Newswise — OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 13, 2014 – Some of the nation’s foremost authorities on nuclear energy will be at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory Wednesday and Thursday for a Nuclear Energy Institute industry fact-finding mission.

Participants will be briefed on some of the latest ORNL research, including advanced simulations for extended reactor operations and materials aging.

NEI members and representatives from universities and industry will have a chance to meet ORNL scientists and tour some of the nation’s premier facilities, including the Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors ( They will also tour the Spallation Neutron Source (, the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility ( and the High Flux Isotope Reactor ( Also on the agenda is a visit to Watts Bar Nuclear Plant and the historic Graphite Reactor.

“These meetings are invaluable to ensure that scientists, engineers, academia and policymakers work together to take full advantage of the nation’s considerable talents and resources,” said Leslie Barbour, NEI’s director of Federal Programs-Appropriations. “With its rich history and impressive capabilities in nuclear energy, ORNL provides the perfect backdrop for this annual meeting.”

Since its early days as part of the Manhattan Project, ORNL has been a leader in nuclear science and technology. Today, the breadth of the laboratory’s nuclear expertise extends from fission and fusion energy to medical isotopes and from advanced modeling and simulation to nuclear nonproliferation.

ORNL’s Nuclear Science and Engineering Directorate has a staff of about 500 and an annual budget of $450 million. More than half the staff hold advanced degrees in fields related to nuclear science and engineering. The NSED is led by Alan Icenhour, associate lab director and an adjunct professor of nuclear engineering at the University of Tennessee.

UT-Battelle manages ORNL for the Department of Energy’s Office of Science. DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of the time. For more information, please visit


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