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November 07, 2023 | Tom Ballard

ORNL recognizes its best

Twenty-four individuals and teams were honored during the lab's recent Awards Night event at The Venue at Lenoir City.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s (ORNL) Michael McGuire has received the “Director’s Award for Outstanding Individual Accomplishment in Science and Technology” and the “Distinguished Researcher Award” for his leadership and contributions to materials research.

He was one of  24 individuals and teams honored during the lab’s recent Awards Night event at The Venue at Lenoir City. The awards recognize excellence in research, operations, and community engagement, and newly arrived ORNL Director Stephen Streiffer concluded the event by presenting four Director’s Awards selected from among those honorees.

“Michael’s achievements represent ORNL’s standing as one of the world’s foremost centers for materials research,” Streiffer said. “Materials are key to solving the most difficult challenges in energy and the environment, as well as providing the basis for technical and economic progress that improves the lives of people all over the globe. Basic science investigations exemplified by Michael’s work establish the pathways to these advances.”

McGuire was cited “for leadership and continued contributions to our understanding of complex materials through the synthesis and characterization of new correlated electron materials important to clean energy technologies.” He leads the Correlated Electron Materials group in the Materials Science and Technology Division. His research involves using crystal growth, solid state chemistry, and metallurgical synthesis techniques, crystallographic studies, and physical property measurements to explore structure-property relationships in complex materials, with particular emphasis on magnetism.

Streiffer also presented Director’s Awards to two teams, for operational performance and continuous improvement, and to the night’s science communicator awardee.

  • The “Director’s Award for Outstanding Team Accomplishment in Operational Performance” went to a multidisciplinary team that developed Hazardous Energy Control Workshops at ORNL and other Battelle-affiliated laboratories. Team members came from ORNL’s Environment, Safety, Health and Quality; Facilities and Operations; and Neutron Science directorates. The team included co-leaders Scot Winningham and Darren Norris, along with Dustyn Copeland, Matthew Mehlhorn, Kristin Zaloudek, John Gutman, Stephen Welch, Jordan Emch, Scott Crowe, Jessica Langstaff, Jason McLemore, Brandy Milun, Corey Spradlin, and William Wheat.
  • A team from the Neutron Sciences Directorate received a “Director’s Award for Outstanding Team Accomplishment in Continuous Improvement” for their work to improve the performance of the Spallation Neutron Source’s mercury target. Those honored are team leader Mark Lyttle with Leonard Dial, Rex Hogan, Hao Jiang, Kevin Johns, Yun Liu, David McClintock, Mitchell McPeters, Peter Rosenblad, Robert Sangrey, and Drew Winder.
  • Clarice Phelps, an engineer in the Radioisotope Science and Technology Division, received the “Director’s Award for Outstanding Individual Accomplishment in Operations.” She won this year’s science communicator award “for outstanding efforts to communicate to the public the importance of nuclear science and engineering, and to engage with historically underrepresented communities.”

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