Becca Segel, a third-year undergraduate studying chemical engineering, recently presented at the Nuclear and Emerging Technologies in Space Conference at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Her presentation, titled “Investigation of Production Parameter Effects on Spark Plasma Sintered Molybdenum Cermet Wafers for Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Applications,” was based on research she conducted at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center as a summer intern.
The presentation focused on ceramic-metal wafers for nuclear
thermal propulsion, specifically how best to produce these important disks.
This technology is being developed by NASA for possible applications in
missions between Earth and Mars.
Segel’s research—which was conducted as part of a
group—previously placed in two competitions through the NASA center: third at
the Intern Poster Expo and first in the Parker Solar Probe Video Challenge.
Segel also is an undergraduate researcher in the
Electrochemical Engineering and Energy Laboratory and a Great Lakes Energy
Institute Think Energy Fellow.