Unique facilities foster experimental science, support LANL's security mission
DARHT's electron accelerators use large, circular aluminum structures to create magnetic fields that focus and steer a stream of electrons down the length of the accelerator. Tremendous electrical energy is added along the way. When the stream of high-speed electrons exits the accelerator it is "stopped" by a tungsten target resulting in an intense burst of x-rays that are used to create digital images of mock nuclear devices as they implode.
LANL is home to a range of unique facilities, many of which serve dedicated national security missions while others are available to researchers at other laboratories, universities, and industy.
Note: If you are a researcher or collaborator interested in using a facility, continue to the User Facilities area of this website. The list of facilities below is intended to describe the capabilities within the Lab's overall footprint and is not the access point for requesting beam time, submitting proposals, or requesting DOE-designated research opportunities.
High Profile Facilities
TA-55 is the nation’s most modern plutonium science and manufacturing facility, and it is the only fully operational, full-capability plutonium facility in the nation. Thus, TA-55 supports a wide range of national security programs that involve stockpile stewardship, plutonium processing, nuclear materials stabilization, materials disposition, nuclear forensics, nuclear counter-terrorism, and nuclear energy.
The Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) Chemistry and Metallurgy Research (CMR) building supports research and experimental activities for plutonium and uranium analytical chemistry and metallurgy.
The CMR houses key capabilities for analytical chemistry, uranium processing, destructive and nondestructive analysis of nuclear materials, and actinide research, processing, and metallography. These capabilities support a number of national security programs, such as nonproliferation and nuclear safeguards, counter-proliferation, stockpile surveillance, nuclear materials technologies, and technology development for waste treatment and minimization.
The Dual-Axis Radiographic Hydrodynamic Test Facility, or DARHT, supports a critical component of LANL’s primary mission: to ensure the safety, security, and effectiveness of nuclear weapons in our nation’s stockpile. Los Alamos scientists built DARHT, the world’s most powerful x-ray machine, to analyze mockups of nuclear weapons.
The Strategic Computing Complex (SCC) at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) is a secured supercomputing facility that supports the calculation, modeling, simulation, and visualization of complex nuclear weapons data in support of the Stockpile Stewardship program.
To view models and simulations calculated by supercomputers, the SCC Data Visualization Corridor, or Vis Corridor, was developed to enable detailed visual inspection, analysis, verification, and validation of terascale computing simulations. The Vis Corridor features a powerwall theater and a five-sided CAVE Immersive Laboratory, as well as desktop visualization and collaborator capabilities.
The Los Alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE) is a premier accelerator-based multidisciplinary research facility that provides the scientific community with intense proton and neutron sources. LANSCE is a world-class Laboratory facility that ensures the viability of the nation’s nuclear deterrent. With the capability to perform experiments for both civilian and national security research, LANSCE serves an international community in conducting diverse basic and applied research.
The Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (CINT) is jointly operated with Sandia National Laboratories and provides laboratory and office space for researchers to synthesize and characterize nanostructured materials, theoretically model and simulate their performance, and integrate nanoscale materials into larger-scale systems in a flexible, clean-room environment.
Supported by the National Science Foundation, the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (NHMFL) at Los Alamos is a user facility for pulsed magnetic field and is available to qualified researchers through a proposal review process. In 2012, the NHMFL broke a 100-Tesla magnet record.
The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) provides a central location for interagency and interjurisdictional coordination and executive decision-making in support of an incident response.
The Laboratory’s Radiological Laboratory Utility Office Building (RLUOB), is its first to achieve both the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) status and LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). From its robust design to its advanced scientific equipment, RLUOB is essential to the Laboratory’s national security mission in support of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) nuclear weapons program
The Gun Site at Technical Area (TA) 8 was used during the Manhattan Project to design and test components of the uranium gun device, the weapon design known as “Little Boy,” which was exploded over Hiroshima. The buildings at TA-8 included standard proving ground facilities that were designed with a central control area for explosives operations.
V-Site is the location where the Trinity test device was assembled in 1945. Work at this significant historic site supported events that transformed the world and ushered in the Atomic Age.