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ORAU History

A Success Story 60+ Years in the Making

ORAU celebrates a rich history that spans more than 60 years of advancing scientific research and education by creating mutually beneficial collaborative partnerships involving academe, government, and industry.

The ORAU Story

Few people know that the concept for ORAU was conceived over dinner one night during the mid-1940s. Our founder’s vision of linking the valuable scientific resources developed in Oak Ridge as part of the Manhattan Project with regional universities was the catalyst for what our organization has become today.


Founded by Dr. William G. Pollard in 1946, ORAU has focused its efforts on advancing scientific research and education while creating partnerships to help achieve an America that is safer, more secure, and better able to compete in the global environment. Check out these highlights of ORAU’s accomplishments from 1946 to the present.

Faces of ORAU

Get to know a few of the many individuals who have made significant contributions to our nation’s progress in radiation medicine, science education, and professional training.