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Transforming Energy Lecture Series Sponsored by the Univ. of Maryland Energy Research Center
Friday, November 30, 2012
3:00 p.m.
Room 1202, Glenn L. Martin Hall
For More Information:
Annette Mateus
301 405 4799

Dr. John E. Kelly, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Nuclear Reactor Technologies, Office of Nuclear Energy, DOE

"Analysis of the Accident at Fukushima”


The devastating earthquake and tsunami, which resulted in the accident at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, occurred on March 11, 2011. The Department of Energy and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in collaboration with national laboratories, nuclear industry and Japanese entities recently completed an effort to analyze the available data and observations from the Fukushima accident. Dr. Kelly's talk will focus on the results of this analysis to date, which attempt to explain the major events observed in the accident such as fission product release and hydrogen explosion.. Physics-driven computer animations will be shown which illustrate an overview of the effects of the earthquake and tsunami as well as the specific effects on Unit 1.


Dr. John E. Kelly was appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Reactor Technologies in the Office of Nuclear Energy in October 2010. He is responsible for the Department of Energy's nuclear reactor research and development programs for Light Water Reactors, Gas Cooled Reactors, Small Modular Reactors, and advanced reactor concepts. His office is also responsible for the space and defense power systems program within DOE-NE.

Prior to joining the Department of Energy, Dr. Kelly spent 30 years at Sandia National Laboratories where he was engaged in a broad spectrum of research programs in nuclear reactor safety, advanced nuclear energy technology, and national security. In the reactor safety field, he led efforts to establish the scientific basis for assessing the risks of nuclear power plant operation and specifically those risks associated with potential accident scenarios. His research focused on core melt progression phenomena and led to an improved understanding of the Three Mile Island accident. In the advanced nuclear energy technology field, he led Sandia's efforts to develop advanced concepts for space nuclear power, Generation IV reactors, and proliferation-resistant and safe fuel cycles. These research activities explored new technologies aimed at improving the safety and affordability of nuclear power. In the national security field, he led national efforts to evaluate the safety and technical viability of tritium production technologies.

Dr. Kelly is an active member of the American Nuclear Society and has served on the Nuclear Installations Safety Division for the last 2 decades in a number of leadership positions. His committee work has focused on increasing the publication of scientific work in the nuclear safety field and in developing national positions on the safety of nuclear power.

Born in Detroit, Michigan, Dr. Kelly received his B.S. in nuclear engineering from the University of Michigan in 1976 and his Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1980. Dr. Kelly is married and has three children.

This Event is For: Campus • Clark School • Graduate • Undergraduate • Faculty • Alumni

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