Making an Impact
Promoting Technological Opportunities and Mentoring Tomorrow’s Scientists and Engineers
Jefferson Lab provides far-reaching benefits for our community, the Commonwealth and our nation, all while providing a unique research capability for the more than 1,500 researchers who use lab facilities to conduct experiments.
While Jefferson Lab's mission is to probe the most basic building blocks of matter in order to advance our fundamental understanding of the world around us, it also works to make the laboratory's scientific and technological advances available to benefit society.
Work conducted at Jefferson Lab makes a tangible mark in many ways beyond pure science. The lab:
• is among Hampton Roads’ largest high-tech employers;
• has a significant economic impact at the local, regional and national levels;
• promotes its technological advancements to the commercial sector; and
• mentors tomorrow's scientists and engineers.
While a scientific gem, the laboratory also is a significant economic engine for the local community, the Commonwealth and the nation. Based on a recent study, the money spent at Jefferson Lab is responsible for 4,422 jobs and generates an economic output of $679.1 M across the U.S. For the Commonwealth of Virginia, the cumulative impact totals $271.1 M in output and 2,200 jobs, and for Hampton Roads, Jefferson Lab creates an economic benefit of $217 .6M and 1,968 jobs.
Lab scientists and engineers have been awarded more than 150 patents, with many more patents pending and invention disclosures under review. The patents include advancements ranging from superconducting radiofrequency, the technology used to accelerate our electron beam; to cryogenics and particle detectors. These could be used in isotope production, life sciences, materials sciences for commercial or industrial purposes, as well as medical imaging and developing specialized nanomaterials.
In its first three decades, nearly 200 experiments were carried out at the lab. These experiments sharpened our understanding of the smallest bits of matter that make up our universe, brought to light new areas for research, and identified puzzling results that have prompted new ideas and experiments.
While practical uses for the results from basic research could be years or even decades away, the technological and scientific advancements being made to run experiments are bringing tangible benefits to society.