Environmental Measurements Laboratory
The Environmental Measurements Laboratory (EML), a
United Statesgovernment-owned, government-operated laboratory, is part of the Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate of the Department of Homeland Security(DHS).
A descendant of the
Manhattan Project, EML was established in 1947. The Laboratory advances and applies the science and technology required for preventing, protecting against, and responding to radiological and nuclear events in the service of homeland and national security.
EML's current programs focus on issues associated with environmental
radiationand radioactivity. Specifically, EML provides DHS with environmental radiation and radioactivity measurements in the laboratory or field, technology development and evaluation, personnel training, instrument calibration, performance testing, data management, and data quality assurance.
The EML is located at the Federal Office Building at 201 Varick Street,
New York City, New York.
EML traces its roots to the Medical Division of the Manhattan Project during and after World War II. The Division focused on industrial hygiene, radiation protection and safety. In 1946, the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) was created. The lab was renamed the Health and Safety Division of the AEC.
In 1953 it became the Health and Safety Laboratory, or HASL. Fallout from nuclear weapons tests became a major concern and the lab's focus shifted to measurements and assessments of fallout using a network of gummed film monitoring stations and measurements of the radioactivity levels in various food products. In the 1950's and 1960's, the worldwide sampling network was expanded considerably to include soil and water samples, air filter samples at the surface and in the stratosphere, biological samples, and measurements of wet and dry fallout.
HASL acquired a reputation as the world leader in environmental radiation measurements. The HASL Procedures Manual became the standard for environmental radiation measurement techniques. In the 1960's, the lab began taking measurements of radon in mines to assess the health risks of miners. In the 1970's, the lab's worldwide sampling programs were expanded to include non-nuclear pollutants.
When the Atomic Energy Commission was abolished in 1975, the Health and Safety Laboratory became part of the Energy Research and Development Administration. In 1977, the Energy Research and Development Administration was absorbed by the Department of Energy, and the Health and Safety Laboratory changed its name to the Environmental Measurements Laboratory (EML).
In the 1970's, the lab performed extensive radiation transport and dosimetry studies in and around nuclear facilities, and established the Quality Assurance Program for environmental dosimeters and radioanalytical measurements. The lab also did extensive dose reconstructions for nuclear weapons tests, and studied radon in homes. After the Three-Mile Island and Chernobyl accidents, the lab took immediate measurements providing the ability to accurately and comprehensively reconstruct the environmental contamination resulting from these incidents.
In 1997, the lab underwent a major change of focus when it moved from the DOE Office of Energy Research to the Office of Environmental Management. EML's primary focus was to support environmental monitoring, decommissioning, decontamination, and remediation efforts. Cleanup efforts across the DOE complex required a wide range of low-level radiation and radioactivity assessments that were used in contaminant characterization studies, remediation control guidance, final status surveys, and long-term stewardship. EML served as an interface between DOE and contractor staff on technical issues that impact on remediation goals and strategies. This included providing consultation on radiation survey planning, data quality objectives, background levels of radionuclides, radiation dose models, environmental transport, measurement techniques, and data assessment. EML itself also performed environmental measurements when independent expert assessments were needed, as in the case of demonstration surveys, comparability studies, continuous monitoring for ES&H impact, and retrospective dosimetry studies. EML also continued its worldwide monitoring network and the development of instruments in support of non-proliferation activities.
In 2002, President Bush signed legislation to create a new Cabinet Department of Homeland Security. The Environmental Measurements Laboratory became a part of the Department of Homeland Security under the Science and Technology Directorate. It uses expertise in radiation and radioactivity measurements to improve the science and technology available to responders.
A point of trivia is that EML maintains a radiation sensor on the roof of the building on Varick Street.
* [http://www.eml.st.dhs.gov/ Environmental Measurements Laboratory]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory — (EMSL, (pronounced em zul)) is a national scientific user facility at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington. EMSL is a 224,463 square foot facility that provides integrated experimental and computational resources for… … Wikipedia
Environmental impact of nuclear power — Nuclear power activities involving the environment; mining, enrichment, generation and geological disposal. The environmental impact of nuclear power results from the nuclear fuel cycle, operation, and the effects of nuclear accidents. The… … Wikipedia
National Urban Security Technology Laboratory — (NUSTL) is a United States government owned, government operated laboratory, part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science Technology Directorate. The NUSTL is located in the Federal Office Building at 201 Varick Street in the Hudson… … Wikipedia
List of environmental topics (E) — This is a list of environmental topics. They relate to the effect of human activity on the environment.*(E grass: see) Miscanthus (see biofuel under Uses) *E waste (electronic waste) *(E10: see) common alcohol fuel mixtures *(E15: see) common… … Wikipedia
Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences — The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) is a research institute that is sponsored jointly by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)/Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) and the… … Wikipedia
Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory — Established 1 February 1961 (1 February 1961) Research Type … Wikipedia
Santa Susana Field Laboratory — The Santa Susana Field Laboratory (SSFL) is a once prolific rocket and nuclear reactor test facility located convert|30|mi|km|0 north of downtown Los Angeles, California. SSFL continues to operate today, serving as a research facility for The… … Wikipedia
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory — Infobox Laboratory name = Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory motto = Science in the national interest established = 1952 by the University of California director = George H. Miller city = Livermore, California budget = US$1.6 billion type =… … Wikipedia
Mars Science Laboratory — mission 2011 concept artwork Operator NASA Major contractors Boeing Lockheed Martin … Wikipedia
National Exposure Research Laboratory — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency s National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL) is a national laboratory that conducts research and development to find improved methods, measurements, and models to assess and predict exposures of humans… … Wikipedia