Home » Joint agreement will allow WKU to use Oak Ridge National Laboratory facilities

Joint agreement will allow WKU to use Oak Ridge National Laboratory facilities

Will provide new research opportunities

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (Sept. 7, 2016) — Western Kentucky University and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have formed a partnership that will allow researchers and students to use both facilities.

The agreement between WKU and UT-Battelle, which manages ORNL for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science, will provide new opportunities for research for faculty, said Dr. Cheryl Davis, Interim Associate Provost for Research and Creative Activity at WKU.

“The joint faculty agreement provides opportunities for WKU faculty to establish exciting collaborations and to pursue joint appointments with one of the top research facilities in the world,” she said. “We are also very excited about the prospect of research scientists at ORNL pursuing joint faculty appointments with WKU.”

Dr. Cate Webb, Associate Dean in the Ogden College of Science and Engineering, said WKU students and faculty have long benefited from ORNL’s extensive research facilities. WKU now houses the only publicly available large chamber scanning electron microscope in the U.S., originally located at ORNL, in its NOVA Center in the Center for Research and Development.

“This was a direct result of a visit of a faculty member in Physics and Astronomy with one of his research students to develop a research collaboration with a scientist at Oak Ridge,” Webb said. “Many Research I universities wanted to acquire the LC-SEM, which has been used to study such diverse objects as fossils, sports equipment, engine parts and turbine blades without destroying the sample.

“To now have the opportunity to expand our collaboration with Oak Ridge by appointing Oak Ridge scientists as faculty members will ensure that productive partnerships and collaborations will continue to grow,” Webb said.

At ORNL, scientists and engineers conduct world-class research across a wide range of disciplines, including advanced materials science, clean energy, neutron science, nuclear science and supercomputing and computation. The DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the U.S.