b'C H A P T E R 22J U M P I N G T H E F E N C Etheir missions, so an entrepreneurial In short, by the early 1970s the Site hadapproach to competition had to be added grown out of its role as a testing sta-to traditional political approaches. tion. It was truly a laboratory. Furthermore, it was long past due forIn this connection, a feeling had arisen N RTS scientists to push back when peo-over the years amongst Site scientists ple from Headquarters or other AEC and administrators, members of EINIC, laboratories slighted their importanceand others that the NRTS had gone far from time to time. For example, in annu-beyond the proof-testing of nuclear reac- al reports, the AEC didnt identify thetor concepts. Its nuclear safety engineer- N RTS as a laboratory and had no partic-ing research had become a national ular category to define the thing thatforce; its research in neutron physics, of was the NRTS. Obviously the NRTS global importance. The NRTS was a needed a new name. The internal orga n i- leader in radiation and environmental zation of the AEC had always made itprotection and advanced computer mod- hard to compete for funds and attentionCourtesy of Orval Hansen eling. It was a world-class innovator in during a Cold War when militaryOrval Hansen instrumentation and, despite Milton research and weapons productionandSha the labs that served those needs direct- w s shift of breeder work toHanford, in the field of breeder reactors. lyhad such strong champions. 17 N ow, because of the environmentalmonitoring and waste management Around 1974, NRTS supporters askedresearch at the old Burial Ground, the Idaho congressman Orval Hansen toBelow. Advanced battery technology developed at Site was becoming a leader in the tech- take the lead in getting the AEC com-INEL was used in a cooperative research project with nologies of waste management and missioners to designate the NRTS as athe United States Advanced Battery Consortium. r e t ri e national laboratory, a mission heva l .undertook enthusiastically. Elected in1968, Hansen had gained a seat on theJCAE in 1971. Dixy Lee Ray becamethe chair of the AEC in 1972, appointedby President Nixon. She made internalreforms of the AEC that made herunpopular with senior members of theJCAE, entrenched interests at the AEC,and the commercial nuclear industryatrio whose close relationship had some-times had been referred to as an irontriangle. Hansen described the name-change mission.I went directly to Dixy Lee Ray, chair -man of the AEC. I proposed that inaddition to being designated as a labo -ratory that the new name includeIdaho and that it should be known asa national laboratory to give it sta -INEEL 84-464-2-821 7'