UT Student Team Wins National Nuclear Design Contest

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — A team of undergraduate nuclear engineering students from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville has won a national student design contest sponsored by the American Nuclear Society.

Dr. H.L. Dodds, UT-Knoxville nuclear engineering professor and team supervisor, said UT has finished first or second in 19 of the last 20 ANS graduate and undergraduate competitions.

“Each year, UT students are recognized among the best nuclear engineering design students in the nation,” Dodds said. “We are very proud of our students’ talent and hard work, which has resulted in this very distinguished honor from the ANS.”

The UT team members are: Nicholas Brown of Dawson Spring, Ky.; David Gore of Lancaster, S.C.; Wes Hooper of Hendersonville, Tenn.; Stephanie Newman of Clinton, Tenn.; and Scott Snowden of Mosheim, Tenn.

The team’s design examines the potential for nuclear power plants to be fueled by materials such as plutonium and actinide from dismantled nuclear weapons and other sources, Dodds said.

Student teams from Georgia Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, North Carolina State University and Purdue University also competed. Second place went to MIT, which had three times as many members as the UT team.

Dr. John Graham, ANS president, credited much of the UT program’s success to Dodds.

“I believe a number of generations of UT nuclear engineering students will point back to H.L. Dodds as a teacher who made a telling difference in their lives,” Graham said. “He is making things happen by helping students look beyond the close focus of passing examinations and making them compete in the wider realm of science and technology.

“I would like to congratulate UT on an outstanding record of participation and success in the ANS Student Design Competition over the years.”

“UT is a perennial top-finisher against a consistently strong field of competition,” said Dr. Rich Christensen, nuclear engineering professor at Ohio State University and ANS competition director. “They are very deserving of the award they received.”

Contact: Dr. H.L. Dodds (423-974-2525)

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