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NC State Nuclear Engineering Virtual Distinguished Technical Lecture

April 29 @ 4:00 pm - 5:15 pm

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2021 Distinguished Technical Virtual Lecture
Thursday, April 29, 2021
4:00 – 5:15 pm EDT
Opportunities and Challenges for Use of
Advanced Materials & Manufacturing in Nuclear Power Systems
Dr. Steven Zinkle
Governor’s Chair for Nuclear Materials & Professor

Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of Tennessee – Knoxville


During the development of the first nuclear power systems in the 1950s, engineers generally selected the most advanced high-performance materials that were commercially available in order to meet the daunting (and largely undiscovered) potential challenges associated with safe and economical nuclear power. These wise choices largely served nuclear power needs well from “Generation I” to “Generation III” water cooled reactor systems. Looking ahead to potential materials and manufacturing options for new reactors (Generation III+ or Generation IV fission reactors), key decisions need to be made whether to continue to use traditional nuclear qualified materials (many of which are reaching the point of obsolescence in the broader structural materials industry) or to transition to the use of new high-performance materials. Several of the technical and nontechnical factors involved in this decision-making process will be discussed, along with the potential consequences involved in each pathway.

Steven Zinkle is the Governor’s Chair for Nuclear Materials and Professor of Nuclear Engineering at the University of Tennessee – Knoxville. His research areas include physical metallurgy of structural materials; ion and neutron irradiation effects on the microstructure, physical and mechanical properties of metals and ceramics; fusion and fission reactor materials; and, deformation and fracture mechanisms.
Dr. Zinkle is currently the senior editor for the Journal of Nuclear Materials, member of the National Academy of Engineering, member of the National Academies National Materials and Manufacturing Board (NMMB), member of the National Academies Condensed Matter and Materials Research Committee. Some of his recognitions include the ASM International Gold medal (2018), TMS Robert Franklin Mehl award and Institute of Metals lecture (2017), Fusion Power Associates Leadership Award (2016), ANS Mishima Award (2007), and the US Department of Energy (DOE) Ernest Orlando Lawrence Memorial Award (Nuclear Technology, 2006).


He received his degrees from the University of Wisconsin, Madison WI – PhD in Nuclear Engineering with a minor in Physics (1985), Master of Science in Material Science (1985), Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering (1982), and a Bachelor of Science in Nuclear Engineering (1980).


April 29
4:00 pm - 5:15 pm
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