Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Donald Cotton invented propellants for nuclear reactors.

Donald Cotton, the technical lead for nuclear chemistry research and development at the Department of Energy, plans, manages and evaluates research and development on reactor materials and chemistry carried out in DOE national laboratories.  He identifies the breeder reactor needs of less-developed nations, an assignment which has taken him to several European states.
Dr. Cotton first worked as a physical chemist at the Naval Propellant Plant at Indian Head, Maryland.  From there he moved to the Marine Engineering Laboratory in Annapolis where he worked on the combustion of hydrocarbon fuels and invented a microwave absorption technique for measuring solid propellant burning rates.  Later he researched liquid state chemistry and liquid gas propellants.
His career extended beyond the laboratory.  For 2 years Cotton was science editor for Libratterian Books, presenting scientific and technical subjects to lay readers.
Cotton's degrees in physical chemistry include an M.S. from Yale University and a Ph.D. from Howard.  He has lectured at Universities in Africa and South America, has patents to his credit, and has written many scientific papers.

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