The transplutonium elements were discovered beginning in the 1940s and 50s, with many synthesized for the first time at UC Berkeley. Since that time, large scale reactor production programs have taken place at the Savannah River Site, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, amongst others. Production and isolation of the transplutonium elements present many unique challenges, including high radiotoxicity, short half-lives, poor nuclear data, and significant heat production. These challenges, and the research underway to address them, will be discussed during this talk, as well as ongoing and potential future applications of various transplutonium isotopes.
Dr. Susan Hogle received her PhD in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Tennessee in 2012, and her Bachelors of Applied Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Toronto in 2004. Dr. Hogle currently works at the Radiochemical Engineering Development Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory where her primary area of research is in the reactor production of isotopes, in particular actinides such as 229Th, 249Bk, and 252Cf. Additional areas of research include optimization and evolutionary modeling, sensitivity and uncertainty analysis for depletion, and integral cross-section measurements.