NSSPI associate director for international programs, Dr. Paul Nelson, and Adam Hetzler, a graduate student in the Nuclear Engineering department at TAMU, traveled to India the week of August 20-September 4, 2010. The purpose of their visit was to finalize arrangements for Hetzler to present lectures on nuclear security engineering at Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University (PDPU) and Magalore University (MU) and to explore the possibility of developing education programs in the field at other Indian universities. As part of these preparations, a letter of cooperation was signed between TAMU and PDPU. NSSPI’s collaboration with PDPU is intended to produce joint student research projects in nuclear security engineering in addition to the development of the education program at PDPU. NSSPI also has an agreement in place with Mangalore University and two MU students are currently enrolled in its Nonproliferation M.S. program.
While at PDPU, Nelson presented two lectures to groups comprised predominantly of students. The first was a presentation on TAMU and its Nuclear Engineering Program. The second, titled “The Future of Civil Nuclear Energy: an empirical assessment,” built upon models Nelson has been developing in conjunction with Dr. Christopher Sprecher in the political science department and argued that it is in India’s self-interest to develop a cadre of nuclear professionals who are well-versed in the science and engineering of nuclear security. A similar lecture was presented at Sri Jayachamarajendra College of Engineering in Mysore. Nelson and Hetzler also visited Calicut University.