Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Ensuring the nation's safety and security.

Mission: Ensure the nation’s safety and security through applied science and technology, including security of nuclear assets; international and domestic security; and energy and environmental security.

Areas of Research: Bio-security, counterterrorism, defense, energy and environmental security, intelligence, nonproliferation, and weapons and complex integration.


Location: Livermore, California

Owned By: U.S. Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration

Managed By: Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC
(Bechtel National, University of California, Babcock & Wilcox, and URS Corporation are the LLC member companies; Battelle is an integrated subcontractor)


Commercial Innovations

ELITE™: Detecting and Identifying Explosives in Two Minutes

Discovery: In 2005, a team of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists and engineers began work on a tool to accurately locate small amounts of explosives.

Development: In less than three months, researchers developed a credit card-sized detector, the Easy Livermore Inspection Test for Explosives (ELITE), which detects trace amounts of up to 30 different explosives in two minutes. A license was granted to Field Forensics, Inc. in 2006.

Deployment: ELITE™ cards cost $10 to $20 each and have a much longer service life than comparable products, which have costs ranging from $40 to $7,500. Customers include the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, New York State Police, Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Queensland (Australia) Police.

Dynamics in Three Dimensions (DYNA3D): Simulating Vehicle Crashes

Discovery: In the 1980s, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists devised a three-dimensional computer code to design and certify the crashworthiness of the B83 bomb for the nuclear weapons program.

Development: The original code was developed into DYNA3D, a finite element program designed for structural/continuum mechanics problems.

Deployment: Livermore Software Technology Corporation commercialized the software as LSDYNA. The program is one of two leading software tools for simulating complex automotive crash environments. It has evolved to encompass other applications, such as earth structure analysis.

Cost-Effective, High-Precision Radiation Therapy: Treating Cancer with Protons

Discovery: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory developed an advanced new particle accelerator as part of long-standing basic research in particle physics for national security applications.

Development: The Laboratory’s “OpenSpace” facility accelerated collaboration and time to market. A new company was formed and capitalized by the market leader to adapt the technology for next-generation radiation therapy.

Deployment: The new system will reduce manufacturing costs and potentially enable a 10X reduction in size and cost for high-precision cancer treatment. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory continues to develop additional applications for elements of the technology.

A day at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Work with the brightest minds in science and engineering to solve some of the most challenging problems facing the nation using world-class research capabilities and tools.