Oak Ridge Reservation, Tennessee

Oak Ridge Reservation

The Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR), located in Roane and Anderson Counties in East Tennessee, played a crucial role in the development of the atomic bomb. In the early 1940's, the United States selected this rural, remote site as one of the three “secret cities” in the country to develop weapons grade material as part of the Manhattan Project. Originally known as the Clinton Engineering Works, the Oak Ridge Reservation includes three facilities; Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Y-12 National Security Plant, and the Gaseous Diffusion Plant, now known as the East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP).

Oak Ridge Reservation boundaries

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

The Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), once code-named X-10, developed processes to separate plutonium from irradiated uranium fuel for use in the atomic bomb. ORNL is now a national lab with current emphasis on both applied energy technologies and basic science research.

Y-12 National Security Complex

The plant's original mission was to separate bomb grade uranium-235 from other forms of uranium by the electromagnetic process. Until 1992, the plant was a weapons component manufacturing facility. It now serves as part of DOE's weapons dismantlement complex and is home to the Centers for Manufacturing Technology.

East Tennessee Technology Park

The East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP) facility, code named K-25, housed the enormous uranium enrichment effort during World War II and the Cold War. The site is now the center of DOE's environmental restoration and waste management activities. Private companies now are able to lease parts of ETTP, through a reindustrialization effort.