DOE Set to Double Price of Troubled Laser Project

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Science  05 May 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5467, pp. 782-783
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5467.782

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Last week, Department of Energy (DOE) officials publicly outlined several options for rescuing the troubled National Ignition Facility at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California that will add from $750 million to $1 billion to NIF's current $1.2 billion price tag. Members of Congress--which must approve a new spending plan for the project--are grumbling about the huge overruns, and Science has learned that Livermore and DOE officials are at odds over which option should be chosen. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson may decide how to proceed as early as this week.