> 2007 feature stories
2007 Feature Stories
ECBC Releases FY 2006 Annual Report
Chemical Biological Center's (ECBC) Annual
Report highlighting 2006 technical achievements is now available
online. ECBC's workforce
achieved important milestones and technological breakthroughs in
2006, bringing immediate and direct support to the warfighter while
advancing technology that will be crucial for the warfight of tomorrow.
To request a hard copy please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
(August 2, 2007)
Raymond DiBerardo Receives the Army's Highest Honorary Award
Raymond DiBerardo, ECBC Project Leader and Technical Engineer,
was presented with the Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service
Award by Jim Zarzycki, ECBC Director, and George Collins, ECBC
CB Services Director. DiBerardo received the US Department of the
Army's highest honorary award for his extensive accomplishments
including the successful destruction of approximately 300 chemical
munitions; the design, development and testing of mobile destruction
systems; and providing exceptional chemical demilitarization support
to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the Albanian government.
(July 11, 2007)
ECBC Employees Receive Excellence
in Federal Career Awards
The Baltimore Federal Executive Board recognized three Edgewood
Chemical Biological Center (ECBC) employees in the 2007 Excellence
in Federal Career Awards program. The purpose of this program is
to recognize outstanding men and women in the federal government
for exceptional and commendable work.
Alvin (AJay) Thornton, ECBC, is a Silver Award
recipient in the “Outstanding Supervisor” category.
AJay serves as a senior manager and business unit leader for all
Engineering Directorate efforts related to individual and collective
protection, contamination avoidance and decontamination. He also
serves as client manager to five Joint Project Managers, as well
as the US Army TACOM Life Cycled Management Command Integrated
Logistic Support Center. AJay is recognized as a highly motivated
professional, who continues to raise the standard for future leaders.
Pioneering the ECBC mentoring program for young journeyman level
scientists and engineers, AJay and his mentee program participants
were recognized as the most productive teams and now serve as the
standard for others.
Joan Michel, ECBC, received a Silver Award within
the “Outstanding Professional (Administrative Management & Specialist)” category.
Within two and a half years Joan has developed and implemented
a long-term plan to improve ECBC’s internal and external
communications. ECBC’s strategic plan recognized the importance
of improving internal communications and improving awareness of
ECBC’s capabilities among external stakeholders. The plan
also incorporates efforts to improve communications and relationships
with the local community, state and local elected officials and
high level organizations within the Army and the Department of
Defense. By proactively addressing ways to increase internal awareness
of new projects, employee recognition and accomplishments, Joan
has ultimately enhanced the knowledge, performance and camaraderie
of the staff. Joan’s work has brought visibility to the civilian
chemical and biological defense sector, opening opportunities for
increased technology transfer that will serve for years to come.
Raymond Mastnjak, ECBC Science and Technology
Advisor for the CB Services Directorate, received the Silver Award
in the “Volunteer Service Individual” category. By
example, Ray encourages his peers to continually grow and develop
their talents and skills. Earlier this year he took a leave of
absence to volunteer at the Children of Zion Village, an orphanage
that is home to 55 children between the ages of one and 16 infected
by Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency
Syndrome (AIDS). The Village, located on the Zambezi River in Africa,
provides the children with education, health care and vocational
and life skills training. Within his seven months at the orphanage,
Ray’s leadership and handyman skills were instrumental in
making improvements such as: building the school house, kitchen
repairs, helping the medical staff tend to the physical needs of
the children and vehicle repairs. His support also resulted in
providing transportation for locals villagers to the hospital and
establishing computer, math and music classes for the children.
The work of these men and women promote a higher standard of performance
in the federal government. These awards honor exemplary job performance
and employee contributions to the federal government or the community.
(May 8, 2007)
ECBC Scientists Identify Pathogens
That May Be Causing Global Honey-Bee Deaths
Scott Bauer, USDA/ARS
Researchers have identified potential culprits behind the wide-spread
catastrophic death of honey bees around North America and Europe.
A team of scientists from Edgewood Chemical Biological Center and
University of California San Francisco identified both a virus
and a parasite that are likely behind the recent sudden die-off
of honey-bee colonies.
Using a new technology called the Integrated Virus Detection
System (IVDS), which was designed for military use to rapidly screen
samples for pathogens, ECBC scientists last week isolated the presence
of viral and parasitic pathogens that may be contributing to the
honeybee loss. Confirmation testing was conducted over the weekend
by scientists at the University of California San Francisco. ECBC
scientists presented the results of their studies yesterday to
a United States Department of Agriculture working group, hastily
convened to determine next steps.
For the past year, experts have observed a marked decline in
the honey bee population, with entire colonies collapsing without
warning. Approximately 50 percent of hives have disappeared and
researchers around the country are scrambling to find out why.
Scientists have termed this phenomenon "Colony Collapse Disorder" and
fear that without honey bees to pollinate crops like fruits, vegetables,
and almonds the loss of honey bees could have an enormous horticultural
and economic impact around the world.
ECBC is one of many academic, commercial and government concerns
studying the honey bee population decline. ECBC’s role will
be to identify the extent of the problem and conduct ongoing detection
the press release]
(April 25, 2007)
ECBC Celebrates its 90th Anniversary
This year marks Edgewood's 90th Anniversary. Since 1917, the U.S.
Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center has served as the Nation’s
lead science and technology center for the development of chemical
and biological defense products and services. Our history dates
back to the trenches of World War I where chemical agent was first
used as a battlefield weapon and gas masks were consequently needed
for U.S. Army soldiers. From April 2007 to October 2007 we will
be commemorating this 90-year history with lectures, informational
products and special events.
To kick off our 90th anniversary celebration, Mr. Jeffery Smart,
Research, Development and Engineering Command's historian, presented
the first in a series of monthly historical lectures, "The History
of Edgewood." Click here to view a video of
his presentation, which chronicles the Edgewood Area of Aberdeen
Proving Ground's growth and change over decades. Each month we
will also feature a story about a particular event in Edgewood's
To view these stories click here.
(April 24, 2007)
ECBC Research Chemist Received ASTM International Award of Merit
Ann Brozena Butrow, ECBC Research Chemist, was recently presented
the Award of Merit by the American Society for Testing and Materials
(ASTM) International for her exceptional work with ASTM International
Committee E37 on Thermal Measurements. The Award of Merit is ASTM
International’s highest achievement for individual members
that demonstrate distinguished service and outstanding participation
in committee activities.
Ann’s significant individual contribution and exemplary
leadership earned her the Award of Merit and the honorary title
of Fellow. ASTM International Committee E37 recognized Ann for
her work in thermal analysis, including standards tests and terminology.
James Thomas, ASTM President, presented the award to Ann during
a Committee E37 meeting at the ASTM Headquarters in West Conshohocken,
Throughout her career at ECBC, Ann has concentrated on investigating
physical and thermal properties of chemicals, specifically those
of military interest. In 1994, Ann joined ASTM as a member of an
E37 task group working to standardize procedures for vapor pressure
measurement by differential thermal analysis. Her work with this
task group led to the publication of ASTM E1782, Standard Test
Method for Determining Vapor Pressure by Thermal Analysis in 1996.
Currently, Ann is the First Vice-Chairman of ASTM Committee E37
on Thermal Measurements, one of 139 technical standards writing
committees. At present, Committee E37 controls over 50 standards
that are vital in testing various materials for thermal, rheological,
and thermophysical properties. In addition, she chairs Subcommittee
E37.03 on Nomenclature and Definitions and a task group on method
consistency. Ann’s efforts with ASTM have previously earned
her the honor of an E37 Award of Appreciation. Ann’s hard
work and dedication have proved her to be a great asset to ASTM
International and ECBC.
(April 24, 2007)
Kids & Chemistry Program nominated for the Government
Community Service Organization of the Year Award
Kids & Chemistry Program, led by Ms. Suzanne Procell, CB Services
Directorate, was formally acknowledged at the Harford County Human
Relations Commission Good Neighbor Community Service Award ceremony
held on 18 Apr 07 at the St. Mary Magdalen Mission, Churchville,
Maryland. The Kids & Chemistry Program was nominated for the
Government Community Service Organization of the Year Award which
recognizes outstanding achievements and unique contributions to
the community. The Kids & Chemistry Program, established in
the year 2000, is a group of approximately 20 volunteers that provides
Harford County's youth with an educational opportunity to interact
with some of the US Army’s most skilled scientists, engineers
and computer analysts during hands-on science projects held throughout
the year in local libraries, county facilities and schools. The
program's goal is to inspire these young residents to pursue higher
education and career opportunities in the sciences. As a result,
these young residents are encouraged to see the importance of education
and the possibility of future science-related careers. This interaction
also creates working relationships within the community and a better
understanding of the work that occurs at ECBC and how it impacts
the local community and the Nation. Thus far, the Kids & Chemistry
team has provided hands-on science projects to over 2,500 youths. Click
here to visit their website.
(April 24, 2007)
Sample Receipt Facility Under Construction
Site work has begun for the Sample Receipt Facility (SRF)-the only full-range national resource to receive, triage, sample, and screen "unknowns" coming from anywhere in the world including military theaters of operation, intelligence organizations, and law enforcement agencies.
The SRF is the first multi-agency funded project at Aberdeen Proving
Grounds-with $15M provided by the Army, $9.6M contributed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and $2.4M provided by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), totaling $27M in construction funds. The US Army Corps of Engineers worked with experts and scientists from the various agencies to design this one of a kind facility.
The FBI will safely receive WMD evidence by using specialized
chemical and biological forensic laboratories designed to protect
them as they conduct their traditional forensic examinations on
contaminated evidence. Simultaneously, ECBC will identify and render
safe the hazardous materials or explosives. The new DHS Chemical
Security Analysis Center (CSAC) would then integrate the combined
laboratory results with information from intelligence reports and
other knowledge databases to further aid in characterizing the
material or provide investigative leads.
Utilities are slated to be installed and the foundation poured
by late February 2007. Completion is expected in the summer of
2008. Working together within a single facility, the FBI, ECBC,
and DHS have taken a leap forward in enhancing the Nation's capability to deal with potential WMD attacks.
(January 31, 2007)
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