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Nuclear Data from Baghdad to Berkeley – Playing with the BAND
April 14, 2020 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Atomic nuclei are the highest energy density, practically-accessible systems at humanity’s disposal. This unparalleled energy density allows for the development of unique technological tools to address the health, energy and national/international security challenges of the 21st century provided that we have a good knowledge of nuclear reaction and decay data they require. However, the complex nature of the nuclear many-body problem makes it impossible for us to predict nuclear data accurately enough to optimize the design of these nuclear technologies. Instead, we rely on experimentally-informed modeling, aka evaluation, to determine the best nuclear data values and uncertainties to use.
In 2014, I founded the Bay Area Nuclear Data (BAND) Group at LBNL and UC-Berkeley to address the nuclear data needs of the applied and basic nuclear science and engineering communities while training the next generation of scientists and engineers in the process. The BAND Group does this by having teams of experienced researchers and students work together to perform targeted measurements and modeling.
In this talk, I will present an overview of the BAND Group’s recent work which provides the data needed to produce radioisotopes used to diagnose and fight disease; design fast reactors; enable space exploration and ensure national security.
Lee Bernstein is the Nuclear Data Group Leader and LBNL & UC-Berkeley whose mission is to meet the nuclear data needs of the applied and basic science and engineering community while training the next generation of nuclear scientists and engineers in the process. He has 25 years of experience as an experimental nuclear physicist with a specialization in measuring low-energy nuclear properties and cross sections. Lee has led domestic and international experimental and data analysis campaigns on GB to TB data sets using high-resolution charged-particle, neutron and photon spectrometers. Prior to coming to LBNL he was the Deputy Group Leader for the Nuclear Diagnostics Group at the National Ignition Facility, where he helped lead the effort to develop current-mode detectors capable of determining the properties of HED plasmas. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society “For work developing novel methods of determining neutron-nucleus cross sections via high-resolution gamma-ray spectroscopy, the early development of surrogate ratio method, and the study of nuclear processes in high energy density plasmas at NIF". He is also a adjunct faculty member in the UC-Berkeley department of nuclear engineering where he has taught courses in nuclear physics and policy and serves as the principal academic advisor for 9 Ph.D. students.