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Frequently Asked Questions

What does ORNL do?

The laboratory鈥檚 mission is to deliver scientific discoveries and technical breakthroughs that lead to advances in the areas of clean energy and global security, as well as boosting the U.S. economy.

What are the benefits of the laboratory鈥檚 research?

ORNL works with other labs, the state of Tennessee, universities and 聽industries to solve problems related to energy, advanced materials, 聽manufacturing, security and physics.

What is the lab鈥檚 annual budget?

The lab鈥檚 annual budget is about $1.65 billion.

Who runs ORNL?

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is a managed by聽UT-Battelle, LLC, for the聽U.S. Department of Energy.

Can I take a tour of ORNL facilities?

Oak Ridge National Laboratory hosts thousands of visitors every year. If you have questions about visits to the laboratory, please contact check our聽Visitor Information page聽or contact ORNL Visitor Services at聽x10visit@iphoneahf.com聽or 865.574.7199.

When was ORNL created?

ORNL was created in 1943 as part of the US government鈥檚 WWII Manhattan Project.

What was here before the laboratory was built?

Before the laboratory was built, the area was home to century-old family farms and small crossroads communities, such as Scarborough, Wheat, Robertsville and Elza. Outsiders considered the region a quaint reminder of the 19th-century frontier that time and progress had passed by.

How many people are employed at the ORNL?

ORNL has 4,400 staff members and hosts about 3,000 visiting scientists each year from over 100 different countries.

What鈥檚 the difference between ORNL, Y-12 and K-25?

The Oak Ridge Reservation is also home to two other DOE facilities:聽Y-12聽and the聽East Tennessee Technology Park, formerly known as the K-25 Site (see Wikipedia article) or the Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant. Both of these sites are completely separate entities from ORNL and are located several miles apart and managed by different contractors.