Photo of a sign declaring SRS a historical landmark (Credit: Savannah River Nuclear Solutions)
Aiken, SC -
Joining a list that includes structures like the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower, the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site has officially been named as a Historical Landmark by ASM International, the professional society for materials science and manufacturing.
SRS is one of only three landmarks designated from the current year’s class of nominees. ASM historical landmarks identify sites and events that have played a prominent part in the discovery, development and growth of metals and metalworking and engineered materials.
The designation became official with the presentation of a historical marker, presented by Professor Ravi Ravindran, current President of ASM International. Ravindran noted that the award recognized SRS “for advancing the materials technologies necessary to produce tritium, plutonium and other isotopes for national defense, research and medical applications.”
Ravindran cited several contributions over SRS’ history, including large scale production of aluminum-lithium alloys; production of kilogram quantities of radioactive waste glass; materials science improvements made at SRS through the U.S. tritium program; and, discovery of the neutrino, a Nobel Prize winning experiment conducted at the P Reactor.
Savannah River National Laboratory Director Dr. Terry Michalske joined Ravindran at the marker presentation, acknowledging that that the listing validated the work of people who contributed over decades of research, development and execution. This is really a tribute to the can-do spirit of a lot of people who looked at things and said ‘we can do that,’ Michalske said. “That’s as true today as it’s ever been, and it’s a fitting recognition for the quality of work that’s been done here.”
The marker will be permanently placed near the former M Area facilities, where fuel and target assemblies were once produced for the site’s production reactors.
The nomination was submitted by Dr. Elizabeth Hoffman of SRNL and Dr. Elliott Clark, formerly of SRNL, on behalf of the Savannah River Chapter of ASM. Savannah River Nuclear Solutions is a Fluor-led company whose members are Fluor Federal Services, Newport News Nuclear and Honeywell, responsible for the management and operations of the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site, including the Savannah River National Laboratory, located near Aiken, South Carolina.