U.S. national security relies upon timely response to changes in the global environment. An increasing number of nations possess the ability to inflict significant harm on the U.S., requiring focused expertise in national security to address these threats.
The resilience and responsiveness of the U.S. national security enterprise require connection with the powerful thought leadership found in U.S. universities, government, non-governmental organizations and national laboratories. The Joint Center for Resilient National Security is that connection point of engagement for key contributors in areas of responsibility and strategic interest to the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
The mission of the Joint Center for Resilient National Security (JCRNS) is to develop and enhance national security capabilities between U.S. Department of Energy laboratories and U.S. universities supporting Los Alamos National Laboratory. The JCRNS will accomplish its mission through a series of programs that will develop over time.
Nuclear Security Enterprise Program (NSEP): A program to introduce select university faculty annually to the nuclear security enterprise. Participants are chosen from universities across the U.S. based on knowledge, skills, abilities, interests and potential to obtain security clearances. The program includes site visits, presentations and discussions. Upon completion, individuals may be assigned to the Joint Research and Development Program and Academic Working Group Program.
Joint Research and Development Program (JRAD): A program of applied research and development executed by collaborative teams of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) staff, U.S. university faculty, and staff from other laboratories focused on areas of strategic importance to the National Nuclear Security Administration. The JRAD will develop an academic bench of top U.S. university faculty who possess a deep understanding of national security problems and issues faced by LANL and other national security labs. These faculty members will serve as resources for national labs in times of need, and their research programs will produce graduates well prepared for national lab careers. Research and development areas will be chosen by Joint Center for Resilient National Security leaders and will be aligned with Academic Working Group topics.
The center’s topical areas will evolve as mission needs and university capabilities develop. Current lab-university collaborations supporting the LANL mission include:
- Time-dependent neutronics
- Lead by Anil Prinja (U. New Mexico) and Cory Ahrens (LANL)
- Lead by Jim Morel (TAMUS) and Rob Lowrie (LANL)
- Materials in extreme environments
- Actinide chemistry
- High energy density science
- Lead by Carolyn Kuranz (U. Michigan) and Sean Finnegan (LANL)
Academic Working Group Program (AWOG): A program to provide forums for deep exploration into key topics and problems related to LANL national security missions. Similar to Joint Working Groups that have provided forums for multi-lab explorations for many decades, AWOG meetings may include unclassified sessions, classified sessions, or both. AWOG problems will be chosen by Joint Center for Resilient National Security leaders and will be aligned with Joint Research and Development Program topical areas.