Hunter Named 2018 Donald Orth Award Recipient

November 27, 2018

AIKEN, S.C. (November 27, 2018) – Savannah River National Laboratory Advisory Scientist, Dr. Douglas Hunter has been named the 2018 recipient of the Donald Orth Lifetime Achievement Award for being a technical leader in improving the detection capabilities for low levels of noble gases in the atmosphere. 

The Orth Award is the highest honor given by the laboratory for technical excellence and leadership. Established in 1993, the award was named for the late Dr. Donald Orth, who retired from Savannah River National Lab in 1992 after a distinguished 41-year career. The award was established to honor an individual “who by character and leadership best exemplifies Dr. Orth’s character and contributions.” 

Dr. Hunter was recognized for consistently translating state-of-the-art research into deployable engineering solutions critical to the nation’s security needs during his distinguished 17-year career at the laboratory. 

As an advisory scientist, he studies the physical-chemical mechanisms or signatures of non-reactive gases for detection in the atmosphere, particularity from nuclear events. Together with engineers and meteorologists at Savannah River National Lab, Dr. Hunter interprets and analyzes measurements of noble gases collected by researchers. 

“This award speaks directly to the quality of work that Doug Hunter performs,” said Dr. Vahid Majidi, Savannah River National Laboratory Director. “He’s dedicated to innovation and has made a significant impact to the mission work we do at SRNL.” 

Most notably, Dr. Hunter has successfully transformed a low-key program into a multimillion dollar research and development program that has established itself as the leader in signatory noble gas collection and detection. He has been recognized by many federal entities including National Nuclear Security Administration and the Department of Defense. 

Hunter said that the Don Orth Award is an embodiment of the excellence of the Savannah River National Laboratory research community. 

“It is when you look at past recipients, and you begin to realize the common thread between past recipients,” said Hunter. “They all represent the very fabric of what makes the lab a unique and special world class institution. This award is for the entire team of people that I have the pleasure to work with, not just myself.” 

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Savannah River National Laboratory is a multidiscipline research and development center, where accomplished scientists and engineers solve the Nation’s most challenging environmental and security problems. Working with partners, the laboratory protects the Nation by applying science to global security, the environment and the energy economy. Savannah River National Laboratory is managed for DOE’s Office of Environmental Management by Savannah River Nuclear Solutions, a Fluor-led company whose members are Fluor Federal Services, Newport News Nuclear and Honeywell. 

Advisory Scientist Dr. Doug Hunter is the 2018 recipient of the Donald Orth Lifetime
Achievement Award for being a technical leader in improving the nation’s security needs.

Advisory Scientist Dr. Doug Hunter and 2018 Don Orth winner adjusts a prototype gas
concentration device for real-time trace analysis.


Media contact: SRNL Media Relations