by nine northeastern universities including MIT, Harvard and Yale.

It lost the contract in 1998, however, after a tritium leak that contaminated groundwater.

In a press release, the Department of Energy said, “Competition allows DOE to elicit new and innovative approaches for planning BNL’s future.”

BNL is one of 10 laboratories funded by the Department of Energy Office of Science.

It employs more than 3,000 and has an annual budget of more than $700 million.

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