Dr. Travis Knight

2011 Fred C. Davison Distinguished Scientist Award

The Citizens for Nuclear Technology Awareness is pleased to announce that the winner of the 2011 Fred C. Davison Distinguished Scientist Award is Dr. Travis Knight. Knight is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of South Carolina (USC), and a leader in the development of the University's graduate program in Nuclear Engineering.

"He has done things to get nuclear technology back in the program at USC, which is extremely important. There are very few remaining universities that have a curriculum for nuclear technology, and for him to get it started like that and get it accredited is really showing initiative and creativity and is a great accomplishment," said Major Thompson, Chair of CNTA's Davison Award selection committee.

Knight's work includes modeling and simulating advanced reactors and fuel cycles, and he has collaborated with national laboratories, including the Savannah River National Laboratory, as well as the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Department of Defense.

He holds a B.S. in nuclear engineering and an M.S. and Ph.D. in nuclear engineering science - all from the University of Florida - and has 15 years of experience in advanced nuclear fuel development. He built a laboratory to study advanced fuels at USC and works with carbide fuels for gas-cooled reactors and high temperature reactors, "which are critical to realization of a hydrogen fuel economy without generation of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas."

"I see the program at USC continuing to grow along with the laboratory and aspirations for advanced developments in energy and the nuclear fuel cycle to benefit our nation's energy independence and sustainability," Knight said.

He is a member of the American Nuclear Society (ANS) and received the 2001 Significant Contribution Award by the Materials Science and Technology Division of the association for his work in mixed carbide fuels. He has Chaired ANS's Division of Materials Science and Technology and its Workforce Development Division.

Dr. Knight was honored at the CNTA's annual Edward Teller Lecture/Banquet on October 3.

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