Note to Editors: Statements from Colo. Lt. Gov. Jane Norton and Climax Molybdenum Co. – Henderson Mine, as well as a Henderson DUSEL fact sheet, follow this release. The entire proposal as well as related science images and additional information are available on the HUSEP Web site at http://nngroup.physics.sunysb.edu/husep/.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has announced that a proposal to develop a site and conceptual design for a Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL) at the Henderson Mine in Empire, Colo., was given the go-ahead. The proposal was submitted by the Henderson Underground Science and Engineering Project (HUSEP) collaboration, a national organization, in February 2005 responding to a proposal solicitation by NSF.
In April 2004, NSF announced a process of solicitations for proposals to explore the possibility of establishing in the United States what will be an unprecedented national underground facility where revolutionary discoveries and advances in science and engineering would be possible. During the past few decades, large-scale underground physics laboratories in Canada, Europe and Japan have made major discoveries in neutrino physics, but no comparable laboratories exist in the U.S at present. When established, DUSEL will allow the United States science and engineering community to re-establish leadership in underground science and engineering.
The HUSEP collaboration was formed in 2004 to establish an underground laboratory at the Henderson Mine, partly in response to the NSF’s DUSEL Initiative. HUSEP is a collaboration of University of Colorado, Boulder; Colorado School of Mines; Colorado State University; University of Nebraska, Lincoln; State University of New York at Stony Brook; Pennsylvania State University; University of Tennessee; University of Utah; Climax Molybdenum Company’s Henderson Mine; and The Arapaho Project (a non-profit community organization). The collaboration membership includes biologists, geologists, physicists, mining engineers, corporate professionals and community leaders and community members.
With today’s announcement, Colorado and South Dakota now advance to the next round of the DUSEL site selection process to compete for a federally funded underground science and engineering laboratory (hundreds of millions of dollars). The laboratory is expected to host a variety of underground experiments and will have more than a 30-year lifespan.
The proposed Colorado DUSEL would be a multidisciplinary underground research center that houses a variety of advanced experiments in physics, geoscience and bioscience. Experiments would explore the mysterious nature of neutrinos and the stability of protons that are critical in establishing a unified theory of particle physics; shed light on processes in supernovae and black hole formations; probe the secrets of life that exist deep in the earth and thereby provide crucial clues to the search for extraterrestrial life; examine the properties of the deep rock itself; and establish methods of constructing deep, large and safe underground caverns for variety of future uses.
The Henderson mine is one of the largest operating underground mines in the world. Established in the 1970s and modernized in 1999, the mine has an extensive infrastructure including high capacity rock removal, electric power, water, water treatment and communications systems needed for DUSEL construction and operation. The opportunity to share this infrastructure and benefit from the expertise of the mine operators would make the construction and operation of the laboratory highly efficient and safe. The mine owners have been enthusiastic participants in developing the Henderson DUSEL proposal. Henderson Mine is owned by the Climax Molybdenum Co., a subsidiary of the Phelps Dodge Corp.
The possibility for Colorado to host a unique national science facility has attracted generous support not only from academic institutions but also from the local community and state leadership. U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard and Congressman Mark Udall have provided letters of support and have expressed their intent to follow further developments. Newly elected U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar recently expressed his strong support.
Colorado state government has provided steadfast support for this initiative. During the last legislative session, a joint resolution of the state senate and house (SJR 05-014) in support of the Henderson DUSEL proposal enjoyed bipartisan sponsorship and received unanimous support. Gov. Bill Owens provided an unequivocal letter of support, which was included in the NSF proposal. Coordinated by Lt. Gov. Jane Norton, several state agencies have offered their support for the project, most notably the Department of Local Affairs, which provided funds to investigate economic development of Clear Creek County, and the Department of Natural Resources, which has recognized the positive impact that the project would bring to Colorado.
Over the next half year or so, the HUSEP collaboration will prepare a detailed proposal for the selection of the DUSEL finalist by NSF, which is expected to occur in 2006.
If realized, a DUSEL at Henderson will provide a bold and comprehensive science and engineering program that is expected to result in fundamental discoveries with far reaching impact in physics, geoscience and bioscience. It will also have a substantial impact on the local economy and education, and will become a magnet for prominent scientists from all over the world.
Collaboration Spokesman and National Media Contact:
Chang Kee Jung, State University of New York at Stony Brook
(631) 632-8108, firstname.lastname@example.org
Deputy Spokesman and Colorado Regional Media Contact:
Robert J. Wilson, Colorado State University
(970) 491-5033, email@example.com
Engineering Design Leader and Colorado School of Mines Contact:
Mark Kuchta, Colorado School of Mines
(303) 273-3306, mKuchta@mines.edu
Science Comm. co-chair and University of Colorado, Boulder Contact:
Eric Zimmerman, University of Colorado, Boulder
(303) 735-5338, firstname.lastname@example.org
Henderson Mine Operations Contact:
Dick Propernick, Climax Molybdenum Company
(303) 569-3221 x 1375, email@example.com
Phelps Dodge Corporation Contact:
Ken Vaughn, Phelps Dodge Corporation
(602) 366-8318, KVaughn@phelpsdodge.com
The Arapaho Project Inc. Contact:
Steve Schultz, Arapaho Project Inc.
(303) 277-3028, Steve.Schultz@coors.com
HUSEP Collaboration Official Web Site:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 22, 2005
Contact: Susan C. Smith
NORTON STATEMENT CONCERNING NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION AWARD ANNOUNCEMENT
Funds for Developing Conceptual Designs for a Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory (DUSEL) at Henderson Mine will benefit Colorado
(DENVER)-Lieutenant Governor Jane Norton issued the following statement:
"The National Science Foundation award for the Henderson Mine DUSEL project is the result of extensive public-private partnerships dedicated to expanding economic development and scientific discovery opportunities in Colorado," said Lieutenant Governor Jane E. Norton, chair of the Henderson DUSEL Executive Committee. "This effort enjoys the support of local, state and federal partners that realize the benefits it will afford Colorado, and welcomes the opportunity to advance to the next stage of the planning process. I applaud the revolutionary vision of the dedicated individuals who guided this project from initial concept toward final reality. They have been the driving force in promoting Colorado as a premier state dedicated to scientific advancement, ensuring the Henderson Mine DUSEL project emerged as a finalist in the awards process."
Jane Norton was sworn in as Colorado’s 46th Lieutenant Governor on January 13, 2003. Her responsibilities include serving as the chair of the Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs; acting as point person for the Owens Administration on health insurance reform; strengthening families by promoting adoption, early childhood care and education efforts/initiatives, mentoring and volunteerism; and serving as Colorado’s delegate to the Aerospace States Association and chair of the Colorado Space Coalition.
Climax Molybdenum Co. – Henderson Mine
July 22, 2005
"The selection of the Henderson mine site as a finalist for the deep underground laboratory is a wonderful opportunity for Colorado and for the Climax Molybdenum Co. We’re looking forward to helping develop a full proposal. We have extensive experience in underground mining and geology, and already have many of the facilities, including a large-capacity man and material shaft, that the laboratory would need. The deep underground lab would provide a solid economic base for local communities both while mining is underway and long after mining has been completed."
Henderson DUSEL Fact Sheet
What is DUSEL?
DUSEL is the Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory proposed at the Henderson Mine near Empire, Colo., by a collaboration of industry, higher education, state and local officials and community members. The proposal is in response to the second (S-2) of a series of three DUSEL solicitations by the National Science Foundation (NSF).
During the past few decades, large-scale underground physics laboratories in Canada, Europe and Japan have made major discoveries in science, including neutrino physics, but no comparable laboratories exist in the United States. The Henderson DUSEL would allow U.S. scientists and engineers to re-establish leadership in underground science and engineering.
The Henderson DUSEL would be a multidisciplinary underground research center that houses a variety of advanced experiments in physics, geosciences and the biosciences, and would have a lifespan of at least 30 years. Experiments would explore the mysterious nature of neutrinos and the stability of protons that are critical in establishing a unified theory of particle physics; shed light on processes in supernovae and black hole formation; probe the secrets of life that exist deep in the earth and provide crucial clues to the search for extraterrestrial life; examine properties of the deep rock itself; and establish methods of constructing deep, large and safe underground caverns for a variety of future uses.
The DUSEL at Henderson would provide a bold and comprehensive science and engineering program for fundamental discoveries with far reaching benefits in physics, geoscience and bioscience. It would also substantially impact the local economy and provide unique educational opportunities, as well as become a magnet for prominent scientists from throughout the world.
What is HUSEP?
HUSEP is a national organization – the Henderson Underground Science and Engineering Project collaboration – formed in 2004 to establish the Colorado DUSEL. HUSEP includes the University of Colorado-Boulder; Colorado School of Mines; Colorado State University; University of Nebraska-Lincoln; State University of New York at Stony Brook; Pennsylvania State University; University of Tennessee; University of Utah; Climax Molybdenum Co. Henderson Mine and The Arapaho Project Inc. (a non-profit community organization). Collaboration members include biologists, geologists, physicists, mining engineers, corporate professionals, community leaders and community members.
Why in Colorado?
HUSEP is developing a conceptual design and a science and engineering program for the Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory at the Henderson Mine in Empire, Colo.
The Henderson mine, one the world’s largest operating underground mines, is about 50 miles west of Denver and is easily accessible via major highways. Established in the 1970s and modernized in 1999, the mine already has an extensive infrastructure, including high capacity rock removal, electric power, water, water treatment and communications systems. The mining company owns all of the land required for DUSEL. It has environmental and mining permits required for excavation, core drilling and rock disposal; no additional excavation permits are expected to be necessary for DUSEL.
The Henderson Mine is owned by Climax Molybdenum Co., a subsidiary of the Phelps Dodge Corporation. The site owners enthusiastically support the initiative and are actively developing a plan that will demonstrate the feasibility of inter-operation of the mine and DUSEL.
The preliminary Henderson DUSEL design includes an Upper Campus, making use of existing tunnels (drifts) and cavities about 4,000 feet below the surface, for experiments requiring modest depths; several multipurpose and one very large cavern for a variety of physics experiments at a Central Campus, 5,550 feet below the peak of Harrison Mountain; areas for geoscience and bioscience experiments at 6,000 and 7,000 feet under adjacent Red Mountain (which contains the molybdenum orebody); and a Lower Campus at greater than 7,400 feet below Harrison mountain, for geological, biological and physics experiments that require extreme depth.
An essential ingredient of DUSEL is strong support from local communities, state government and academic institutions. In fact, the possibility of Henderson as a potential laboratory site was first raised by two members of the local county planning commission. Additionally, U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard, U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar, and Congressman Mark Udall have provided letters of support and have expressed their intent to follow further developments.
During the last legislative session, a joint resolution of the state senate and house (SJR 05-014) supporting the Henderson DUSEL proposal enjoyed bipartisan sponsorship and support. Gov. Bill Owens provided an unequivocal letter of support, which was included in the NSF proposal. To support the initiative, Lt. Gov. Jane Norton has coordinated the HUSEP-State of Colorado Informal Working Group. Notable among the state agency participants are the Department of Local Affairs, which provided support to Clear Creek County in support of the project, and the Department of Natural Resources, which wrote a letter of support asserting their opinion that this dual use of the Henderson mine would be beneficial to Colorado. The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade has announced plans to highlight Henderson Mine’s mining technology and DUSEL plans in the fall 2005 Colorado Tech Week.
Key DUSEL components are a variety of plans for education and public outreach.
An increasingly important role for any major scientific facility is to take advantage of its vast intellectual resources to communicate the importance and excitement of science and engineering to a broader population. The HUSEP collaboration has already begun this process by leveraging an existing outreach program – the Snowmass Area Large Time-coincidence Array (SALTA) project. Using the same instruments, the cosmic ray flux inside the Henderson mine has been measured by regional high school students and teachers. HUSEP proposes integrating SALTA with successful existing outreach programs at regional universities which will be expanded to encompass the broad range of sciences that will be investigated at Henderson DUSEL.
An anticipated visitor center at Henderson will be near major tourist destinations. The general public will have opportunities to participate in scheduled, controlled, safe and supervised tours of the underground laboratory.
HUSEP will continue to develop an in-depth conceptual design of DUSEL at Henderson that meets NSF facility requirements and to further explore the science and engineering that capitalizes on Henderson’s unique features. The results of this investigation will include proposals for near- and long-term science programs, a conceptual design and plans for facility management, international collaboration and education and outreach.
Over the next half year or so, the HUSEP collaboration will prepare a detailed report and proposal in anticipation of a competition to select the DUSEL finalist by NSF, which is expected to occur in 2006.