Sanford Underground dedicates building to Sen. Rounds

LEAD, S.D. —A new operations building at the Sanford Underground Research Facility was dedicated to Senator Mike Rounds in Lead Friday.

Rounds, Lieutenant Governor Larry Rhoden, and former Governor Dennis Daugaard in attendance, speaking alongside scientists close to the project and cutting the ribbon.

Thumbnail Img 5292The 26,000-square-foot building contains maintenance shops and offices dedicated to operating the underground research facility, which will house a giant particle detector for the international Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment – or “DUNE” – a massive project bringing in thousands of scientists from more than 30 countries.

Rounds, who has pushed for the project since his term as governor, says the research facility does more than just put South Dakota on the map.

“Our economy also grows, because you don’t measure the value of a national laboratory in millions – you measure it in billions,” Sen. Rounds says.

Rounds celebrating the facility,  which gives the best and brightest in the state a place to conduct research – instead of leaving for opportunities elsewhere.

The site expected to have an estimated $1.6 billion economic impact in South Dakota over the next decade.

“I said when we were working on this – the underground lab had more potential for economic development for our state in the years to come than it did as a gold mine,” says Lt. Gov. Larry Rhoden.

The DUNE Project involves international cooperation and funding, and hopes to paint a clearer picture of the universe and how it works.

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