INL News Release
Oct. 13, 2011

Kortny Rolston, 208-526-0962,
Misty Benjamin, 208-351-9900,

INL researcher nominated for international award

IDAHO FALLS — The director of the Center for Space Nuclear Research has been named a finalist for a World Technology Network international award.

Dr. Steven Howe is one of five people being considered for a World Technology Award in the organization's space category. The winners of the 2011 World Technology Awards will be announced during a ceremony at the United Nations in New York City on Oct. 26, at the close of the two-day technology summit. The event is sponsored in association with TIME magazine, Fortune, CNN, Science/AAAS, Technology Review and others. Dr. Howe will be available for media interviews on Tuesday, Oct. 13, from 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

"It’s an honor to be nominated for this award and to be recognized for the work we are doing at the Center for Space Nuclear Research," Howe said. "We are working on some very advanced concepts that will aid the nation in its space exploration and research missions and the World Technology Network is recognizing that."

Battelle Energy Alliance created the Center for Space Nuclear Research in 2005 when it won the contract to operate INL for the U.S. Department of Energy. The center is operated by the Universities Space Research Association for Battelle. The center's mission is to develop new programs and perform research on advanced space nuclear concepts.

For example, the center currently is developing a Mars "hopper" as a potential technology to replace the rovers that have traditionally been used to explore that planet.

"Nuclear systems have a lot of potential in the field of space exploration and research," Howe said. "They deliver a lot of energy in a small package, which is ideal because the bigger a system is the more it costs to send into space."

The awards are sponsored by the World Technology Network, a curated membership community comprised of the world's most innovative individuals and organizations in science, technology and related fields. It started presenting the World Technology Awards in 2000 as a way to honor those doing "the innovative work of the greatest likely long-term significance."  Awards are given in 20 different categories of science and technology.

Nominees for the 2011 World Technology Awards were selected through an intense process by the winners and finalists from previous years.

For more information about the World Technology Network, or to attend the WTN Summit and Awards, contact Beth-Ellen Keyes, director of Events and Operations for the World Technology Network at or (646) 246-1081 or visit the organization’s website at

INL is one of the DOE's 10 multiprogram national laboratories. The laboratory performs work in each of DOE's strategic goal areas: energy, national security, science and environment. INL is the nation's leading center for nuclear energy research and development.

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