EPISODES 1-50

Ep 01: Michael Shellenberger - President, Environmental Progress
Jan 8, 2018
1) Michael Shellenberger’s personal evolution from a solar to nuclear advocacy
2) Common misconceptions around fukushima including the media’s role
3) We touch on concepts such on technocentrism, human consciousness, even question energy inevitability,
4) And then we review which arguments are more or less influential in readjusting the public's position...
Ep 02: Per Peterson - Chief Nuclear Officer, Kairos Power
Jan 17, 2018
1) The true cost drivers in plant construction and operations
2) Civil nuclear energy from the perspective of non-proliferation
3) Public misunderstandings around nuclear waste
4) Opportunities to borrow learnings from the success of the revitalization of the private space industry...
Ep 03: Todd Allen - Professor, University of Wisconsin
Jan 24, 2018
1) The function of national lab system in prototyping reactors
2) Turning points in the history of commercial nuclear development
3) Todd's contribution towards shaping policy at Thirdway
4) The concept of prize based incentives and how they might apply to nuclear space...
Ep 04: Eric Loewen - Scientist, GE-Hitachi Nuclear Energy
Jan 31, 2018
1) Eric’s personal path through various nuclear institutions, work on climate change with congress, and current efforts
2) GE’s role in America’s nuclear history
3) A deep dive into the PRISM project and technology behind fast reactors
4) The hormetic effect of radiation and the effects of low dose...
Ep 05: Rachel Slaybaugh - Program Director, ARPA-E
Feb 7, 2018
1) Rachel’s introduction to nuclear science and technical expertise
2) The genesis of the world’s first nuclear startup accelerator
3) The need to use computation thoughtfully to replace or supplement experiments
4) Her recent appointment as an Arpa-E program director...
Ep 06: John Wagner - Nuclear Science & Technology, Idaho National Labs
Feb 14, 2018
1) John’s early experience at Oak Ridge National Labs and expertise on understanding how radiation moves through matter
2) The basics of spent fuel management and the status of Yucca Mountain.
3) The five different divisions that fall under the Nuclear Science Directorate
4) The concept of transients and how INL tests them...
Ep 07: Hans Gougar - Advanced Reactors, Idaho National Labs
Feb 21, 2018
1) How Hans became interested in nuclear energy
2) How to lay the foundation for commercializing new technologies
3) The role INL plays as an independent auditor and fuel qualifier
4) The difference between pebblebed and prismatic reactors...
Ep 08: Shannon Bragg-Sitton - Space Nuclear Systems, Idaho National Labs
Feb 28, 2018
1) Her entrance to the Nuclear field at an incredibly young age
2) An overview of space nuclear reactors
3) Nuclear energy as an Industrial heat source and how it fits into broader energy ecosystem
4) Laboratory scale model validation of the worlds future integrated energy systems...
Ep 09: George Griffith - Small Modular Reactors, Idaho National Labs
Mar 7, 2018
1) What it’s like to live in the community around and to work at a Nuclear Power plant
2) His work with the Light Water Reactor sustainability program and how they extend the life of the existing fleet
3) The role that Small Modular Reactors play in the future of the nuclear power industry
4) INL’s role in hosting a demonstration version of this technology and others...
Ep 10: Emma Redfoot - Fellow, Idaho National Labs
Mar 14, 2018
1) How Emma’s personal experiences abroad developed her interest in energy issues and her dual participation in both technical research and social advocacy
2) Developing nuclear fuel model simulator Cyclus and Emma’s efforts to evolve this model to incorporate a hybrid energy ecosystem as well
3) The role hybrid energy systems play in transforming the world
4) What happens when energy is made affordable...
Ep 11: Jessica Lovering - Director of Energy, Breakthrough Institute
Mar 21, 2018
1) Jessica's start in Astrophysics, transition to Energy, and how she joined Breakthrough
2) Deployment timelines and how to make nuclear innovative
3) The importance of fuel reliability, export control, and security considerations
4) Canada's efforts on licensing advanced reactor technologies...
Ep 12: Jeff Harper - Vice President of Strategy, X-Energy
Mar 28, 2018
1) Jeff's earlier career as an NRC vendor inspector
2) The relationship between NRC and Industry including the balance of health and safety against cost and schedule
3) An alternative safety approach to redundancy and defense in depth
4) The X-energy team composition and its founder Kam Ghaffarian ...
Ep 13: John Kotek - Vice President, Policy, Nuclear Energy Institute
Apr 4, 2018
1) John's career at the DOE, the National Labs, as an ANS congressional fellow, and in the private sector
2) NEI's national nuclear energy strategy: Preserve, Sustain, Innovate, and Thrive
3) Pros and Cons of various mechanisms the government can use to support the industry
4) How SMRs alleviate some of the market problems nuclear faces today...
Ep 14: Mark Peters - Laboratory Director, Idaho National Labs
Apr 11, 2018
1) Mark's background in geology and how that ties in to spent fuel disposal
2) New technologies that help bring advanced reactors to fruition
3) How the various contributions of the national labs work as a whole system
4) The importance of multidisciplinary learning and Mark's insight looking towards the future of technology ...
Ep 15: Richard Powell - Executive Director, Clearpath
Apr 18, 2018
1) The origin story of Clearpath and politics role in the climate divide
2) Leveling the playing field" for zero emissions standards
3) Refocusing the Department of Energy's R&D efforts with moonshot initiatives
4) Energy's role in international political relationships...
Ep 16: Don Wolf - Chief Executive Officer, Advanced Reactor Concepts
Apr 25, 2018
1) The ARC origin story through resurrection of a decades old nuclear prototype EBR-2
2) A technical discussion on "closing the fuel cycle", "breeding", "electrochemical refining"
3) A discussion of sodium and "pool type" vs "loop type" design
4) Nuclear economics and how to balance economies of scale vs diseconomies of scale...
Ep 17: Rita Baranwal - Director, GAIN Program
May 2, 2018
1) Rita's start in Materials Engineering at MIT, her transition into the space research world and her work at Westinghouse in their fuel fabrication facility
2) Scouting "Game Changing" technologies across robotics, advanced reactors, advanced chemical engineering, advanced manufacturing, digital instrumentation and control
3) GAIN initiatives: Vouchers, Workshops, Facilitating industry work with the labs
4) Fuel testing for advanced reactors and...
Ep 18: Josh Freed - Vice-President, Clean Energy, Third Way
May 9, 2018
1) Josh's journey from American political history to Nuclear advocacy
2) Third Way's focus areas, clean energy policies, and how they found advanced nuclear
3) Questioning the role of public perceptions' influence on the industry
4) Across the aisle legislative efforts enabling the next generation of nuclear...
Ep 19: Amy Roma - Lawyer, Hogan Lovells
May 16, 2018
1) Amy's work at the NRC's atomic safety licensing board on waste and interim storage.
2) How the "Gold Standard Provision" affects enrichment and reprocessing access.
3) The implicit understanding behind "atoms for peace" initiative and the inverse correlation between energy production and weapons production.
4) Collaboration between nuclear developers (new and old) and climate-driven acceptance....
Ep 20: Jim Conca - Writer, Forbes
May 23, 2018
1) Jim's start as an extraterrestrial scientist and coordinator of shuttle activities.
2) A comparison between the future of China and the US' nuclear industries.
3) Dilution as a waste mitigation strategy, discussion of Fukishima and Tritium.
4) Waste disposal methods, political contentions, and the power of the Constitution. ...
Ep 21: Bill Stokes - President, Columbia Basin (Advanced Reactor Consulting)
May 30, 2018
1) Bill's introduction to the nuclear industry through a co-op program at Drexel University.
2) The importance of the design of a power plant and the logistics of its constructibility.
3) A discussion of the United States' departure from the nuclear industry.
4) The Fast-flux Test Facility shutdown and exploring how to use radio isotopes for medical applications, such as cancer therapy.
...
Ep 22: Edward McGinnis - Assistant Secretary of Energy, Department Of Energy
Jun 6, 2018
1) Ed's start at the US Department of Energy doing nuclear non-proliferation security work.
2) How the US can compete against Russia and China's state-financed nuclear industries.
3) The Department of Energy's role in the private nuclear market.
4) Why the small modular reactor will pave the way towards a new nuclear generation....
Ep 23: Steve Unwin - Nuclear Sector Manager, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Jun 11, 2018
1) Steve's start working on Probabilistic Risk Assessment with the UK Energy Authority.
2) The industry's transition to utilizing a risk-informed approach in design.
3) The viability, benefits, and challenges of extracting uranium from seawater.
4) A discussion of reprocessing through a risk assessment perspective....
Ep 24: Tara O'Niel - Environmental Assessment, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Jun 12, 2018
1) Tara's start as an archaeologist at Hanford Cultural Resources Laboratory.
2) An explanation of the National Environmental Policy Act.
3) The Nuclear Renaissance and whether there is a second Renaissance emerging.
4) Improvements that need to be done in the system. ...
Ep 25: Brady Hanson - Used Fuel Expert, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Jun 13, 2018
1) Brady's start as a chemical engineer.
2) Dry Storage: in theory and in practice.
3) A discussion about Yucca Mountain's effectiveness in disposing used fuel.
4) A look at whether nuclear technology is safe and a comparison to other forms of energy....
Ep 26: Ron Omberg - Fast Reactor Expert, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Jun 14, 2018
1) Ron's start with General Electric working on the D-Replacement Reactor.
2) The significance of plutonium-recycle test reactors and challenges of the program.
3) Why it is important to establish mutual and meaningful international partnerships.
4) The best way to embark designing new nuclear technology. ...
Ep 27: Peter Lyons - Fmr. Commissioner, Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Jun 20, 2018
1) Pete's start in the weapons testing & Star Wars Program at Los Alamos National Lab.
2) Pete's work with Senator Domenici to craft legislation for essential nuclear programs.
3) Catalyzing a wave of innovation efforts through investment in research and development.
4) Highlights about and the ingenuity of NuScale's small modular reactor design. ...
Ep 28: Jose Reyes - Chief Technical Officer, NuScale Power
Jun 25, 2018
1) Jose's captivation with the nuclear industry during high school and college.
2) The history, description, and findings of Counter Current Flow Limitation Testing.
3) Passive safety systems, the Bleed and Feed Approach, and the AP 600.
4) Future implications of NuScale's groundbreaking design on an international scale. ...
Ep 29: Tom Bergman - Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, NuScale Power
Jun 26, 2018
1) Tom's unexpected interest in nuclear through the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Directorate.
2) An explanation of and the reasoning behind risk-informed categorization Rule 50.69.
3) Tom's transition from the NRC to NuScale and the private sector.
4) Short-term challenges and long-term aspirations of the company. ...
Ep 30: Tom Mundy - Chief Commercial Officer, NuScale Power
Jun 27, 2018
1) Tom's start as a Shift Technical Advisor implementing transient response implementing procedures.
2)The importance of educating and familiarizing others with nuclear terms.
3) Factors that determine whether technology is commercially attractive.
4) Domestic v. International Competition and an in-depth look at the international market....
Ep 31: Lenka Kollar - Director of Business Strategy, NuScale Power
Jun 28, 2018
1) Growing up as an environmentalist and making the transition to the nuclear industry.
2) The community-based approach and applications of SMRs.
3) How important it is to train and provide opportunities for the next generation.
4) How to best learn about nuclear if you're not already familiar with it. ...
Ep 32: John Hopkins - Chief Executive Officer, NuScale Power
Jun 29, 2018
1) John's start working with Fluor Corporation and his transition to NuScale.
2) The importance of having a sustainable supply chain.
3) How economics trump politics with the SMR design.
4) Applications of SMRs and what the world will look like in the future. ...
Ep 33: Chad Painter - Technical Advisor - National Nuclear Security Administration
July 2, 2018
1) Chad's time as a Navy Nuke.
2) The effect of Three Mile Island on the perception of nuclear and its consequences.
3) An overview of the IAEA and the evolution of light water reactors.
4) How nuclear technology can reduce energy poverty. ...
Ep 34: Ken Canavan - Chief Technical Officer, Westinghouse
July 4, 2018
1) Ken's start doing safety analysis, including his work at Three Mile Island.
2) An overview of the risk-informed regulation movement in the 90's.
3) Nuclear maintenance, plant engineering, and risk assessment.
4) The roadmap to commercialization and the importance of identifying the market. ...
Ep 35: Spencer Weart - Author, The Rise of Nuclear Fear
Jul7 6, 2018
1) Spencer's start studying the history of science at the American Institute of Physics.
2) The interaction between carbon dioxide and oceans; the significance of climate change.
3) A discussion of the race between technology and the evolution of human morality.
4) How nuclear imagery can affect our perception of nuclear energy....
Ep 36: John Stevens - Reactor Materials, Argonne National Lab
July 9, 2018
1) John's introduction to nuclear during his work with the Geological Survey.
2) The interdisciplinary nature of the nuclear industry.
3) Improving efficiency without compromising safety.
4) Why studying the effect of radiation on materials is important....
Ep 37: Chris Grandy - Nuclear Experimental Facilities, Argonne National Lab
Jul 10, 2018
1) Chris' start in the Nuclear Propulsion Office Candidate Program.
2) Technology development and sodium-cooled power plants.
3) The history of metal and the importance of building to increasing scale for commercialization.
4) The importance of maintaining the US' technology edge and knowledge base ...
Ep 38: Hussein Khalil - Nuclear Energy R&D, Argonne National Lab
Jul 11, 2018
1) Hussein's fascination with reactor physics and kinetics.
2) How reducing computational uncertainty allows you to design closer to material capability.
3) The Generation 4 Initiative and the future of nuclear reactors.
4) The importance of having a diverse system of commercially-pursued technology. ...
Ep 39: Tom Fanning - Advanced Reactor Modeling, Argonne National Lab
July 12, 2018
1) Tom's introduction to the nuclear industry from a history project.
2) How Chernobyl reinforced the importance of nuclear and safety.
3) Scram Systems and their importance during a shutdown failure.
4) Why it's important to be involved and engaged in the international community. ...
Ep 40: Amanda Youker - Isotope Production, Argonne National Lab
Jul 13, 2018
1) Amanda's interest in chemistry and her work at a crime lab.
2) A conversation about molybdenum 99
3) The Argonne Molybdenum Research Experiment.
4) What's in store for the future. ...
Ep 41: Ken Luongo - President, Partnership for Global Security
July 16, 2018
1) Ken's start with the Nuclear Arms Control Program at the Association for the Advancement of Science.
2) How the nuclear nonproliferation community and nuclear energy committee united.
3) The prejudice against nuclear and the issue of nuclear geopolitics.
4) Cyber-nuclear and artificial intelligence. ...
Ep 42: Laura Holgate - Former Ambassador, International Atomic Energy Agency
Jul 18, 2018
1) The history behind and challenges of implementing the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction.
2) The evolution of nuclear threats and the modern approach to securing nuclear materials.
3) How the Global Threat Initiative became a launchpad for addressing proliferation challenges.
4) Why bringing nuclear energy to a country can reduce the nuclear weapons risk....
Ep 43: Paul Murphy - Managing Director / Lawyer, Gowling WLG
Jul 20, 2018
1) Paul's introduction to the nuclear industry as a project finance attorney for Bechtel.
2) The benefits of regulation and deregulation of the market.
3) The disadvantages of using renewables both in construction and application.
4) Why the US government and nuclear corporations need to come together and provide one voice. ...
Ep 44: Yves Desbazeille - Director General, Foratom
Jul 24, 2018
1) Yves' start as a nuclear engineer at the Power Utility of France (EDF).
2) How the perception of nuclear energy in France has changed over time.
3)The similarities and differences of the anti-nuclear movements in the US and Europe.
4) What next generation technology looks like and what the future holds for the nuclear industry. ...
Ep 45: Steven Goldfarb - Atlas Experiment (Large Hadron Collider), CERN
Jul 25, 2018
1) An explanation of CERN's mission and the Large Electron Positron Collider.
2) The misconceptions of particle collisions and an explanation of their interactions.
3) The Theory of Super-Symmetry and the Grand Unification Theory.
4) How measuring the Higgs Boson can help give us a new window into physics. ...
Ep 46: Giovanni Porcellana - Technology Transfer, CERN
Jul 26, 2018
1) Giovanni's fascination with clean energy and his experiment on neutronics.
2) The role of particle accelerators in cancer treatments.
3) The MEDICIS Project and its potential contributions to the field of medicine.
4) Dating art and understanding cultural heritage through the use of particle accelerators. ...
Ep 47: Michael Doser - Aegis Experiment (Antimatter), CERN
Jul 27, 2018
1) Michael's interest in particle physics and his work as a high energy physicist.
2) Annihilation and why the occurrence of antimatter collisions are more common than you think.
3) Why understanding high energy physics is crucial to diagnosing and treating cancer and tumors.
4) Neutrinos and the DUNE Experiment. ...
Ep 48: Toni Hemminki - Chief Executive Officer, Fennovoima
Aug 1, 2018
1) Toni's interest in environmental protection, energy, and climate change.
2) Innovative projects surrounding heat consumption and the issue's importance in Finland.
3) Energy procurement and investing in the nuclear industry.
4) What we learned about light water reactor meltdowns and how we can apply these lessons to future designs....
Ep 49: Atte Harjanne - Green Politician, Helsinki
Aug 1, 2018
1) Atte's interest in history and his involvement in politics during University.
2) How approaches to solving problems and talking about politics have changed over time.
3) The advantage of being able to communicate science to politicians and vise-versa.
4) The benefits and disadvantages of regulating the removal of fossil infrastructure completely. ...
Ep 50: Ville Tulkki - Senior Researcher, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Aug 2, 2018
1) Ville's previous misperceptions about nuclear energy and how he overcame them.
2) Generation 4 and how the new reactors can be more economic, more versatile, and safer.
3) Why the amount of electricity SMRs can bring to the grid are more flexible than the current fleet.
4) Why it is necessary for the nuclear industry to advocate for the use of nuclear energy. ...
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