Nuclear Energy: A Sustainable Source in the Energy Mix
On Thursday, December 7, 2023, from 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. CST (GMT -6:00) in the Forum at the Rudder Theatre Complex on the campus of Texas A&M University, the Texas A&M Energy Institute will host a The Texas A&M Energy Institute Annual Distinguished Lecture by Dr. Yassin A. Hassan, a Regents Professor, University Distinguished Professor, a Professor of Nuclear Engineering and Mechanical Engineering, the L.F. Peterson ’36 Chair II Professor, and the Director of the Center for Advanced Small Modular and Microreactors (CASMR) at Texas A&M University. The topic will be “Nuclear Energy: A Sustainable Source in the Energy Mix.”
The deployment of advanced nuclear power plants supplements the mix of energy generation technologies. Advanced reactors serve as powerful tools in the global efforts against climate change, capable of generating immense amounts of clean energy with less adverse ecological impacts. Nuclear energy provides a consistent and reliable power source, unaffected by external and environmental factors such as weather conditions. This sustainable yet reliable power generation can assist in stabilizing the energy grid while ensuring a consistent zero-carbon energy source. Industry, such as chemical, petrochemical, agriculture, and steel, require a high level of energy input, particularly heat, for their operations. Advanced reactors, especially high-temperature reactors, can provide the necessary heat. Furthermore, advanced reactors can be used for large-scale, efficient hydrogen production via high-temperature electrolysis or thermochemical water splitting. Hydrogen produced is green or clean hydrogen because it does not produce greenhouse gas emissions during generation. The contributions of advanced nuclear reactors such as Small Modular Reactors and Microreactors will assist toward societal and technological goals for the preservation and sustenance of our environment. By diversifying our energy portfolio with nuclear energy, we can significantly reduce carbon emissions, ensure a reliable and uninterrupted energy supply, and facilitate the transition to a greener future.
A variety of research topics related to pressurized water, molten salts, liquid metal, and heat pipe reactors, generating valuable data and insights to expedite the rollout of advanced reactors will be presented. Additionally, a key role in creating essential components for integrating reactors into renewable energy systems depends on our entire ecosystem of high-temperature thermal storage systems, heat exchangers, and infrastructure to building and more connected energy sources (natural gas, wind/solar, geothermal, chemical, hydrogen, nuclear) will be presented. The seminar will introduce the research work and intriguing test bed experiments conducted at the Center of Small Modular and Microreactors.
Yassin Hassan is University Distinguished Professor, Regents Professor, and the L.F. Peterson ’36 Chair II in Engineering. He is a professor in the Department of Nuclear Engineering and the J. Mike Walker ’66 Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M University. He is the Director of the Center for Advanced Small Modular and Microreactors (CASMR).
Before joining Texas A&M in September 1986, he worked for seven years at Nuclear Power Division, Babcock & Wilcox Company, Lynchburg, Virginia. His research is in computational and experimental thermal hydraulics and advanced nuclear reactors.
He is a Member of the US National Academy of Engineering and a Member of the Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science ofTexas, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Nuclear Society (ANS), and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). His awards include the 2008 American Nuclear Society Seaborg Medal, the 2003 George Westinghouse Gold Medal award, the 2004 Thermal Hydraulics Technical Achievement Award, the 2003 Arthur Holly Compton Award of the American Nuclear Society, and the 2017 James N. Landis Medal of the American Society of Mechanical. He is a member of the Slovenian Academy of Engineering. He also received the 2022 Fluid Engineering Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
He is appointed a member of the Civil Nuclear Trade Advisory by Honorable Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo. He is the recipientof the 2020 Grainger College of Engineering, University of Illinois Alumni Distinguished Award. Hassan was sworn in in 2007 as a part-time technical judge to the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board Panel, US Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
He has authored more than 580 refereed publications in technical journals and conference proceedings (265 technical journals and 324 conferences) and more than 420 summaries in American Nuclear Society Transactions (the largest for any ANS member since its establishment in 1950. He received his master’s and a doctorate in nuclear engineering from the University of Illinois and a master’s in mechanical engineering from the University of Virginia.
65 Ph.D. graduate students advised and graduated (Major Advisor); 116 MS students advised and graduated (Major Advisor) and 20 Post-docs and international scholars and 32 Student Exchange and Internship students