ANS Board of Directors votes to retire outdated position statements

The American Nuclear Society’s Board of Directors on November 19 voted to retire several outdated position statements, as requested by the Public Policy Committee. Among them are Position Statements #37 and #63, dating from 2010, which have been retired for lacking policy recommendations and for being redundant, as other position statements exist with language that better articulates the Society’s stance on those topics.

2020 ANS Virtual Winter Meeting: ANS honors more award recipients during President’s Special Session

American Nuclear Society President Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar recognized four Presidential Citation recipients and the Milton Levenson Distinguished Service Award winner on November 18 during the 2020 ANS Virtual Winter Meeting. The following awards were presented as part of the ANS President’s Special Session.

Apply online now for 2021-22 ANS scholarships

The American Nuclear Society supports more than 50 college students each year with annual scholarships of more than $140,000 awarded through its Scholarship Program. The program offers both achievement-based and financial need-based scholarships to ANS student members made possible by the generosity of ANS professional divisions, local sections, and individual donors.

Applications for the 2021-2022 academic year are now available. All ANS student members are encouraged to apply. Recipients will be awarded between $1,000-$5,000 based on merit and financial need.

Completing the General Scholarship Application qualifies students for consideration for more than 24 ANS scholarships. To increase the chances of receiving a scholarship, explore the various opportunities established by the ANS divisions and local sections. Many of these require answers to only a few extra questions to qualify.

Check out the Before You Apply information for guidance throughout the application process.

ANS Virtual Winter Meeting gets under way

With the theme “Nuclear is Good for You,” the 2020 ANS Virtual Winter Meeting kicks off on November 16 with the opening plenary session. The plenary features two keynote speakers—Alex Epstein, of the Center for Industrial Progress, and Jessica Lovering, of the Good Energy Collective—in a discussion about why nuclear is the right choice for the benefit of all humankind.

The Winter Meeting features more than 35 panel sessions, 100-plus technical sessions, and more than 440 paper presentations.

More than 2,100 registrants have already signed up. That tops the preregistration total of 1,700 for the 2020 ANS Virtual Annual Meeting, which was the largest ANS meeting in modern history.

If you haven’t registered yet, do so now! Registration is open through Thursday, November 19.

ANS WISE program seeks 2021 applicants

ANS student members are encouraged to apply to the Washington Internships for Students of Engineering (WISE) program for the opportunity to spend next summer exploring the intersection of technology and policy in Washington, D.C.

“WISE provides a unique opportunity for ANS student members to learn about how our government deals with technologically complex issues,” said ANS Fellow and WISE program coordinator Alan Levin. “Past interns have said that the program is a challenging and enjoyable experience that gave them new perspectives on engineering and government; for some, the program influenced their choice of post-graduate study and/or career.”

B. John Garrick, pioneer in development and application of risk sciences, passes away


B. John Garrick, ANS Fellow and member since 1956 and an international authority on quantitative risk assessment, died on November 1 due to complications from a fall. He was 90.

Garrick, a distinguished adjunct professor of materials science and engineering at the University of California at Los Angeles, established his trailblazing theory on risk sciences in his Ph.D. thesis, which contributed to building the foundation of probabilistic risk assessment. Also referred to as quantitative risk assessment, it offers a guide to corrective actions to eliminate threats and to best practices for managing low-probability, high-consequence events resulting from natural and man-made disasters.

Letter from the CEO

Do we have enough “People of Nuclear”?

Craig Piercy

This month’s issue of Nuclear News focuses on the People of Nuclear and what it means to be a member of the “Fellowship of the Atom.”

The nuclear science and technology (S&T) community in the United States and around the world has had a tumultuous existence since the early days of Curie, Fermi, and Rickover. As one friend puts it, “I’ve seen the demise of nuclear four different times, but we’re still here.”

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president's Column

Is nuclear scalable and sustainable?

Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar

In the August issue of Nuclear News, I asked if you’ve ever wondered why nuclear isn’t commonly considered the choice for clean power production. In that and subsequent columns, I provided some information about the cleanliness, safety, and reliability of nuclear for your use in everyday conversation as you make the case for this clean energy source. This month, let’s tackle the scalable and sustainable aspects of nuclear.

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Nuclear Science Week: the ANS local and student sections events

Nuclear Science Week (NSW) is a celebration designed to focus local, regional, national, and international interest on all aspects of nuclear science. National events marking the 11th annual NSW took place October 19–23 in Washington, D.C. This year’s theme was “Think Clean. Think Solutions. Think Nuclear.”

Several ANS local and student sections from around the world organized their own events to celebrate NSW, as follows:

Nuclear science research highlights from 2020

Frequently the three international research journals published by ANS dedicate issues to special topics or selected top papers presented at conferences. In celebration of Nuclear Science Week, here’s a recap of the research highlights published by Nuclear Science and Engineering (NSE), Nuclear Technology (NT), and Fusion Science and Technology (FST) in 2020 (ANS members get free subscriber access):

Elementary school resources added to Navigating Nuclear

Elementary school lesson plans are the latest additions to the Navigating Nuclear: Energizing Our World website. The two lesson plans were created to help students in grades 3-5 understand the power of the atom and how to investigate different energy sources.

Navigating Nuclear is a K-12 nuclear science and energy curriculum created in partnership by the American Nuclear Society and Discovery Education, with lead funding from the Department of Energy's Office of Nuclear Energy.

Nuclear in K-12 education: Overview of ANS toolkit and reflections from educators

A free webinar today from 3:00 p.m.-4:30 p.m. (EDT) will look at the resources that the American Nuclear Society has developed with Discovery Education and the Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy to help K-12 educators teach nuclear science and technology.

The webinar will begin with an overview of the resources, followed by reflections and commentary from three educators of various grade levels on their experiences teaching nuclear science and their thoughts about ANS’s instructional materials. The webinar will conclude with a Q&A session with the panelists.

Registration is required for this Nuclear Science Week event.

ANS celebrates Nuclear Science Week with social media campaign, new RIPB webpage

The nuclear industry has embraced the risk-informed and performance-based (RIPB) decision-making process over the past two decades. Still, it remains a complex concept to explain in lay terms.

With that in mind, the American Nuclear Society will be kicking off an RIPB awareness social media campaign as part of Nuclear Science Week 2020, which begins today and runs through Friday. The campaign will link decision making to everyday events in a person's life and feature a series of images and seemingly easy questions requiring a choice to be made. For example, ANS asks, “Would you get rid of your car if the radio didn’t work?” or “Would you toss a lamp if the shade was dirty?”

ANS Student Sections virtual 5K fundraising event nears completion

There is still time to participate in the “Nuclear Power: Let’s Keep it Running” 5K virtual run fundraiser sponsored by the ANS Student Sections Committee. The virtual 5K is designed to raise awareness about safe, clean, and reliable nuclear energy and to enrich the experiences of students in nuclear science and technology.

The campaign has raised more than $2,500 and consists of an online donation platform where student sections can form teams, organize runs, and connect to donors within their communities and throughout the country.

Letter from the CEO

Calling balls and strikes

Craig Piercy

As a not-for-profit scientific and professional organization, the American Nuclear Society’s raison d’être has always been the advancement of nuclear science and technology. While many among our diverse ranks may see themselves as advocates, it is important to recognize that ANS the organization will never take the place of industry trade associations like the Nuclear Energy Institute or the U.S. Nuclear Infrastructure Council. No, we will always be dedicated first to serving the men and women of the nuclear community, both here in the United States and around the world, as a source of news, technical knowledge, professional development opportunities, and scientific fellowship.

This should not in any way dissuade us, however—either individually or as a community—from engaging in the public discussion about nuclear technology, especially when debates become tainted by outright falsehoods or “fake news.” As we have seen in stark relief over the past eight months of pandemic-dominated life, the scientific community has a societal obligation to stand up and set the record straight when misinformation crops up. Simply put, we have to be prepared to call balls and strikes.

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President's Column

The cost of unreliability

Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar

In the September issue of Nuclear News, I asked if you’ve ever wondered why nuclear isn’t commonly considered the choice for clean power production. In that column and in August’s, I provided some information about the cleanliness and safety of nuclear for your use as you make the case for this clean energy source to friends and neighbors. This month, let’s talk reliability.

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Candidates nominated for 2021 ANS national election

Candidates have been named to fill seven ANS leadership positions with terms beginning in June 2021.



The candidates for a one-year term as vice president/president-elect are Steven A. Arndt and Corey McDaniel. Arndt, ANS Fellow and member since 1981, is a senior technical advisor with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and McDaniel, ANS member since 2008, is chief commercial officer and director of industry engagement at Idaho National Laboratory.

The elected candidate will succeed current ANS Vice President/President-Elect Steven Nesbit in June 2021, when Nesbit becomes president.