Brookhaven National Laboratory will use $30 million in the federal spending bill signed into law Friday toward renovating a building for physicists to collect and process scientific data from Switzerland, Sen. Chuck Schumer announced Friday.
The spending bill includes more than $6 billion for the federal Office of Science, which also supports BNL’s National Synchrotron Light Source II and the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider.
The renovations to the old National Synchrotron Light Source building on the lab’s Upton campus, estimated to cost a total of $75 million, will increase research space for computing and data storage.
Schumer said the building will serve as the U.S. hub for receiving, storing and processing data from the Large Hadron Collidor in Switzerland.
The funding comes at a critical time for BNL, home to nearly 3,000 jobs. The lab reduced its workforce by 175 jobs last year through a voluntary buyout program.
Schumer called the new funding “a massive investment” that “will help BNL carry out critical projects that help put Long Island on the map as a global leader in research.” He said the lab creates jobs through inventions that are commercialized by startup businesses.
Sen. Kristen Gillibrand said, “Scientists are drawn to Brookhaven to conduct cutting-edge research that is vital to our nation’s homeland security, creates thousands of good-paying jobs, local jobs for the Long Island economy.” She said visiting scientists spend money in local hotels, shops and other retail establishments.
New York Democrats Schumer and Gillibrand have been joined in recent years by the Island’s House members to fight for continued funding forBNL is run by Brookhaven Science Associates, a partnership of Stony Brook University and the nonprofit science organization Battelle.
Schumer said Friday the spending bill increases total funding for the federal science office by $867 million.
BNL director Doon Gibbs said the spending bill “includes stable or increased funding across Brookhaven's programs and facilities. The bill is a strong vote of confidence in our science, energy, and national security mission areas.”