hribf_logo
home printable Archive hribf Physics Contact
   


12. Twenty-Fifth Year Celebration of the JIHIR and JIHIR Expansion
(C. R. Bingham)

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Joint Institute for Heavy Ion Research. It also marks a time of significant growth of the JIHIR building to accommodate the nuclear theory program in support of HRIBF, and in particular to provide a home for theory visitors to Oak Ridge as part of the Japan-U.S. Theory Institute for Physics with Exotic Nuclei (JUSTIPEN). On January 23 a number of friends of the JIHIR met in the auditorium of the JIHIR to recount and celebrate some of the accomplishments of the institute and to announce the eminent construction of a new eight-office addition to the building. This celebration was billed as a ceremonial session of the JUSTIPEN workshop meeting at the JIHIR on January 23-25, thus making it possible for many of the Japanese participants to join in the celebration of the groundbreaking event.

The JIHIR supports heavy-ion research at the Holifield Radioactive Ion Beam Facility. The Institute houses an intellectual center in the field of heavy-ion research, offering workshops, support for meetings and conferences, and physical accommodations to long- and short-term visiting scientists conducting research related to the Holifield facility. JIHIR operates under an agreement between The University of Tennessee, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Vanderbilt University, fulfilling goals of mutual benefit to sponsors and participants. The Institute includes a dormitory facility for use of people conducting research at the Holifield Facility and other short-term visitors.

Two of the founders of the JIHIR, Professors Joseph Hamilton from Vanderbilt and Lee Riedinger from UT Knoxville, were on hand for the celebration to revive some memories of the establishment of the first joint institute at ORNL, the dream of full cooperation of our university and laboratory scientists in the pursuit of forefront nuclear research, and some of the obstacles encountered in building a university building on DOE land. They also discussed many of the accomplishments of the JIHIR in the first 25 years of work and some of the lasting effects of those endeavors. The JIHIR is composed of two parts: the dormitory building, owned by ORNL, was built first with $239K from ORNL, $100K from UT and $100K from Vanderbilt, and the office part owned by UT was built with $350K from the State of Tennessee and $44K from UNISOR/ORAU to provide office space for the UNISOR (UNIRIB) collaboration. Soon after the second building was completed in 1984 the Science Alliance (a state-funded center of excellence at UT) was established, with the JIHIR being one of its cornerstones. The operating budget of the JIHIR has profited greatly from the continuing support of the Science Alliance (~$160K/year) and funds from the ORNL Physics Division and Vanderbilt University over the intervening years.

In his short talk, Lee Riedinger listed five areas of significant accomplishments of the JIHIR.

1. Support of visitors to work at HRIBF and on theory

Full or partial support is provided to approximately 100 guests each year. Guests conduct research in nuclear structure theory as part of the experimental program at the HRIBF; participate in cooperative experimental research at the HRIBF; help plan the experimental program at the HRIBF and other radioactive ion-beam accelerator facilities around the world; and work with the HRIBF, university, and UNIRIB research teams to upgrade, design, and construct complementary instrumentation housed in the accelerator facility. Over 25 years the JIHIR has hosted around 1200 different people, and some of these have participated via multiple visits. This is the most important activity of the JIHIR.

2. Development of Nuclear Structure Theory

One of the early goals of the JIHIR was to establish a strong nuclear theory group in support of Holifield-type experiments, especially in the realm of nuclear structure. The visitors program of the Institute filled the bill in attracting some of the world's leading structure theorists to Oak Ridge for both short- and long-term visits. Important theories relating to nuclei at extreme values of angular momentum and exotic nuclei with a proton/neutron ratio very different than for stable nuclei were developed through the visitors program. Best of all, one of our early long-term visitors, Witek Nazarewicz, was persuaded to stay here, becoming the root of the impressive nuclear structure group presently working in permanent positions at UT/ORNL.

3. Organization of Workshops and Conferences

A key activity of the JIHIR is to bring together people to discuss the most important new directions in heavy-ion physics. Our own conference rooms have been used routinely for small and intermediate sized workshops and conferences, many leading to the development of new collaborations to pursue research at HRIBF. We have organized or helped to organize other conferences to highlight the exciting results in the broad field of nuclear science, and these sometimes must meet in other places with better conference facilities. Many of the conferences are billed as international conferences; and because of the widespread interest in nuclear structure, even the small workshops often involve participants from several countries. In the last 25 years, the JIHIR has organized and/or sponsored over 100 conferences and workshops, attended by about 4500 people.

4. Development of experiments at HRIBF

The JIHIR has played a significant role in the development of the HRIBF into the successful radioactive ion beam facility that it is today. In the decade starting in 1984, the State of Tennessee, UT, and Vanderbilt provided around $1.6M for the construction of key pieces of detection equipment at Holifield. During the last decade less capital funds were delegated to this process, but through the JIHIR visitor program, many of the world's best experimental physicists have been brought to HRIBF to guide and work on new developing experimental equipment.

5. Development of people resources

An important outcome of the JIHIR visitors program has been to attract and help develop important programs in nuclear physics and astrophysics. Witek Nazarewicz and Anthony Mezzacappa are two prime examples of leading scientists aided in their formative years at UT and ORNL, but no doubt several other individuals have been helped to become established in their areas of expertise as permanent members of the science community revolving around the Holifield facility.

The newest major accomplishment of the JIHIR has been to obtain funding to expand the second building to include eight additional offices to house theory visitors. This new wing of the building will become the home of JUSTIPEN, providing a place for longer-term Japanese visitors to work while in Oak Ridge. The plans for the new wing have been completed and a contract for the building has been negotiated. The building is funded by a state appropriation of $250K and contributions of $137.5K from UT/UT Knoxville, $75K from ORNL, and $37.5K from Vanderbilt University. At the ceremonial session, Drs. Sidney Coon from DOE, David Dean from ORNL, and Takaharu Otsuka from Tokyo University discussed the importance of the JUSTIPEN collaboration in the development of physics of exotic nuclei in support of experimental programs in Riken and Oak Ridge.

The ceremonial session was concluded with congratulatory comments from Dr. Jan Simek, Interim Chancellor of UT Knoxville, Dr. David Milhorn, Executive Vice President of UT, and Dr. James Roberto, Deputy Director for Science and Technology at ORNL. Following the session, a lunch was served in the atrium of the Joint Institute for Computational Science. Dr. Roberto addressed the luncheon affirming the role of the JIHIR in providing a model to form the four new ORNL/UT joint institutes and gave a status report on the most important new developments at ORNL.

A more complete description of the work of the JIHIR can be found at the website of the Joint Institute.

Figure 12-1: Participants in the Ceremonial Session: Lee Riedinger, UT Knoxville; Jim Roberto, Deputy Director of Science and Technology, ORNL; Sidney Coon, Program Manager for Theory, Office of Nuclear Physics, Department of Energ; Joe Hamilton, Vanderbilt; Jan Simek, Interim Chancellor, UT Knoxvill; David Millhorn, Executive Vice President, UT; Carrol Bingham, UT Knoxville; Takaharu Otsuka, University of Tokyo and managing director of JUSTIPEN; Witek Nazarewicz, UT Knoxville/ORNL; and David Dean, ORNL and associate director of JUSTIPEN.




Home printable Archive hribf Physics ornl contact