2005 Technical Achievement Award
2008 Technical Achievement Award
The recipient of the 2008 Technical Achievement Award was the
late Dr. Larry E. Hochreiter. The award citation reads "In
recognition of his significant contributions toward advancing the
knowledge of thermal hydraulics phenomena and for his impact
on the thermal hydraulics community as a researcher and educator
promoting technical excellence and nurturing next generation
Hochreiter's long career in nuclear engineering safety included serving as
Westinghouse's safety analysis technical expert on the 1979 Three Mile
Island accident and directing a Westinghouse analysis of the accident for
the President's Commission on TMI. He directed Westinghouse's analysis team
on the Zion/Indian Point 60-day study for severe accidents and initiated
Westinghouse's efforts in severe accidents. In 1986, as a consulting engineer
for Westinghouse, he directed engineers in developing a model for the
Chernobyl RBMK reactor and performed independent calculations to verify
the actual Chernobyl accident sequence.
He was instrumental in directing Westinghouse's Full Length Emergency
Core Heat Transfer-Systems Effects And Separate Effects tests program.
The research and data resulting from that program continues to be regularly
cited in emerging research and the qualifcation of thermal-hydraulic computer
codes. He has worked on safety issues for Westinghouse's Pressurized Water
Reactors and Boiling Water Reactors and consulted with the Westinghouse Savannah
River Company and the Westinghouse Naval Division. His collaboration partners
included the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Electric Power Research
Institute, Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory and many companies in the industry.
He was a current member of a governor's panel overseeing an inspection of
the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Plant, Vernon, Vt.
Hochreiter joined Westinghouse in 1971 as senior engineer at the Westinghouse
Electric Corporation and became manager of Safeguards Development in 1972.
He was appointed advisory engineer in 1977 and consulting engineer in 1985,
both of which were management positions that focused on technical issues.
In 1986, as an adjunct professor, Hochreiter began teaching graduate courses
in the Penn State/Westinghouse mechanical engineering program at the
Monroeville Center, through the University's first extended degree program
in nuclear engineering, and at the University Park campus. In 1994, he
initiated a second master's degree program at the center. He joined Penn
State's nuclear engineering department in 1997 as professor of nuclear
and mechanical engineering, teaching undergraduate and graduate students.
His research at the university focused on thermal-hydraulic modeling of
nuclear power plants, reactor safety analysis and experimental studies of
two-phase flow and heat transfer. He created a state-of-the-art reflood
heat transfer facility where Penn State graduate students could carry out
a variety of experiments in heat transfer, convective steam cooling and
steam cooling with droplet injection.