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"The Renaissance of Nuclear Power: An Energy Source for the Future" is Free Public Lecture on 23 February 2008

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"The Renaissance of Nuclear Power: An Energy Source of the Future" is a free public lecture that will be given on 23 February 2008 by Jack Brenizer, chair of nuclear engineering and professor of mechanical and nuclear engineering at Penn State. The event is the fifth of six lectures in the 2008 Penn State Lectures on the Frontiers of Science, which has the theme this year of "Running on Empty?: Strategies for Our Energy Future." This free minicourse for the general public consists of six lectures concerning current research on various energy options and the environmental consequences of their use. No registration is required. The lectures take place on six consecutive Saturday mornings from 11:00 a.m. to about 12:30 p.m. in 100 Thomas Building on the Penn State University Park campus.

Brenizer will discuss the world's renewed interest in nuclear power, the safety and reliability features of new power-plant designs, and why next-generation nuclear energy is more attractive to both domestic and international energy suppliers. "The once commonly held perception that nuclear energy is dead or dying is changing and, in truth, nuclear power is growing," Brenizer said.

Brenizer's research has focused on radiation detection, neutron radiography, and neutron activation analysis. He also has worked on research involving aerogel materials and monitoring of nuclear-test-ban treaties. He has published or presented over 100 papers on these topics and is a member of several professional societies, including the American Nuclear Society, Health Physics Society, Sigma Xi, American Society for Nondestructive Testing, American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) International, American Society of Engineering Education, and International Society for Optical Engineering. He is a board member of the International Society for Neutron Radiography and is the current chairman of the ASTM International's Committee E07 on Nondestructive Testing.

As Penn State chair of nuclear engineering and professor of mechanical and nuclear engineering, Brenizer was the first recipient of the J. 'Lee' Everett Professorship in Engineering, which provides support to a member of the mechanical and nuclear engineering faculty for teaching, research, and service. Brenizer also received the Penn State Engineering Society Distinguished Service Award in 2006 and the American Society for Testing and Materials E07 Charles W. Briggs Award in 1997.

Prior to joining the faculty at Penn State in 1999, Brenizer was on the faculty of the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Virginia from 1981 through 1998. He earned a bachelor's degree in physics at Shippensburg State College in 1972, a master's degree in engineering science at Penn State in 1977, and a doctoral degree in nuclear engineering at Penn State in 1981.

The Penn State Lectures on the Frontiers of Science are a program of the Penn State Eberly College of Science that the college has provided annually since 1995. The 2008 series is sponsored jointly by the Eberly College of Science and the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences. Financial support for the 2008 lectures is provided by a gift from the Chevron Corporation and by the Penn State Eberly College of Science.

For access assistance, contact the Eberly College of Science Office of Public Information by telephone at (814) 863-0901 or by e-mail at science@psu.edu. A recording of this lecture will be archived on the Web at a link on he homepage for the 2008 Penn State Lectures on the Frontiers of Science, http://www.science.psu.edu/alert/frontiers/.

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