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Steven Zinkle

Joint UTK Professor


Physical metallurgy of structural materials; the effects of ion and neutron irradiation on the microstructure, physical properties, and mechanical properties of metals and ceramics; transmission electron microscopy; and fusion and space fission reactor materials studies.


PhD, Nuclear Engineering (minor in Physics), University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, 1985

MS, Materials Science, 1985

MS, Nuclear Engineering, 1982

BS, Nuclear Engineering, 1980

Professional Service

ASM International [nominating committee 2007; awards policy comm. member 2009–2012, vice chair

2012–2014, chair 2014–2015; gold medal (2009–2013) and Campbell Memorial Lecture (2009–2011) selection comm.; ASM/TMS nuclear materials comm, 1987–present (chair 2003–2005)

TMS (Structural Materials Division Council 2003–2005, Energy Materials Blue Ribbon panel 2010)

American Nuclear Society (honors & awards comm. member 2009–present; vice chair, 2011–2013; chair, 2013–2015; Materials Science & Technology Division executive comm. member 2003–2009)

American Ceramic Society, Materials Research Society, American Physical Society (APS)

Journal Editor/Editorial Advisory Boards

Editor, Metallurgical & Materials Transactions E: Materials for Energy Systems (July 2013–present)

Journal of ASTM International (associate editor, 2003–2006); Materials Science Foundations (1998-present); Fusion Science & Technology (2001-present); Current Opinion in Solid State and Materials Science (2011–2014), Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology (2012–present), Nuclear Fusion (2013–present)

Other Advisory Panels and Professional Service

Member, DOE Fusion Energy Sciences Advisory Committee (FESAC), 2009–present

Chair, DOE FESAC advisory panel on Materials Science & Technology (July 2011–February 2012); vice chair, DOE FESAC advisory panel on Strategic Planning (April–September 2014)

Member, DOE FESAC advisory panel on Fusion Energy Development Path (Oct. 2002-June 2003), advisory panel on 10-year R&D priorities (Oct. 2003–Nov. 2004), advisory panel on strategic planning (March–Oct. 2007); advisory panel on Magnetic Fusion Energy priorities (July 2012–Jan. 2013)

US representative, International Energy Agency Executive Committee for the Implementing Agreement on a Programme of Research and Development on Fusion Reactor Materials, 2003–2011 (chair, 2003–2006)

Co-chair, Materials under Extreme Conditions panel for the DOE-Basic Energy Sciences workshop on Basic Research Needs for Advanced Nuclear Energy Systems, August 2006; crosscutting science panel member for BES workshop on Basic Research Needs for Materials Under Extreme Environments, June 2007

Member, US DOE Fusion Materials Sciences Steering Committee, 1999–2011 (chair, 2000–2006)

Task leader (reactor materials) for DOE/NASA Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter space reactor project (2003–2004)

Member, Advanced Fuels Cladding Initiative/Gen IV Materials Working Group, 2004–2006

Member, Commissariat A L’Energie Atomique (CEA) Visiting Committee on R&D for Future Nuclear Reactors, May 2005

Scientific advisory committee member, CEA Nuclear Energy Directorate, 2008–present

Member, Grand Accelerateur National d’Ions Lourds (GANIL) Scientific Council Interdisciplinary Research Evaluation committee, Universite de Caen, France (February 2006)

Member, Peking University (Beijing, China) Institute of Nucl. Science & Technol. Adv. Comm., 2011–present

External advisory board, Los Alamos National Lab MaRIE project, 2008–present

Member, Materials Capability Review committee for Los Alamos National Laboratory, May 2014

Academic advisory committee member, NC State Department of Materials Science & Engineering, 2006–present

Advisory board member, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Nuclear Engineering program, 2008–2010

Advisory board, University of Michigan Dept. of Nuclear Engineering & Radiological Sciences, 2009–present

Advisory board, University of Wisconsin Dept. of Engineering Physics, 2009–present

Advisory board, Purdue University School of Nuclear Engineering, 2012–present

Reviewer for numerous DOE and NSF research programs and over 25 archival journals

Mentoring of Students and Postdoctoral Researchers

Total Postgraduate Scholars Advised: 4 as primary advisor; 7 as co-advisor

Primary mentor at ORNL: S. Kojima (Japan); D.P. White, Merrimack College; M.M. Li, Argonne National Laboratory; Y. Matsukawa, Tohoku University, Japan

Co-advisor at ORNL: W.R. Allen; P.M. Rice, IBM; A. Meldrum, University Alberta, Canada; N. Hashimoto, Hokkaido University, Japan; D.T. Hoelzer, University Florida/ORNL; A.G. Perez-Bergquist (Oak Ridge National Lab); N.A.P. Kiran Kumar (Oak Ridge National Lab)

Scientific/technical advisor for graduate students/ on thesis evaluation committee: L.L. Snead, RPI (PhD); T.J. Miller, Auburn University (MS); M.C. Osborne, RPI (PhD); L. Malerba, Polytechnic University, Madrid, Spain (PhD); A.T. Nelson, University Wisconsin (MS); D.A. McClintock, University Texas-Austin (PhD); Pui Wai (Leo) Ma, Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PhD)

Current graduate students at UT: Daniel Clark (Nuclear Engineering); James Brechtl (CIRE); coadvisor with Brian Wirth for UT CIRE student Congyi Li (CIRE)

Awards and Recognitions

American Ceramic Society Edward Orton, Jr. Memorial Lecture Award (Materials Science & Technology 2017)

Member of the National Academy of Engineering (Materials Engineering section, 2012)

US Dept. of Energy (DOE) Ernest Orlando Lawrence Memorial Award (Nuclear Technology, 2006)

Fellow, American Physical Society (2013), Materials Research Society (2013), The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society (TMS, 2011), American Association for the Advancement of Science (2009), American Nuclear Society (ANS, 2007), ASM International (2003), American Ceramic Society (2001)

ORNL Corporate Fellow (2004)—limited to about 30 staff among 4,800 ORNL employees

ANS Mishima Award for outstanding R&D on nuclear fuels and materials (2007)

Robert W. Cahn Award (inaugural recipient, Elsevier Nuclear Materials Conference, 2010)

University Wisconsin College of Engineering Distinguished Achievement Award (2010)

IEEE Nuclear & Plasma Sciences Society Fusion Technology Award (2006)

ANS Mater. Sci. & Technology Division Outstanding Achievement Award (2005)

ANS Mater. Sci. & Technology Division Literary Award (coauthor, 1996, 2006)

American Ceramic Society Nucl. & Environ. Technology Division Best Paper Award (1994–1995, 2007)

National Academy of Engineering Frontiers of Engineering symposium invited participant (1998)

Fusion Power Associates David J. Rose Excellence in Fusion Engineering Award (1992)

ORNL Eugene P. Wigner Fellow (1985–1987)

ORNL Awards Night Technical Achievement (R&D Accomplishment) Award (1991, 1997, 1999, 2002)

Phi Eta Sigma, Tau Beta Pi, Phi Kappa Phi, Sigma Xi

University Wisconsin Sigma Xi Excellence in Graduate Research Award (1985)


S. J. Zinkle, “Fundamentals of ion-solid interactions in ceramic and structural materials” (invited), RF Mehl Medal Symposium on Frontiers in Nanostructured Materials and Their Applications, TMS Annual meeting, San Diego, CA, Feb. 16–20, 2014.

S. J. Zinkle, L.L. Snead, K.A. Terrani, “Accident Tolerant Fuels for Light Water Reactors” (invited), Symposium on Materials and Fuels for the Current and Advanced Nuclear Reactors III, TMS Annual meeting, San Diego, CA, Feb. 16–20, 2014.

S. J. Zinkle, “N.A.P. Kiran Kumar, A.G. Perez-Bergquist, H. Bei, K.J. Leonard, Yanwen Zhang, and S.J. Zinkle” (invited), MRS Spring meeting symposium EEE on Materials Behavior under Extreme Irradiation, Stress or Temperature, San Francisco, CA, April 21–24, 2014.

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