R&D

After reports last year of cost overruns and mismanagement in construction of the National Ignition Facility (NIF), DOE was forced to restructure the project. Congress, in its FY 2000 appropriations bill, demanded new cost and schedule estimates for NIF.

15 Jun 2000

During the recently-completed U.S.-Russian summit in Moscow, the two countries announced a formal agreement on disposal of excess nuclear weapons-grade plutonium. The agreement was announced in a joint statement on June 4.

13 Jun 2000

NRC Report Sets Priorities An important National Research Council report predicts major advances in understanding the universe in the coming decade, but cautions that changes are needed in the federal government's support of astronomy and astrophysics. The Next Generation Space Telescope, with 100 times the sensitivity of the Hubble Space Telescope, is given the highest priority in this report that ranked astronomical research and instrumentation for this decade.

8 Jun 2000

Earlier this year, the Council of the American Astronomical Society issued the following open letter, which appeared in this month's AAS Newsletter. The impetus for this statement was the Kansas State Board of Education decision on the teaching of evolution. This open letter was signed by AAS President Robert D. Gehrz.

"To Whom It May Concern:

6 Jun 2000

Physics, Materials, Astronomy, Environmental Sciences As explained in FYI #92, the National Science Board has released the report, "Science and Engineering Indicators 2000." Produced by the Directorate for Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences of the National Science Foundation, this two-volume set contains analysis and thousands of statistics on science and engineering in the United States and, in some cases, other nations.

31 Aug 2000

"In a world being transformed by technology, good science is vital to good diplomacy." --- Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

23 May 2000

Test Amendment Last week, the Senate voted 52-48 against an amendment offered by Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL), to require "operationally- realistic testing against countermeasures for national missile defense." This amendment to the defense authorization act was supported by all Senate Democrats and three Republicans: Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine and James Jeffords of Vermont.

21 Jul 2000

In April, the Council of the American Physical Society adopted a statement regarding the technical feasibility of the Clinton Administration's proposed National Missile Defense (NMD) system.

16 May 2000

A Funding Retrospective "After many years in existence, the program has not produced a body of evidence to overcome those fundamental questions about whether the program should exist in the first place.... With many other priorities facing the Committee and funding constraints as they are, the Committee concludes that funding would be better spent on higher priority programs and recommends that the ATP program be terminated."

7 Jul 2000

Press Briefing by Neal Lane and Rita Colwell OSTP Director Neal Lane and NSF Director Rita Colwell accompanied President Clinton on Air Force One last week to Los Angeles and the California Institute of Technology. At Cal Tech, the President announced his intention to request a significant increase in FY 2001 research funding (see FYI #8.) Lane and Colwell made the following remarks while the plane was en route to Los Angeles:

LANE ON NANOTECHNOLOGY:

1 Feb 2000

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