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Burns receives NEUP award to develop used nuclear fuel recycle process

June 26, 2017

Dr. Jonathan Burns, an associate research scientist with the Nuclear Security Science and Policy Institute (NSSPI), was recently awarded a research and development award of close to $400,000 from the U.S. Department of Energy as part of their Nuclear Energy University Program (NEUP). Burns's project, which focuses on group actinide separation by crystallization, was one of two proposals selected in the area of separations and the only one dealing with recovering the actinides from used nuclear fuel.  According to Burns, the technique he proposes is a paradigm shift away from ...
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Erchinger, Shah Present at SORMA West 2016

June 3, 2016

NSSPI students Manit Shah and Jennifer Erchinger presented posters at the 2016 IEEE Symposium on Radiation Measurements and Applications (SORMA West) in Berkeley, CA from May 22 through 26.  Both Shah and Erchinger are Ph.D. students in Dr. Craig Marianno's research group, which focuses on combatting nuclear terrorism through research in radiation detection, emergency response, and consequence-management.  Shah's poster featured his research with Dr. Marianno and Dr. Sunil Khatri from the Texas A&M Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering on the us...
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Consolidated Nuclear Security Leadership Visits NSSPI to Discuss Collaboration on Research and Education

May 12, 2016

  On April 14th and 15th, NSSPI hosted a group of subject matter experts from the Y-12 National Security Complex and the Pantex Plant, both of which are managed and operated by Consolidated Nuclear Security, LLC (CNS). The group consisted of Senior Director for Global Security and Strategic Partnerships Morris Hassler, Nuclear Engineer and International Safeguards Expert Jill Cooley, the Director of Technology Development Thomas Berg, Manager of Global Security Analysis and Training J. Toby Williams, Director of Program Development Perry Kent, and Director of Special Program...
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NSSPI Graduate Spotlight: Mary Johansen

May 6, 2016

Mary Johansen will be receiving her M.S. degree in nuclear engineering from Texas A&M University this May.  She worked with Dr. William Charlton to quantify the nuclear weapons latency value of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with the Islamic Republic of Iran.  The JCPOA is intended to ensure that the nuclear program in Iran will exist solely for peaceful uses, but, given Iran's past actions of nuclear hedging and pushing the boundaries of agreements, policymakers would benefit from a reliable method to judge the effectiveness of the agreement and how ...
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NSSPI Graduate Spotlight: Corey Keith

May 2, 2016

Corey Keith will be graduating with a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering in May.  Keith worked with Dr. William Charlton on a project to investigate trace uranium-236 content variations in world-wide geologic uranium deposits.  Nuclear signatures, whether for forensics or safeguards applications, utilize two broad class­es: comparative and predictive. While compar­ative methods analyze a sample against a data­base of previously measured samples, predictive signatures utilize the underlying physics of the system to draw conclusions about the origin of the sample. Keith's work e...
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NSSPI Students Win AREVA-Canberra Film Contest

August 15, 2014

Jennifer Erchinger, Jose Trevino, Timothy Jacomb-Hood, Manit Shah and Micheal Smith, nuclear engineering graduate students working with NSSPI faculty member Dr. Craig Marianno, won first place at the Canberra University Video Challenge. Their video highlights examples of students using Canberra products in their classes and research in radiation detection. A variety of products are shown as students scan a box for a hidden source, a variation of one of the laboratory exercises. The research focus of the video demonstrates a radiation portal monitor used for screening livestock ...
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NSSPI Hosts Interns from the Tomsk Polytechnic University in Russia

December 13, 2012

From October 1 to December, NSSPI hosted two student interns from the Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) in Tomsk, Russia.  Denis Tatarnikov and Dmitry Prokopyev spent their internship at NSSPI conducting research in nuclear security and nuclear forensics under a project sponsored by the National Nuclear Security Administration's Office of Material Protection, Control, and Accounting and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.  The Tomsk students not only conducted substantive research projects during their time at NSSPI, producing a detailed report and presentation, bu...
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NEUP Awards Featured on Local News

May 11, 2012

The NEUP research projects awarded to the TAMU Nuclear Engineering Department this week by the US Department of Energy were featured in a news segment that aired on KRHD, a local ABC affiliate located in Bryan-College Station. The segment focused on the project led by Associate Professor Dr. Sean McDeavitt on which NSSPI Director Dr. William Charlton is also a collaborator. ...
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NSSPI Part of Team Selected for NEUP R&D Award

May 9, 2012

On May 8, 2012 Secretary of Energy Steven Chu announced more than $47 million in scholarships, fellowships, research grants, and university reactor upgrades.   NSSPI Director Dr. William Charlton is a collaborator on one of the research projects selected to receive funding under the Nuclear Energy University Programs (NEUP) awards for FY2012. The project, led by TAMU-NE Associate Professor Dr. Sean McDeavitt, is titled "Prototype Demonstration of Gamma-Blind Tensioned Metastable Fluid Neutron / Multiplicity / Alpha Detector - Real Time Methods for Advanced Fuel Cycle App...
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Goodsell Wins Session Award at ANS Student Conference

April 23, 2012

NSSPI student Alison Goodsell was awarded the Isotopes and Radiation Session Award at the 2012 American Nuclear Society (ANS) Student Conference, which was held April 12-15 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Goodsell presented research on the use of a quartz-crystal x-ray spectrometer to improve the detection of the Pu and U x-ray peaks in spent fuel by reducing the Compton background.  The overall scope of the presentation was on the design process for the quartz crystal and the customized tungsten collimator system. ...
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NSSPI Researchers Hit the Field

April 5, 2012

 This week health physics researchers from the nation's largest nuclear engineering department are teaming up with the largest animal science department to examine how pedestrian radiation portals can be used to identify contamination on cattle following a radiological event.  The tests they will be performing are part of a project funded by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to fill a technology gap that has become even more crucial in light of the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant in Japan...
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Nelson Receives Two Awards from the NEUP

September 29, 2011

Dr. Paul Nelson, NSSPI Associate Director for International Programs, was awarded over $1.1 million in research grants from the Department of Energy's Nuclear Engineering University Program (NEUP). The projects chosen for award were "Improved Safety Margin Characterization of Risk from Loss of Offsite Power" and "Correlates of Sensitive Technologies." For the first project, Dr. Nelson will be working with NSSPI faculty member Dr. Sunil Chirayath, along with Ernie J. Kee and Shawn S. Rodgers of the South Texas Nuclear Project Operating Company's Risk Management group.  They...
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NSF-DNDO Academic Research Initiative to Fund NSSPI Research on Plutonium Signatures

September 19, 2011

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has chosen a project proposed by NSSPI faculty member, Dr. Sunil Chirayath, along with Dr. David Boyle, NSSPI Deputy Director, and Dr. Charles M. Folden, III, of the TAMU Cyclotron Institute, to receive an award under the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO) Academic Research Initiative. The award in the amount of $378,464 is for the first year of a multi-year project to assess whether or not it is possible to reliably predict and measure a unique, intrinsic physical signature in weapons-grade plutonium produced in reactors of foreign nuclea...
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SHIELD Researchers Take Measurements at the Port of Tacoma

September 13, 2011

From August 26 -30, NSSPI faculty member Dr. Craig Marianno and Dr. Sunil Khatri from the TAMU Department of Electrical Engineering, along with NSSPI graduate students Matthew Grypp and Gentry Hearn, traveled to the Port of Tacoma to conduct gamma measurement experiments at the port's Rail Test Center. This work is part of the multi-disciplinary SHIELD (Smuggled HEU Interdiction through Enhanced anaLysis and Detection) project, and the data collected will aid researchers in developing detector systems to be used in border monitoring, specifically in detecting radiological materials ...
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RAP-NIS Student Research Symposium Brings Together Students from the US and Russia

August 17, 2011

NSSPI students and staff traveled to the Labor Spiez in Switzerland from July 25-27 for the Russian Academic Program in Nonproliferation and International Security (RAP-NIS) Student Research Symposium. The Student Research Symposium allows students from the US and Russia to share their graduate research and build professional relationships.  NSSPI students Roushan Ghanbari and Travis Gitau joined students from Moscow Engineering and Physics Institute (MEPhI) and the Obninsk Institute for Nuclear Power Engineering (IATE), both institutes of the Russian National Researc...
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Goddard and Ryan Perform Neutron Measurements at the Joint Research Center

December 21, 2010

Nuclear Security Science and Policy (NSSPI) Graduate Assistant Researchers, Braden Goddard and Chris Ryan, traveled to the European Commission Joint Research Center (JRC) in Ispra, Italy from December 4 through December 11, 2010, to perform neutron measurements in support of Goddard's Ph.D. research.  The objective of the measurements was to detect neutrons in coincidence using an International Atomic Energy Association (IAEA) approved Active Well Coincidence Counter (AWCC).  The material measured consisted of uranium, plutonium, and mixed-oxide in different isotopic con...
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