Bowman & Smith on NRC security programs

May 31, 2024, 3:04PMNuclear News
The NRC's Greg Bowman (left) and George Smith. (Photos: NRC)

Greg Bowman and George Smith work for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in implementing programs that deal with risk, whether to nuclear power plants or from nuclear materials, such as radiological sabotage and theft or diversion of materials. Bowman is the director of the NRC’s Division of Physical and Cybersecurity Policy in the Office of Nuclear Security and Incident Response. Smith is the senior project manager for security in the Source Management & Protection Branch of the Division of Materials Safety, Security, State, and Tribal Programs in the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards.

The three initiatives Bowman and Smith discussed with Nuclear News editor-in-chief Rick Michal are the Insider Threat Program, the Cybersecurity Program, and the Domestic Safeguards Program.

Nagra refutes involvement with transmutation tech start-up

May 31, 2024, 11:59AMRadwaste Solutions
Transmutex’s transmutation reactor. (Image: Transmutex)

Switzerland’s national cooperative for the disposal of radioactive waste, Nagra, is distancing itself from recent reports regarding the work of the Geneva-based engineering start-up Transmutex, which claims to have developed a new technology for the transmutation of radioactive waste.

Halil Avci: ANS member since 1978

May 31, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News

. . . and today.

Halil Avci in 1975 . . .

We welcome ANS members who have careered in the community to submit their own Nuclear Legacy stories, so that the personal history of nuclear power can be captured. For information on submitting your stories, contact

For me, going into nuclear engineering was an adventure. In 1968, as a 17-year-old in a small village in western Turkey, I took a government exam designed to select students to send abroad for college. I had to pick a major and a country before the exam, so I picked nuclear engineering and America because they both seemed exciting and full of potential. I came to the United States with the intent to obtain my bachelor’s degree and return to Turkey without delay, because I was told that I was needed to work on the construction of Turkey’s first nuclear power plant starting in 1974. That nuclear plant project did not materialize as planned, nor did I return to Turkey as expected.

Duke partnering with Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Nucor on energy security

May 30, 2024, 3:00PMNuclear News
Photo: Duke Energy

Duke Energy announced agreements yesterday with Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Nucor to accelerate clean energy deployments in the Carolinas through a new rate structure proposal.

The company signed memoradums of understanding this month that include proposed Accelerating Clean Energy (ACE) tariffs that would help offset the long-term costs of investing in clean energy technologies, such as new nuclear and energy storage, through early commitments. Duke announced its partnership with the tech and utility giants at this week’s White House Summit on Domestic Nuclear Deployment aimed at strengthening the U.S. nuclear industry.

Savannah River Site's one-of-a-kind transporter makes pit stop

May 30, 2024, 9:30AMRadwaste Solutions
The Savannah River Site’s shielded canister transporter. (Photo: DOE)

The large vehicle used to transport highly radioactive canisters at the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site has completed a pit stop to ensure the continued movement of the site’s radioactive liquid waste work.

Dirty bombs: The terror and the truth

May 30, 2024, 7:00AMNuclear NewsJames Conca

James Conca

The term “dirty bomb” surfaces occasionally, usually in the context of nuclear waste, which, while understandable, is incorrect.

Dirty bombs, or radiation dispersal devices (RDDs), use conventional methods like car bombs to disperse radioactive materials in populated economic districts, such as lower Manhattan. The point is to cause great economic and social disruption disproportionate to the actual radiological effects—and well beyond the physical destruction from the conventional bomb components.

Society’s irrational fear of radiation makes the dirty bomb an ultimate weapon of terror. But it is a psychological weapon, not a nuclear one. The public should not be any more afraid of a dirty bomb than they are of an ordinary car bomb.


Biden launches nuclear power projects working group in push to deployment

May 29, 2024, 3:00PMNuclear News

Nuclear energy advocates attended a White House summit today on domestic nuclear deployment and will help advise a new federal initiative to support building new grid-scale nuclear reactors.

The event showcased recent policy developments and new industry investments that have changed the playing field—for the better—for nuclear during the past few years. The White House is calling it “the largest sustained push to accelerate civil nuclear deployment in the United States in nearly five decades.”

Oklo, Wyoming Hyperscale partner for data center energy

May 29, 2024, 12:01PMNuclear News
Oklo’s Aurora Powerhouse (Image: Gensler)

California-based Oklo is partnering with Wyoming Hyperscale to power a state-of-the-art data center campus.

The companies, which announced the partnership last week, signed a nonbinding letter of intent to provide 100 megawatts of carbon-free energy for a 20-year power purchase agreement. Wyoming Hyperscale is building a data center on 58 acres of land on Aspen Mountain, a remote site southeast of Evanston, Wyo., and plans to use Oklo’s Aurora Powerhouse units to provide clean energy at the site.

Framatome to install new pipe liner at U.S. plant

May 29, 2024, 9:30AMANS Nuclear Cafe
Framatome’s spray liner rehabilitates buried piping and underground components. (Photo: Framatome)

Framatome was recently awarded a multimillion-dollar contract to perform mitigation of buried condenser feed pipes at a three-unit nuclear power plant in the United States.

The France-based nuclear company plans to install spray-in-place structural pipe liner to mitigate more than one mile of large diameter underground piping connected to plant condenser boxes. The project will be performed during nine outages over eight years, with the first application planned for fall 2025.

DOE ready to consider Russian U ban waivers

May 29, 2024, 7:01AMNuclear News

Utilities need to know months ahead of a scheduled refueling outage that fresh fuel will be on-site and ready to load. Now that the Prohibiting Russian Uranium Imports Act has been signed into law, U.S. utilities with plans to use Russian-origin low-enriched uranium also need to know if they can secure a waiver for imports through December 31, 2027—subject to specific annual limits—if “no alternative viable source of [LEU] is available to sustain the continued operation of a nuclear reactor or a United States nuclear energy company” or if LEU imports from Russia are “in the national interest.”

Retirees and older pros return to the nuclear industry

May 28, 2024, 2:58PMANS Nuclear Cafe

The U.K.-based Financial Times recently featured an article focusing on the return of retirees and the extending of professional careers in the nuclear industry in Western countries. According to the article, “the nuclear power industry is seeking to lure back thousands of retired engineers and older professionals as Western companies try to fill a skills gap to deliver the biggest wave of new projects in decades.”

U.K. announces new site for mega-nuclear power station

May 28, 2024, 12:00PMNuclear News

The United Kingdom has announced a northern Wales site as its preferred location for a third mega-nuclear power station as the nation aims to support long-term energy security.

Following its plans to build nuclear facilities at Hinkley in Somerset and Sizewell in Suffolk, both in England, U.K. officials hope to revive the nuclear history of Wylfa, in Wales, and bring thousands of jobs and major investment to the area. The government is kickstarting talks with global energy firms in hopes of building a nuclear plant in Wylfa that could provide enough energy to power 6 million homes for 60 years.

Americium-241 heat source planned for Mars rover in a space exploration first

May 28, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News
Concept art of ESA’s Rosalind Franklin rover. (Image: ESA/ATG medialab)

Europe’s first Mars rover—named Rosalind Franklin—was months away from a planned September launch when the European Space Agency (ESA) convened a meeting a few weeks after Russia’s February 2022 invasion of Ukraine. The ESA Council unanimously agreed on “the present impossibility” of working with Roscosmos as its launch partner and later decided to reboot its ExoMars mission with a new lander, new partners, and a new launch date.

Nuclear security workforce development

May 24, 2024, 3:02PMNuclear NewsSara A. Pozzi

Ensuring that nuclear technology is used exclusively for peaceful purposes remains a critical challenge for our society today. The global community faces several grave nuclear security threats: nations that attempt to create (such as Iran) or augment (such as Russia, China, and North Korea) their nuclear arsenals, acts of aggression that target civilian nuclear reactors (as seen with Russia in Ukraine), and the looming menace of nuclear weapons deployment (emanating from Russia). Furthermore, addressing climate change necessitates an expansion of nuclear energy for electricity generation, which brings with it the need for safeguarding and regulating the deployment of advanced reactors.

NRC accepts TerraPower’s SMR construction permit

May 24, 2024, 12:00PMNuclear News
A rendering of the Natrium plant. (Image: Terrapower)

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has formally accepted TerraPower’s small modular reactor construction permit application and is scheduling it for review.

The company’s Natrium reactor demonstration project—the nation’s first commercial advanced reactor of its kind—would be built on land in Wyoming near one of the state’s retiring coal plants. Kemmerer Power Station Unit 1 would operate as a 345-MW sodium-cooled reactor in conjunction with molten salt–based energy storage.

Constellation chief doesn’t rule out Three Mile Island restart

May 24, 2024, 9:34AMNuclear News
An aerial photo of the three mile island nuclear power station. (Photo: Constellation)

On the company’s earnings call this month, Constellation CEO Joe Dominguez was asked if there is a possibility of restarting the shuttered Three Mile Island plant—as is being proposed for the Palisades nuclear plant in Michigan.

“We’re not unaware that opportunity exists for us,” Dominguez said. “We’re obviously seen what’s happened with Palisades and I think that was brilliant. Brilliant for the nation. … We are doing a good bit of thinking about a number of different opportunities, and that would probably certainly be one of those that we would think about.”

Kyoto Fusioneering and CNL form fusion development joint venture

May 24, 2024, 6:53AMNuclear News
FFC board members (from left to right) Kiyoshi Seko (KF), Stephen Bushby (CNL), Satoshi Konishi (KF), and Ian Castillo (CNL) in Tokyo, Japan.

Japan’s Kyoto Fusioneering, a fusion startup spun out from Kyoto University, and Canadian Nuclear Laboratories have announced the formation of Fusion Fuel Cycles Inc., headquartered in Chalk River, Ontario, Canada. The joint venture extends a strategic alliance formed between the two entities in September 2023 and aims to develop and deploy deuterium-tritium (D-T) fusion fuel cycle technologies.