Professor Richard Wilson, a nuclear power safety expert from Harvard University, will present the UNM Physics and Astronomy Friday colloquium April 1. Titled, “A physicist’s approach to reactor safety: lessons from TMI (Three Mile Island), Chernobyl and Japan,” Wilson will discuss how the physicist’s approach to analysis has led to safety features that are being tested in Japan. The colloquium will begin at 4 p.m. in room 125 of Dane Smith Hall. A pre-event reception starts at 3:30 p.m.
Wilson has been studying nuclear-power safety since 1972. At Three-Mile Island (TMI), he appeared on many TV programs to inform the public. He was chairman of the Governor’s committee on how to respond to the TMI accident.
Wilson was also chairman of an ANS committee on reactor safety in 1984. He was active in informing the public after Chernobyl and visited the reactor, going inside the sarcophagus. For these he was awarded a medal by the USSR as a clean-up worker and an award by the APS in 1990.
His information about the Japan accident is being summarized and updated regularly at, http://physics.harvard.edu/~wilson/Japanese_reactors.html.