SANTA FE, N.M. - U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) will travel to Los Alamos on Thursday, May 5, to highlight technology transfer between Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and private industry, and also meet with LANL's historian.
On Thursday morning, Senator Heinrich will tour the start-up tech company Descartes Labs. The company uses satellite imagery with deep learning networks to provide real-time analysis and predictions of agriculture production, such as corn harvest, and energy infrastructure development. Descartes Labs' core technology was developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory using U.S. Department of Energy's Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) funding, a strategic research and development program that is critical to maintaining the scientific vitality of the national laboratories. Descartes is a prime example of technology transfer in action and serves as a great model of a local start-up successfully attracting and retaining talent in New Mexico.
Senator Heinrich will be briefed on the company's current projects and discuss how to encourage future technology transfer from the laboratory. Senator Heinrich recently voted to pass the S. 2012, the Energy Policy Modernization Act, a bipartisan energy package in which he secured a provision to support the LDRD program. LDRD is a powerful tool that helps attract and retain top researchers from around the world to work at our national laboratories such as LANL and Sandia National Laboratories. Senator Heinrich is also working to pass S. 1259, the National Laboratory Technology Maturation Act, a bill that would allow small businesses with licensed technology from a national laboratory to apply for a voucher for up to $250,000 to purchase assistance from lab scientists and engineers to mature the technology and further develop products and services until they are market-ready or sufficiently developed to attract private investment.
In the afternoon, Senator Heinrich will meet with LANL Historian Alan Carr to discuss the laboratory's contribution to nuclear testing from the Manhattan Project until the Limited Test Ban Treaty, and specifically learn more about the nuclear test over Enewetak Atoll in the Marshall Islands, which Senator Heinrich's father witnessed firsthand during his time in the U.S. Navy.
Los Alamos - Thursday, May 5, 2016
WHAT: Tour Descartes Labs
WHEN: From 9 to 10 a.m.
WHERE: Descartes Labs, 1925 W. Trinity Drive, Los Alamos, N.M. 87544
WHAT: Meeting with LANL Historian
WHEN: From noon to 1 p.m.
WHERE: Los Alamos National Laboratory, J. Robert Oppenheimer Study Center TA-3, Bldg. 207, Rm. 209, Los Alamos, N.M. 87545