Nuclear engineering students recognized at annual conference


By Ashley WennersHerron

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Members of the Penn State student chapter of the Institute of Nuclear Materials Management (INMM) won two awards at the institute’s annual conference this past summer in Palm Desert, California.

INMM has six technical divisions, each of which select a recipient for the J.D. Williams Student Paper Award. The award was established in 2003 to honor J.D. Williams, an INMM president who energetically supported students and young professionals.

“There are only six student awards each year, so Penn State had a great showing,” said Azaree Lintereur, assistant professor of nuclear engineering and faculty adviser for the Penn State INMM chapter.

Four members of the Penn State student chapter were recognized for their student research initiative, titled, “Future Technical and Policy Challenges in Nuclear Security and Physical Protection.” The initiative was authored by Marc Wonders, Matt Durbin, Josh Gallagher and Chad Lani, all of whom are graduate students earning their doctorates in nuclear engineering. Wonders presented the student research initiative, which earned its award from the institute’s Education and Training Division.

Durbin was also awarded a J.D. Williams Student Paper Award for his presentation, “Development of Machine Learning Algorithms for Directional Gamma Ray Detection.” Durbin received his award from the institute’s Nuclear Security and Physical Technical Division.

“We continue to be impressed by what our students accomplish,” Lintereur said. “They are laying a strong foundation for their future careers.”


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Megan Lakatos

“We continue to be impressed by what our students accomplish. They are laying a strong foundation for their future careers.”
—Azaree Lintereur, assistant professor of nuclear engineering



The Ken and Mary Alice Lindquist Department of Nuclear Engineering at Penn State is one of the top ranked nuclear engineering programs in the United States. The department distinguishes itself with a strong focus on experimental research. The actively growing department leads four educational programs for students pursuing a bachelor of science, a master of science, a master of engineering, or a doctoral degree. The Radiation Science and Engineering Center (RSEC) facilities, including the Breazeale Reactor, are available to nuclear engineering faculty and students at Penn State for research and instruction. RSEC houses the Breazeale Nuclear Reactor, the country’s first and longest operating licensed nuclear research reactor. Having access to an operating research reactor is a key strength for the department and enables Penn State to harness research and educational opportunities that are unique in the United States. See how we’re inspiring change and impacting tomorrow at

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