On an oak-studded hillside a mere two miles from Stanford University lies the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. Run by Stanford for the DOE, SLAC is home to a 2-mile-long linear accelerator, a synchrotron and the world’s most powerful X-ray laser. Experiments there probe everything from the most intricate molecular details of artwork or cellular structures to the origins of the universe and materials for better batteries.

The relationship between SLAC and Stanford goes back 60 years, to a meeting where Stanford physicists helped plot construction of the linear accelerator. Since that time, collaborations between Stanford and SLAC scientists contributed to four Nobel prizes in physics and chemistry. Now their proximity supports several joint research centers and institutes and creates unparalleled opportunities for Stanford faculty and students to investigate the world we live in and solve real-world challenges.

Story Credits

Producer: Amy Adams

Design/Art Direction: John Holleman, Kevin Garcia

Editor: Bjorn Carey

Writers: Amy Adams, Angela Anderson, Glennda Chui, Manuel Gnida, Glenn Roberts Jr, Ker Than

Videos, Simulations and Visualizations: Kurt Hickman, Stanford News Service, SLAC, Y-Y. Mao, R. Wechsler, R. Kaehler

Photography: Cantor Art Center, Los Alamos National Laboratory, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford Engineering, Shutterstock, Arianna Gleason, Rod Searcey, Christopher Smith, Brian Stansberry