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Donald B.
Democrat VA 8

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  • Department of Energy Laboratory Modernization and Technology Transfer Act of 2015

    by Representative Donald S. Beyer Jr.

    Posted on 2015-05-19

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    BEYER. Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank Mr. Hultgren and Mr. Perlmutter for their leadership on this important issue.

    This bill helps foster opportunities for entrepreneurs to more easily access technologies coming out of the Department of Energy and connect the brilliant minds to the equally brilliant [[Page H3377]] minds in the private sector who can then commercialize this technology.

    Federal R&D is responsible for many of the industries and technologies that now drive our national wealth--the most earth- shattering example, the Internet, developed by government scientists at DARPA.

    Federal research spawned the biotech and semiconductor industries; gave us tools like the laser, GPS, and MRI; and, through the World Wide Web and the Internet, has entirely changed the way we find a restaurant, talk to our children, and sell cars.

    The role of the private sector in developing technology is vital, and government must lead the way in innovation, providing the patient capital necessary to perform research without any known commercial application or concern for profit.

    I am reminded of the fascinating idea that mathematicians who develop things in their heads, in their offices, with no application to anything, so often, within weeks, will find that that mathematical new idea applies to real-life situations.

    Einstein marveled at the power of pure mathematics, and he said, ``How can it be that mathematics, being after all a product of human thought which is independent of experience, is so admirably appropriate to the objects of reality?'' In 1959, the physicist Eugene Wigner described this problem as ``the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics.'' H.R. 1158 helps bring these pieces together, mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, and technology; and I urge my colleagues to support it.

    Thank you, Chairman Smith, Mr. Hultgren, and Mr. Perlmutter.

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