October 25, 2021
Staff Accomplishment

Science for the Front Line: Brent VanDevender

Detecting rare radioactive decays and dark matter is extremely challenging

Brent VanDevender

Brent VanDevender was promoted to scientist and engineer level 5, one of PNNL’s most senior research roles, earlier this year.

(Photo by Andrea Starr | Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is highlighting scientific and technical experts in the national security domain who were recently promoted to scientist and engineer level 5, one of PNNL’s most senior research roles. Each of these researchers have made significant contributions to the national security science, technology, and innovations developed at PNNL.

Brent VanDevender is an experimental nuclear physicist and the program manager for nuclear physics research at PNNL. He also holds a joint appointment at the University of Washington as affiliate associate professor in the Department of Physics.

“Many of the measurements we make both in fundamental science and in our applied missions are very sensitive to naturally occurring radiation. The only way to get away from cosmic radiation is to go underground. We have a Shallow Underground Laboratory where we can get to just 1% of the exposure one would have on the surface,” said VanDevender.

Video by Eric Francavilla | Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Click here to view more of the 2021 Science for the Front Line video series.