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ORNL taps PNNL’s Johnson to lead Isotope and Fuel Cycle Technology Division

Bradley Johnson is the new division director of the Isotope and Fuel Cycle Technology Division at the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Johnson previously served as chief scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and has experience in materials science research, technical and program management and nuclear operations.

As part of ORNL’s Nuclear Science and Engineering Directorate, IFCTD is primarily focused on isotope research, development, and production; nuclear fuel cycle technology development; nuclear materials processing and characterization; and nuclear securities research, development and deployment.

“We are thrilled to welcome Brad to ORNL and NSED. His extensive background and enthusiasm for leading a research organization will help IFCTD continue its scientific excellence,” said Alan Icenhour, associate laboratory director for NSED. “IFCTD serves a key role in supplying the nation with strategic isotopes, advancing the nuclear energy fuel cycle and developing radiation detection capabilities. Brad’s vision will be instrumental in the division continuing those important missions.”

Prior to his role as PNNL’s chief scientist, Johnson served as the technical group manager for the Radiological Materials and Technology Development Group for eight years. He joined PNNL in 2001 as a research scientist.

“I am honored to join ORNL and lead a team of nuclear scientists and engineers who are performing world-class science and technology development,” Johnson said. “From building the world’s first operational nuclear reactor in 1943 to recently playing a key role in the discovery of tennessine, ORNL has more than 75 years of renowned leadership in nuclear science and engineering. I am excited to be a part of building on that legacy.”

During a career that has spanned more than 30 years, Johnson has earned two R&D 100 awards and two patents and produced more than 50 publications. He has also been recognized by PNNL with a DOE Outstanding Mentoring Award for the guidance and assistance he provided to students.

Johnson’s research interests include materials characterization to understand and solve materials development and integration issues. He also has expertise in materials synthesis, analytical electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction analysis.

After completing his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, Johnson served as a surface warfare officer in the U.S. Navy for seven years as part of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program. He then completed his master’s and doctoral degrees in materials science and engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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