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The LANL Institutes

NSEC has formed several institutes, each with a partner university or consortia of universities. The formation of these institutes serves the need for LANL to recruit new staff and provide educational opportunities that will enhance retention at the Laboratory. This is accomplished by:

  • Developing long-term collaborative relationships with universities whose research interests are important to the Laboratory.
  • Sponsoring, partnering with, and funding university professors and students in areas that are important to meet Laboratory objectives.
  • Establishing relationships with students working in these research areas and recruiting them to the Laboratory upon graduation where they can continue their work and help the Laboratory to fulfill is objectives.
  • Instituting educational programs to provide Laboratory personnel with specific knowledge and skills that make them more effective in completing projects that meet Laboratory objectives.

Institute for Advanced Studies

The New Mexico Consortium's (NMC) Institute for Advanced Studies is the newest of the five academically-lead institutes within LANL. It was formed in 2006 under a Teaming Agreement between the NMC and Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS, LLC), which operates LANL. The New Mexico Consortium consists of the University of New Mexico, New Mexico State University, and New Mexico Tech.

More about the IAS...

The Engineering Institute

The Engineering Institute is a collaboration between LANL and the University of California at San Diego (UCSD) Jacobs School of Engineering whose mission is to develop a comprehensive approach for 1) conducting mission-driven, multidisciplinary engineering research and 2) recruiting, revitalization and retention of the current and future staff necessary to support LANL's stockpile stewardship responsibilities. The scientific thrust of the Engineering Institute is damage prognosis, a multidisciplinary engineering science concerned with assessing the current condition and predicting the remaining life of aerospace, civil, and mechanical engineering infrastructure.

The components of the Engineering Institute are 1) the Los Alamos Dynamic Summer School (LADSS), 2) a joint LANL/UCSD degree program with a unique focus in validated simulations, structural health monitoring, and damage prognosis, 3) joint LANL/UCSD research projects, and 4) industry short courses. The LADSS addresses recruiting entry-level students into the program from across the country. The joint degree program addresses training of potential new hires and early-career staff, while also serving to retain mid-career staff who act as instructors and advisors for the early-career staff. In addition to meeting mission-driven research needs, the joint research projects also serve as a retention tool for staff at all career levels that collaborate with the UCSD faculty and students on these projects. The new technology development associated with these projects inherently provides the added benefit of a recruiting tool. Industry short courses provide an avenue of outreach to the engineering community at large as well as an additional, non-traditional form of peer review.

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Information Science and Technology Institute

An educational collaboration between LANL and multiple Universities to assist LANLL in recruiting new employees in the Computer Science area specializing in the area of large scale data management. The institute also will provide retention and revitilization activities for existing LANL staff including allowing LANL staff to pursue advanced CS degrees, take graduate level CS classes, and teach classes and seminars. Additionally, the institue will support joint LANL/University projects, especially those with potential for joint external funding.

The first Institute under the ISTI umbrella is the Institute for Scalable Scientific Data Management (ISSDM), a collaboration between LANL and UC Santa Cruz.

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Materials Design Institute

A collaboration with the University of California at Davis and LANL to promote material design.

The purpose of the Materials Design Institute (MDI) is to facilitate research and educational collaborations between Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and the University of California, Davis (UCD). While this program is a multi-year effort, this agreement continues from an initial 3-month activity between the Weapons Engineering and Manufacturing (WEM) Directorate and the College of Engineering (COE). However, owing to LANL changes, further activities will be between the Institutes Office (under the Principal Associate Directorate of Science, Technology and Engineering, PADSTE).

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The Institute for Multiscale Materials Studies

IMMS will initiate, promote, facilitate, administer and supervise educational and research activities in the area of Multiscale Materials Science and Engineering. The joint UCSB/LANL graduate educational program and its supporting research activities will be at the focus of IMMS activities. IMMS is centered at the Los Alamos Research Park in LANL and administered by LANL appointed director Alan Graham in close cooperation with UCSB appointed co-director for UCSB activities David Clarke. IMMS is considered as an extension of UCSB as far as fulfillment of residency and similar requirements. The initial emphasis of the supporting research program will be soft matter leading to multiphase, responsive, engineered materials that are used in mission-critical Los Alamos applications. In this context, responsive engineered materials are defined as soft materials that intelligently respond in a prescribed manner, to external and/or internal fields. By working together and with industry partners, LANL and UCSB will help solve problems of national importance while also supporting the mission and goals of LANS.

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