Analysis, Fermilab budget: Good news and bad

The proposed fiscal 2009 budget unveiled last week would restore funding for most physical science programs hurt by the inability for the U.S. legislative and executive branches to agree on a federal budget.

02/13/2008


Batavia, IL — The proposed fiscal 2009 budget that President Bush unveiled last week would restore funding for most physical science programs hurt by the inability for the U.S. legislative and executive branches to agree on a federal budget. (Prior Control Engineering coverage includes: Budget cut impacts: Fermilab looks at options, 125 fewer people Fermilab responds to budget cuts: Time off without pay .)

Instead of having a realistic budget, the U.S. government has been funded by “continuing resolutions” that have effectively frozen spending at 2006 levels. The latest such resolution, in December 2007, triggered a furlough program at America’s premier high-energy physics laboratory,

Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab)

and forced lab administrators to eye possible staff cuts. The bad news is that the proposed budget will be too late for some scientists: Fermilab director Pier Oddone announced that layoffs will proceed.
“Today I must give you some difficult news,” Oddone announced in his “Director’s Corner” column for Feb. 5 in the lab’s newsletter Fermilab Today .

“To fit within the FY08 budget and to prepare for the likely extension of the FY08 level into the next fiscal year, I expect to proceed with the layoffs we discussed in our meetings in December," Oddone said.

“The good news ,” Oddone continued, “is that the budget request for particle physics restores funding to the level before the devastating cuts in this year's omnibus bill. For Fermilab, this request, if enacted by Congress, would fund the projects that are the key to our future accelerator program….

“The bad news is that, as in FY08, there is a long way between the budget request and the actual budget for FY2009.… The situation is similar to last year's when proposed increases to the Office of Science yielded to the crunch created by the FY08 appropriations impasse.”

Under the proposed budget for fiscal year 2009, the Office of Science at the

U.S. Department of Energy

, which finances much of the physical sciences research, would receive an increase of nearly 19%, to $4.72 billion from $3.97 billion. Fermilab employees would no longer be forced to take two days of unpaid furlough each month. Design work on particle physics experiments would resume, and cutbacks in other programs might be restored. In addition, the proposed budget would allow the United States to resume contributing to ITER (originally named the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor), which is the next step toward commercially viable fusion power.

Also read, from Control Engineering :
Closing the Skills Gap

C.G. Masi , senior editor
Control Engineering News Desk
Register here and scroll down to select your choice of eNewsletters free .





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
Your leaks start here: Take a disciplined approach with your hydraulic system; U.S. presence at Hannover Messe a rousing success
Hannover Messe 2016: Taking hold of the future - Partner Country status spotlights U.S. manufacturing; Honoring manufacturing excellence: The 2015 Product of the Year Winners
Inside IIoT: How technology, strategy can improve your operation; Dry media or web scrubber?; Six steps to design a PM program
Getting to the bottom of subsea repairs: Older pipelines need more attention, and operators need a repair strategy; OTC preview; Offshore production difficult - and crucial
Digital oilfields: Integrated HMI/SCADA systems enable smarter data acquisition; Real-world impact of simulation; Electric actuator technology prospers in production fields
Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Warehouse winter comfort: The HTHV solution; Cooling with natural gas; Plastics industry booming
Managing automation upgrades, retrofits; Making technical, business sense; Ensuring network cyber security
Designing generator systems; Using online commissioning tools; Selective coordination best practices

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.
This article collection contains several articles on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and how it is transforming manufacturing.
This article collection contains several articles on strategic maintenance and understanding all the parts of your plant.
click me