Nuclear reactor - von Hippel calls it a boondoggle

Frank von Hippel, Adrian Cho

Frank von Hippel, physicist, life long leader against breeder nuclear energy: Plans for a controversial multibillion-dollar U.S. nuclear research reactor are coming together at lightning speed—much too fast, say some nuclear policy experts. With a push from Congress, the Department of Energy (DOE) has begun designing the Versatile Fast Neutron Source, which would be the first DOE-built reactor since the 1970s. It would generate high-energy neutrons for testing materials and fuels for so-called fast reactors. Frank von Hippel, a nuclear physicist at Princeton University, says, "It's a pork-barrel project." Von Hippel says, DOE should ask the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to study the need for the reactor.


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