MICHAEL F SIMPSON portrait
  • Chair of Metallurgical Engineering, Metallurgical Engineering
  • Associated Faculty for Nuclear Engineering
  • Adjunct Professor, Materials Science and Engineering
  • Adjunct Professor, Civil And Environmental Engin
  • Professor, Metallurgical Engineering

Education

  • B.S., Chemical Engineering, California Institute of Technology
  • Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Princeton University. Project: The Zeolite-Catalyzed Alkylation of Isobutane with Butene

Research Summary

My research is focused on pyroprocessing of nuclear fuel with projects in safeguards, actinide separations, and waste management. Early in my career, I contributed to the development of the Integral Fast Reactor system at Argonne National Laboratory. The ideas of breeder reactors and advanced nuclear waste forms are very appealing to me. I am also interested in advanced nuclear reactors that use molten salts as either fuel or coolant.

Biography

For 17 years I worked for U.S. national laboratories on the leading front of nuclear energy research.  This experience connected me with the real needs of our nation in the areas of nuclear energy and nuclear waste management.  I helped develop technologies that truly can be rolled out and implemented to contribute to our nation's long term energy security.  I also gained tremendous perspective into the associated national security issues and have put development of safeguards and non-proliferation technology at the top of my list of research goals.  I am delighted to have recently joined academia and be able to directly engage with students, post-docs, and other faculty.  I plan to bring much of my previous nuclear energy research with me from the Idaho National Laboratory in addition to developing new ideas and new focus areas.  This will hopefully include high impact research outside of the nuclear area, including catalysis, green chemistry, and highly efficient metal processing technology.