NCSU Nuclear Engineering Department Welcome Four New Assistant Professors

The Nuclear Engineering Department at NC State is excited to announce that four new faculty will be joining the department as tenure-track Assistant Professors in the upcoming academic year.

Dr. Benjamin Beeler is presently employed as a computational scientist in the Computational Microstructure Science group in the Fuels Modeling and Simulation department at Idaho National Laboratory. His degrees are in nuclear engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology (B.S. 2008, M.S. 2011, Ph.D. 2013). He completed his postdoctoral appointment jointly at the University of California-Davis and the University of California-Berkeley. His professional interests are atomistic description and evolution of nuclear fuel and structural materials. He has extensive experience on interatomic potential development, particularly related to uranium and uranium-alloys.

Dr. Mihai Diaconeasa is currently a Postdoctoral Research Scholar at UCLA. He obtained his B.Sc. degree from University College Utrecht (UCU), the international undergraduate honors college of Utrecht University, the Netherlands, his M.S. degree in Nuclear Science and Engineering from MIT, and his Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from UCLA. He is currently working on developing a new hybrid static-dynamic probabilistic risk assessment software platform for nuclear power plants. He also leads the development of the Hybrid Causal Logic Analyzer system risk and reliability software used to assess the commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) parts usage in Space Systems for extended deep space missions at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and the Phoenix human reliability analysis methodology and software for Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA).

At present, Dr. Jason Hou serves the Department of Nuclear Engineering as a Research Assistant Professor. Prior to joining NCSU as a Research Assistant Professor, Dr. Hou was a Postdoctoral Scholar at University of California, Berkeley. He earned his Ph.D. from The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Jason Hou is an advocate of nuclear energy and the mission of his research is to promote nuclear energy by investigating advanced reactor designs and developing improved reactor modeling and simulation methods. In particular, he develops accurate yet efficient numerical models to improve the reactor design in various aspects, including the economics, safety, proliferation resistance and sustainability.

Dr. Xu Wu is currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering at MIT. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China in 2011. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in Nuclear Engineering in 2017 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Wu’s research interests include: Uncertainty and Sensitivity Analysis, Reduced Order Modeling, model selection and validation, stochastic modeling and inference, Machine Learning, etc. He was the winner of the best paper of the ANS “Young Professional Thermal Hydraulics Research Competition” in 2017. He was selected as the “Russell Heath Distinguished Postdoc” by the Idaho National Laboratory in 2018.