Global advisory committees and review teams also provided guidance and
direction that helped the team identify potential problems with the design—and
mitigate those risks before they were realized. For instance, advisory committee
experts knew the specifications for the giant magnets, some more than 13 feet
( 3.96 meters) long and weighing more than 6,000 pounds ( 2,722 kilograms),
would be tough for suppliers to deliver. This led the project team to contract
five magnet vendors, which reduced their reliance on any single manufacturer,
says Diane Hatton, director of planning, performance and quality management,
Brookhaven National Laboratory.
“This gave us flexibility to increase some of those contracts or decrease others,
depending on how successful those suppliers were,” she says. “We sent some
of our technical staff out to live with those
manufacturers during hard times where they
The team wanted each part of the facility
to be state-of-the-art when it came online, so
it also delayed some decisions that could be
impacted by future technical advances. For
instance, Ms. Hatton says the team waited
as long as possible to make decisions about
computing—so systems would be current
when the project closed.
“When we started the project in 2005, we didn’t know what the requirements
were necessarily going to be in 2015,” she says.
MORE FOR THE MONEY
Working with industry experts helped the project team to create a comprehensive risk registry that could be managed proactively throughout the process.
At the same time, the scientific advisory group helped the team create a list of
priority add-ons they’d like to see in the scope if additional funds became available, Ms. Hatton says.
“We kept a list of the items that would be future scope enhancements,” she
says. “So when funds became available because we reduced risk, we had a list
ready to go with things that could be added.”
The facility’s space for 60 beamlines, or research stations, was near the top
of this list. The initial scope only covered the construction of six of the US$20
million beamlines. But provisions for all 60 were fully designed at the outset,
making it possible to incorporate more as contingency budgets were released.
When the project closed, the team had completed seven beamlines and por-
tions of an eighth.
Under the Microscope
2005: Project need
approved by Department of
2008: Performance baseline
approved by DOE
2009: Construction begins
2010: All construction
2011: Electron accelerator
2013: Accelerator’s booster
2014: Storage ring
January 2015: Project
completed six months ahead
February 2015: Dedication
ceremony held with U.S.
Secretary of Energy and
June 2015: Operations
“When we started
the project in 2005,
we didn’t know what
going to be in 2015.”
—Diane Hatton, Brookhaven National
Laboratory, Upton, New York, USA
NSLS-II dedication ceremony
in February 2015