New Schedule, Budget Set for Ignition Facility
US Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson presented his plan for the National Ignition Facility at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, Calif. The Department of Energy will increase funding for the project by $95 million in fiscal 2001 and by $100 million to $150 million in 2002. Completion of the laser facility is slated for 2008, four years later than originally planned.
Richardson stressed that the science of the inertial fusion project, plagued by management and budgetary problems, remains sound. He said that it is essential to the Stockpile Stewardship Program, which will study the design of thermonuclear weapons without underground testing.
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