Congratulations to Won Seok Jang, a SILC fellow and recent recipient awarded ~$40K from South Korea's National Research Council of Science and Technology for his research, Assessing Applicability and Reliability of a Water Security Technology Platform for Radioactive Exposure Emergency Assistance.
Research commonly focuses on water's need for protection against natural disasters such as droughts, floods, and continuous pollution by domestic and industrial factors. However, Jang notes that rivers and dams are not protected from potential radiation hazards, which are becoming a major threat. Jang's research seeks to change that.
The Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant is a case in point. It suffered major damage in the aftermath of the Tohoku 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami impacting Japan in March 2011. Radiation leaks and permanently damaged reactors rendered the nuclear Power Plant obsolete. Worse still, the eastern part of Japan was exposed to radiation, causing massive economic damage and leaving the towns of Ōkuma and Futaba in Fukushima Prefecture in ruin. The aftermath of the radiation exposure continues still today and is expected to last for more than 100 years.
Northeast Asia is the world's most concentrated nucleic acid industry, with Korea at its center. It has approximately 100 nuclear power plants in operation as of 2018, another 30 under construction, and plans for building an additional 50, increasing the potential risk of radioactive exposure from accidents. North and South America are also within the sphere of influence.
Jang's research seeks to evaluate the suitability of a water security technology platform for radioactive exposure emergencies in various regions around the world, and conduct reliability assessments of the platform through sensitivity and uncertainty analysis. It also will provide validation of the system.