Nuclear Engineering Opportunities at Los Alamos National Laboratory

Dr.Sarraos
SPEAKER:
Dr. John Sarrao
Deputy Director
Los Alamos National Laboratory
DATE/TIME:
FRI, 09/03/2021 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM
LOCATION:
3105 ETCHEVERRY HALL
Fall 2021 Colloquium Series
Abstract:

Los Alamos’ partnership with UC Berkeley pre-dates the start of the Manhattan Project and continues robustly today. Nevertheless, the National Labs in general, and Los Alamos in particular, are relatively unknown to many students (and faculty) in academia. This presentation provides an overview of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). By highlighting LANL’s strategic priorities and mission needs, we hope to foster further collaborations and enhance pipeline opportunities between Los Alamos and UC Berkeley, especially for nuclear engineers

About the speaker:John Sarrao is the Deputy Laboratory Director for Science, Technology and Engineering (DDSTE) at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He leads the Laboratory’s mission and enabling science, technology, and engineering capabilities. John stewards LANL’s Laboratory Directed Research & Development (LDRD) program and other institutional capability initiatives, including the Laboratory’s student and post-doc programs. He also serves as LANL’s Chief Research Officer. John is an experimental condensed matter physicist. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the winner of the Department of Energy’s E.O. Lawrence Award and the Los Alamos Fellows Prize for Research, in part for the discovery of the first plutonium superconductor. John has been heavily involved in strategic planning and direction setting for materials research within the Department of Energy’s Office of Science and as a member of the National Academies of Sciences’ most recent decadal survey of materials research. John received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Los Angeles based on thesis work performed at LANL.

 

Cesium by the Ocean: Improving the analysis of environmental samples from the Fukushima Province

RalphSudowe
SPEAKER:

Ralf Sudowe

Professor of Radiochemistry & Health Physics

Colorado State University

DATE/TIME:
FRI, 08/27/2021 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM
LOCATION:
 zoom
Fall 2021 Colloquium Series
Abstract:

The goal of radioanalytical chemistry is to identify and quantify radioisotopes present in a variety of samples. It combines advanced radiochemical separations with state-of-the art radiation detection techniques and provides information on the origin, speciation, and mobility of the material. It plays an important role in evaluating its impact on humans and the environment. The analysis of air, water, soil, and bioassay samples builds the foundation of operational environmental monitoring. However, the need for improved sample analysis methods became also apparent in the aftermath of the reactor accident at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant. The elevated salinity of sea and ocean water results in a complex matrix that hinders the isolation, characterization, and determination of the radioisotopes of interest. This presentation will discuss recent research aimed at developing analytical techniques for such challenging types of samples and give examples of their application.

About the Speaker:

Ralf Sudowe is Professor of Radiochemistry & Health Physics in the Department of Environmental & Radiological Health Sciences at Colorado State University. His research focuses on the development and optimization of advanced radiochemical separations for environmental monitoring, emergency response, nuclear forensics, nuclear safeguards, and isotope production. Dr. Sudowe received a M.S. in Chemistry and a Ph.D. in Nuclear Chemistry from the Philipps-University Marburg in Germany. He spent two years as Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow in the Nuclear Science Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and worked several years as a staff scientist in the Nuclear Science and Chemical Sciences Division at LBNL. From 2006 to 2016, Dr. Sudowe was a faculty member in the Department of Health Physics & Diagnostic Sciences at University of Nevada Las Vegas, where he held positions as Assistant & Associate Professor.

Haley Williams featured in the latest issue of Frontiers in Energy Research

Haley Williams featured in the latest issue of Frontiers in Energy Research

July 1st, 2021

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Haley Williams, a PhD student at UC Berkeley who is working with Raluca Scarlat, contributed an article highlighting the efforts of both FUTURE and MSEE in understanding the fundamental properties of molten salts and their role in laying the groundwork for future molten salt reactors. Haley's article - Clean energy you don't have to take with a grain of salt - can be found here: https://www.energyfrontier.us/content/clean-energy-you-dont-have-take-grain-salt

Professors Scarlat and Fratoni receive U.S. Department of Energy NEUP Grants

Professors Scarlat and Fratoni receive U.S. Department of Energy NEUP Grants

June 22, 2021

Green and Blue Gradient New Item Instagram Post
PI: Scarlat
CoPIs: Mark Asta (UC Berkeley), Boris Khaykovich (MIT), Sven Vogel (LANL), Ian Farnan (Cambridge University, UK)
PI: Mark Anderson (UW Madison)
CoPIs: Raluca Scarlat (UCB), Kevin Robb (ORNL), Industrial Collaborators: Joseph Hensel (Powdermet Inc.) and Nicolas Zweibaum (Kairos Power)
PI: Dan Kotlyar, Georgia Institute of Technology
Co-PIs: Massimiliano Fratoni, University of California, Berkeley; Thomas Evans, Oak Ridge National Laboratory; Michael Savela, Framatome Inc.
PI: Zeyun Wu – Virginia Commonwealth University
Co-PIs: Massimiliano Fratoni, UC Berkeley; Benjamin Betzler, ORNL; Tingzhou Fei, ANL; Kurt Harris, Flibe Energy

Professor Raluca Scarlat wins the Society of Hellman Fellows Fund

Professor Raluca Scarlat wins the Society of Hellman Fellows Fund

May 28th, 2021

Raluca Scarlat_website photo
Professor Raluca Scarlat wins the Society of Hellman Fellows Fund with her proposal:
"The Relationship between Acidity of Molten Salts and Their Properties,"
Congratulations Professor Scarlat!
More info on the fund and past recipients:
https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/support-uc/donate/society-of-hellman-fellows

Individual Stories behind Fukushima Nuclear Tragedy

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SPEAKER:
Kazuma Obara
Photojournalist
DATE/TIME:
FRI, 04/30/2021 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM
LOCATION:
via zoom 
Spring 2021 Colloquium Series
Abstract:

Japanese photojournalist Obara will give a talk about individual stories of Fukushima Daiichi nuclear workers in Fukushima. Many aspects of the accident and working conditions forced nuclear workers to be silent after the accident. Workers became invisible from the society. He had tried to uncover their individual stories. In this talk, Obara will also show his latest pictures in current Fukushima in 2021.

About the Speaker:

Kazuma Obara (Japan, 1985) is a photojournalist based in Japan. Focusing on personal stories in nuclear tragedy. He engaged in the project of Fukushima and Chernobyl nuclear accident and Bikini nuclear testing. His long term documentary series "Exposure" received First Prize in the World Press Photo 2016 People category. Obara currently works on the project of COVID-19 under the support of National Geographic Society.

Fuel Cycle Needs to Support Advanced Reactors

Leggett-Photo-Blue_Shirt
SPEAKER:
Christina J. Leggett, Ph.D.
Nuclear Engineering Technical Consultant Booz Allen Hamilton
DATE/TIME:
FRI, 04/23/2021 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM
LOCATION:
zoom
Spring 2021 Colloquium Series
Abstract:

Now is an exciting time for the nuclear industry. Several advanced reactor designers are vying to enter the reactor market with a range of reactor designs, including molten salt reactors, high-temperature gas reactors, sodium fast reactors, and even microreactors. They range in size from a few megawatts to approximately 1 gigawatt, can operate at near atmospheric pressures and ultra-high temperatures, and use non-traditional coolants and fuels. Advanced reactors are also enjoying substantial bipartisan support, as evidenced by recent legislation and authorizations, and demonstrations of selected designs are being pursued DOE, DoD, and NASA. However, in order to help ensure the success of demonstrations and potential future deployments, the existing nuclear fuel cycle must evolve to meet the demands of these diverse designs. In addition, the novel fuel types and enrichments have presented new and unique challenges that need to be addressed. This presentation provides an overview and status of ongoing efforts to meet these needs and summarizes some of the challenges that also need to be addressed.

About the Speaker:

Christina Leggett is a nuclear engineering consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton. In this role, she provides technical expertise to support new program development efforts at DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) and manages R&D programs funded under ARPA-E’s nuclear fission portfolio. Prior to joining Booz Allen Hamilton, she worked as a nuclear engineer and program manager for ​the aqueous separations, pyroprocessing, and molten salt chemistry programs in the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Nuclear Energy. She also worked at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for five years as a Nuclear Engineer (criticality reviewer) in the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards and as a Reactor Systems Engineer in the Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research. She is an active Executive Committee member of the ANS Fuel Cycle and Waste Management Division, serving as the Program Chair and Awards Committee Chair. Christina holds a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from the University of California-Berkeley and is the author of several papers.

Thinking differently about radiation damage: New methods of measurement using nuclear magnetic resonance.

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SPEAKER:
Ian Farnan
Professor of Earth and Nuclear Materials in the Department of Earth Sciences, University of Cambridge
DATE/TIME:
FRI, 04/23/2021 - 11:00AM TO 12:00PM
LOCATION:
zoom
Spring 2021 Colloquium Series
Abstract:
The effects of radiation damage are a constant source of concern in nuclear engineering.  The need the need to achieve greater tolerance over the effects of radiation damage is fundamental to the roadmap for the implementation of next generation fission and fusion systems, but how well do we understand the scale of the initial damage event and its recovery?  Results will be presented from ‘nuclearised’ nuclear magnetic resonance experiments that show that the number fraction of (permanently) displaced atoms may be determined directly by experimental measurement, in contrast to volume changes and inferred defect concentrations. This challenges some of the existing assumptions about the initial scale of disruption caused by damage events and reveals the importance of local chemistry in the recovery process.
About the Speaker:

Ian Farnan is Professor of Earth and Nuclear Materials in the Department of Earth Sciences, University of Cambridge. His research is focused on the structure, durability and fabrication of nuclear materials and naturally occurring radioactive minerals and the underpinning science for the disposal of radioactive waste.  He is the Consortium Lead for the CaFFE (Carbides for Future Fission Environments) UK EPSRC to examine new materials for accident tolerant fuels and led the UK NDA-EPSRC research programme on the suitability of UK AGR fuel for geological disposal.  Dr Farnan is involved with the use of international facilities for radiochemical research and the development of analytical techniques at the facilities to support his research and the nuclear research community.  He was coordinator of the Euratom FP7 programme EURACT-NMR and served on the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Environmental and Molecular Sciences Directorate of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (2007-15).   He is Chair of Cambridge Nuclear Energy Centre and advises the UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority on the disposal of high activity materials. Farnan has held a Visiting Professorship at Stanford University and visiting scientist positions at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation and at the European Commission Institute for Transuranium Elements (JRC).

Protactinium Production in Leading Thorium Fuel Cycles

Eva
SPEAKER:
Dr. Eva C. Uribe
senior systems research analyst at Sandia National Laboratories
DATE/TIME:
FRI, 04/09/2021 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM
LOCATION:
zoom
SPRING 2021 Colloquium Series
Abstract:

Nuclear power from thorium fuel cycles is being explored around the world to extend uranium resource and to reduce the quantity of long-lived nuclear waste generated by civilian nuclear power production. Significant research and development efforts towards fuel cycles using thorium as the primary fertile material in place of uranium have occurred in India, Canada (Thorium Power), China (SINAP), Norway (ThorEnergy), the United States (Flibe, Thorcon), and elsewhere. Protactinium-233 is produced during the neutron irradiation of thorium-232 in a nuclear reactor. Protactinium-233 is a precursor to uranium-233, where uranium-233 is an accountable nuclear material under international nuclear safeguards. Currently, there are no conceptual approaches for monitoring and verifying protactinium-233 during thorium irradiation and spent fuel reprocessing. This presentation will describe a collaboration between researchers at Sandia National Laboratories and Oak Ridge National Laboratory to identify leading thorium fuel cycle candidates and to quantify protactinium production rates in those fuel cycles. Eva Uribe is an alumna of the Nuclear Science and Security Consortium, and she will also provide a brief overview of her early career since graduating from UC Berkeley.

About the Speaker:

Dr. Eva C. Uribe is a senior systems research analyst at Sandia National Laboratories. As a systems analyst, she teams across disciplines to provide unbiased and objective information and frameworks for decisionmakers to understand the risks, benefits, and unintended consequences of options within complex national security landscapes. Her current portfolio includes projects in advanced nuclear fuel cycle safeguards, spent nuclear fuel reprocessing, nuclear deterrence, nuclear nonproliferation, and cyber systems analysis. Prior to joining the laboratory in 2017, she was a Stanton Nuclear Security postdoctoral fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University, where she investigated the implications of advanced spent fuel reprocessing capabilities in thorium fuel cycles on nuclear nonproliferation and the international safeguards regime. Eva graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a Ph.D. in chemistry in 2016. She conducted her graduate research as an affiliate of the Heavy Element Nuclear and Radiochemistry Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Her dissertation focused on understanding the interaction between aqueous actinide and lanthanide species and organically-modified, high-surface area mesoporous silica materials, using solid-phase nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. She also collaborated with the Goldman School of Public Policy to conduct policy analysis on the use of cross-domain deterrence in American foreign policy. Eva graduated from Yale University in 2011 with a B.S. in chemistry and a double major in political science. She was a Next Generation Safeguards Initiative intern in the Nonproliferation Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the summers of 2008 and 2009.