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U.S. Dept. of Energy to invest $13 million in nuclear energy

The United States Department of Energy is injecting nearly 13 million dollars into nuclear energy technology.  Some North Carolina universities and corporations – including GE-Hitachi in Wilmington -- will see a portion of that money.

In a press release from the DOE, Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced that $788,000 will go to North Carolina State University.  The Electric Power Research Institute in Charlotte will get $800,000 for work on a project that includes GE-Hitachi in Castle Hayne.  And a separate $800,000 award will help fund research – with GE’s Global Nuclear Fuel -- to increase efficiency on both light water reactors and advanced reactors. 

Chu says the funds underscore the Obama Administration’s commitments to restarting the nation’s nuclear industry and educating future nuclear scientists and engineers. 

The money will also be invested in solving what Chu calls “common challenges” facing the nuclear industry – such as reactor safety, performance, and cost competitiveness. 

Rachel hosts and produces CoastLine, an award-winning hourlong conversation featuring artists, humanitarians, scholars, and innovators in North Carolina. The show airs Wednesdays at noon and Sundays at 2 pm on 91.3 FM WHQR Public Media. It's also available as a podcast; just search CoastLine WHQR. You can reach her at rachellh@whqr.org.