Bythis time, the AEC had met all Department of Defense requirements for nuclear weapons
production and had created a huge arsenal of nuclear weapons. Accordingly, President Lyndon
B. Johnson decided to reduce nuclear materials production and presented it as a disarmament
measure in his 1964 State ofthe Union address. As a result, over the next seven years, the AEC

shut down all but one ofthe Hanford production reactors. Because the Hanfordarea was a one

industry town, the AEC also took steps to keep the area economically viable by aiming to bring
new industry and contractors into the area. It grouped these efforts into its Hanford’

diversification program. In 1964 General Electric decided to withdraw from Hanfordandthe

AEC committed to use multiple contractors at thesite.

In thefirst major moveofits Hanford diversification program, the AEC selected Battelle

Memorial Institute of Columbus, Ohio to take over operation of the Hanford Laboratories, which

were now renamed the Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL). At its inception PNL had staff of
about 1,800 and a budget of approximately $20 million.

UnderBattelle management the laboratory began to grow. From single gray barracks in
downtown Richland in 1965, PNL, in ten years, had grown to include new buildings and ~
equipment valued at $50 million. For example, in 1967 PNL began operation ofa 120 square
mile Arid Lands Ecology Reserve for the AEC. It established a Marine Research Laboratory on.
Washington's Olympic Peninsula and a research center near the University ofWashington's Seattle
campus. It built a Richland Research Complex which included a Research Operations Building, a
Physical Sciences Laboratory, a 300 seat auditorium, a Mathematics Building, an Engineering
Development Laboratory, and a Life Sciences Laboratory. In 1967 an observatory with the
largest optical telescope in the Northwest was established near Richland.
The AEC, meanwhile, had decided to build the Fast Flux Test Facility (FFTF) at Richland as part

of its Hanford diversification efforts. The FFTF was an advanced nuclear reactor which would be
used to test fuels and materials which could be used in advanced nuclear breeder reactors. PNL

was given the job of designing the FFTF and selecting engineering and construction firms to build

At the same time PNL was diversifying its research programs. The laboratory expanded its efforts
into additional biomedical, nonnuclear energy, environmental, national security, and human affairs
research. In 1969 PNL was chosen by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to
analyze lunar samples collected by the Apollo program and in 1972 PNL received lunar samples
from the Apollo 15 and 17 space missions for research. In 1972 the laboratory wona prestigious
award for developing a porous substancethat could develop a "living union" between bone and
prosthetic devices by bone ingrowth.
By 1975 PNL's workforce totaled about 1142 andits annual operating budget was little over
$25 million. By this time the AEC had been replaced by the Energy Research and Development
Administration (ERDA). Within two years ERDAhad been replaced by the Department of
Energy (DOE). PNL becamefirst an ERDAfacility in 1975 and then a DOEfacility in 1977.

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