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In the early 1960s, with the development of space science brought about by rocket and satellite capabilities, and by research in thermonuclear power, interest in the behavior of very hot gases and plasmas had grown substantially. However, the relevant fields of physics were poorly understood. As a result, progress was being held up in the fields of space exploration and astrophysics, thermonuclear power and plasma physics, rocket re-entry problems, ultra-high temperature research, and atmospheric research. Lacking were precise measurement techniques, standards, and basic data on the fundamental properties of the hot gas or plasma.  The formation of a wholly new organization was to emphasize these areas. The organization was called the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics (JILA) and was located on the University of Colorado campus in Boulder, CO. [From: A Unique Institution by Elio Passaglia, pp. 322-323. https://doi.org/10.6028/nist.sp.925 ]

 
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