Ellen Lord, chair of the Nuclear Weapons Council, said during a tour of the Energy Departmentâs Savannah River Site that the efforts to refurbish SRS facilities and drive plutonium pit production is âthe best path forward.â
DOE said Wednesday that the SRS nuclear reservation in Aiken, S.C. and the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico handle effortsÂ to meet the 2018 Nuclear Posture Reviewâs goal of producing at least 80 plutoniumÂ pits by 2030.
Lord, undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment and three-time Wash100 Award recipient, said she supports the repurposing of the SRS mixed oxide fuel fabrication facility while ensuring that LANL remains a center of excellence for plutonium research and development.
LisaÂ Gordon-Hagerty, DOE’s undersecretary for nuclear security and administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration, said that DOEÂ seeks to âensure a more responsive and flexible infrastructure to maintain the nuclear deterrent for future threats.â
John Hyten, commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, added that efforts to ramp up plutonium production will help the nuclear security enterprise âbe more responsive and resilient in order to meet our future military requirements.â
The SRS and LANL tours took place on Aug. 14 and 15, respectively.