Idaho National Laboratory Director Mark Peters is leaving his spot as lab director for a new job with Battelle Energy Alliance.
Peters is moving into a new job as executive vice president for laboratory operations at Battelle. Peters, who has been INL director since 2015, made the announcement Thursday. Battelle is the contractor that runs day-to-day operations at the lab.
”In this new role, I will be working with all of the national laboratories in Battelle’s portfolio — and that includes INL — ensuring we continue to deliver excellence in science and technology, operations, and community engagement,” Peters said in a statement. Peters said Battelle is searching for a new lab director and he plans to stay in his current role until it finds one and help with the new director’s transition into the job.
Peters has presided over a busy time in the lab’s history, including INL’s 70th anniversary celebrations last year. Also in 2019, INL was announced as the site for the National Reactor Innovation Center, a partnership between INL and private companies to test new nuclear reactors. INL has also been working with the Oregon-based NuScale Power and Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems on a plan to build 12 small modular reactors at the U.S. Department of Energy desert site west of Idaho Falls that would provide power to Idaho Falls and other UAMPS members.
Others highlights include the 2019 opening of the Collaborative Computing Center and Cybercore Integration Center, two new buildings on INL’s Idaho Falls campus to improve INL’s cybersecurity work and increase research collaboration with Idaho’s colleges and universities. Also in late 2019, the state of Idaho and the DOE inked a deal under which INL can start to bring research quantities of spent nuclear fuel into the state again if certain new waste cleanup benchmarks are met, potentially ending years of impasse on the issue.Reporter Nathan Brown can be reached at 208-542-6757. Follow him on Twitter: @NateBrownNews.