NSE - Nuclear Science & Engineering at MIT


News Archives : 2009

The High Costs of Copenhagen

What President Obama's pledge to reduce emissions by 83% would mean in practice.

Professor Richard K. Lester | Wall Street Journal

George ApostolakisWhen President Obama goes to the Copenhagen climate change summit next week, he is expected to once again declare that the U.S. will reduce its carbon emissions 83% by 2050. Even though no legally binding agreement is expected, what Mr. Obama says in Denmark will define the U.S. position in subsequent international negotiations. He will not say how the cuts will be accomplished. For Americans, the details are worth knowing.

>> Read full WSJ Op-ed

>> Read related working papers

Student Profile | Russell Rodewald SB'10

"An appreciation for the beauty of the fact that an event on such a small scale (atomic interactions) can have such large consequences"— this is what drew Russell Rodewald to the field of nuclear science and engineering. Rodewald is a senior in the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering and is enrolled in the MIT Engineering Leadership Program. His experience and interactions in the Program have been invaluable in his preparation for the future — "The awareness and experiential knowledge on how to act on it—both of which are developed in the program through teaching the junior class—will surely form the foundation for success as a leader after MIT."

Read Boston Globe article

Learn more about the MIT Engineering Leadership Program

Professor Mujid Kazimi wins ANS 2009 Technical Achievement Award in Thermal Hydraulics

George ApostolakisProfessor Mujid Kazimi is the winner of the 2009 Technical Achievement Award given annually by the ANS Thermal Hydraulics Division. Professor Kazimi is TEPCO Professor of Nuclear Engineering; Professor of Mechanical Engineering; and the Director, Center for Advanced Nuclear Energy Systems (CANES).

The award was established by Thermal Hydraulics Division (THD) in 1984 to recognize outstanding past or current technical achievement. It is normally presented annually to a member of the THD. The award is granted to an individual ‘based on a major contribution to the state of the art, an important publication, a major technical achievement, or a sustained record of accomplishment and technical excellence in the art or science of Thermal Hydraulics."

Professor Kazimi's research includes work in nuclear systems safety, the nuclear fuel cycle, two-phase flow and heat transfer. He has served on a variety of safety, educational and research committees, including for the National Research Council and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. He is a fellow of the American Nuclear Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The award will be presented on November 17 at the ANS meeting. Professor Kazimi will give a talk entitled "Re-Engineering the Light Water Reactor" at 4:00PM following the awards ceremony.

President Obama to nominate Professor George Apostolakis as Commissioner of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission

George ApostolakisOn Friday, October 9, 2009, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate Professor George Apostolakis, as Commissioner of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Professor Apostolakis is the Korea Electric Power Company professor of Nuclear Science and Engineering and a professor of Engineering Systems at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is a member and former chairman of the statutory Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission. His current research interests include methods for risk and reliability assessment of complex technological systems; nuclear reactor safety; uncertainty analysis; the use of Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) in design; infrastructure security; risk-informed and performance-based regulation; and risk management involving multiple stakeholders. He has published numerous papers and has participated in many PRA courses and PRA reviews.

>> Read full White House press release

Professor Richard Lester named as new NSE Department Head

Richard LesterProfessor Richard Lester has been named the next head of the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering, effective Sept. 1, 2009, Dean of Engineering Subra Suresh announced this week. Lester, who will succeed Professor Ian Hutchinson as department head, has been a member of the department's faculty since 1979. He received his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Imperial College and his PhD in nuclear engineering from MIT.

>> MIT News Office

MIT's new energy minor provides a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the policy, economics, science and technology of energy

Starting this year, all MIT undergraduate students have a new academic option available to them: a minor in energy, which can be combined with any major subject. The new minor, unlike most energy concentrations available at other institutions, and unlike any other concentration at MIT, is designed to be inherently cross-disciplinary, encompassing all of MITs five schools.

>> read more

>> Learn more about Energy Studies minor

Nuclear Power, Weapons Proliferation, and Climate Change: New Issue of Journal Daedalus Explores the Global Nuclear Future

In the future there will be more nuclear technology spread across more nations than ever before. Will the growth of nuclear power lead to increased risks of nuclear weapons proliferation and nuclear terrorism? Will the nonproliferation regime be adequate to ensure safety and security in a world more widely and heavily invested in nuclear power?

Policy experts, economists, scientists, and nuclear industry leaders from various perspectives and nations explore these questions in a special two-volume issue of Daedalus, the journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The first volume will be published October 9.

The authors examine the interconnected issues of a potential worldwide expansion of civilian nuclear power, attendant risks of weapons proliferation and nuclear terrorism, and the prospects for lessening the impact of climate change through growth in nuclear energy.

>> read more

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