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7 Conclusions Overall the deliverables and the accomplishments of the EEEL are commendable, considering the broad criteria for assessment listed below:  The technical merit of the current laboratory programs relative to current state-of-the-art programs worldwide;  The adequacy of the laboratory budget, facilities, equipment, and human resources, as they affect the quality of laboratory’s technical programs; and  The degree to which laboratory programs in measurement science and standards achieve their stated objectives and desired impact. The EEEL staff in management and research alike have earned high regard for their professionalism and dedication. However, a balance between the permanent staff and on- assignment researchers is needed. The number of permanent staff is declining, threatening the operation’s continuity and stability. Some projects (as outlined in Chapter 3) are under strain due to budget constraints. For example, the Macro Electronics project is severely underfunded. Macroelectronics, parallel to nanoelectronics and microelectronics, is equally important to the fulfillment of the EEEL’s overall objectives. Further roadmapping of each project should be done, and possible synergy among the projects is encouraged. Certain facilities are in need of updating, renovation, and augmentation. An incremental progress continues, yet new thrusts are also desired, conducive to the future of the institution. The new thrusts and strategic projects recommended in Chapter 6 will further propel the EEEL to a growth mode and impart increasingly high impact to the NIST mission. The success of an integrated Smart Grid system will epitomize the country’s commercial leadership and technological prowess. A working Smart Grid system, with the desired reliability, efficiency, and safety, is expected to revolutionize electricity supply, distribution, and consumption. It also will demonstrate the capability of embracing green energy electricity, as well as environmentally friendly transportation (hybrid and electric vehicles), making it a sustainable energy model. By fully employing the wealth of collective expertise and experience in the EEEL, NIST is poised to take the leadership position among other agencies in developing and deploying the multi-front technologies and the standards that govern the deployment of smart grids. The Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory, equipped with diverse professional skills and comprehensive technical expertise, has demonstrated significant accomplishments in crucial programs and is ready to take on challenging national strategic programs. 36