University of Alaska Southeast


Company: Idaho National Laboratory
Location: Idaho Falls, ID
Position: Summer Intern
Requirements: See position link

Three 2019 summer internships are available for Alaska undergraduate and graduate students at the Idaho National Laboratory. INL is working with the Alaska Center for Energy and Power to convene two stakeholder workshops — March 20 in Anchorage and June 17-18 in Idaho Falls — to explore the potential for nuclear microreactor deployment in Arctic environments.

The interns will be involved in the workshops, engaging with Alaska community and business personnel, laboratory and university researchers, and nuclear industry representatives. Students will spend May through August working with INL researchers, focusing on three themes.

  • Strategic communications: Consider and analyze issues related to public and private sector engagement, strategic messaging, and related communications challenges. Develop approaches to differentiate microreactor technology from presently deployed, gigawatt-scale reactor technologies; develop approaches to communicate benefit, risk and special issues related to Arctic applications; and develop strategic messaging approaches related to the importance of nuclear energy in a clean energy/carbon-constrained global energy portfolio.
  • Regulatory and technology policy: Consider the present state of nuclear regulations and consider what regulatory gaps and hurdles exist related to stationary microreactors and portable (mobile) microreactor systems. Consider what national policy changes might be necessary to enable deployment in Arctic environments, either on private, state or federal (military) sites. Consider what regulatory changes would be needed to accommodate highly automated nuclear systems, possibly incorporating autonomous or remote-controlled operation.
  • Economic and market assessment: Assess the economics of nuclear microreactor deployment in the Arctic based on estimates of capital, financing and operations costs. Compare and contrast with other energy options. Consider what application potential exists for microreactors (e.g., mining operations, port facilities, remote community and/or research stations) and what portions of the resulting supply chain and enabled economic opportunities might provide competitive advantage for Alaska-based business. Consider novel potential business models for systems deployment, including vendor-lease options.

Internship applications available at Clean Energy Technology, Integration and Environmental Sustainability Internships. Contact George Roe (UAF ACEP) or Thomas Steele (INL) for more information.

Contact: George Roe (UAF ACEP) or Thomas Steele (INL)
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