One of the top Nuclear Engineers in the world
Lefteris Tsoukalas is considered to be one of the five best Nuclear Engineers in the world. While he grew up in Greece, his talent was fully acknowledged in America, where he graduated from the University. He believes deeply that Greece could defeat the economic crisis if only the country could invest in the field of (nuclear) energy. In fact, he has noted in many interviews the importance of nuclear energy for Greece, and insists it constitutes a one-way street not only for Greece, but aslo for the humanity.
He was born in 1958 in the region of Ilia, Greece. As a child, life was particularly hard those days, with many obstacles. For example there was no electricity. He went to primary school in Gastouni, a town in Ilia, where there was not even heating. It was his enlightened teachers who inspired him and opened his eyes to the marvellous world of nature, the rules of the greek language, and the laws of science. After a few years he graduated from the highschool of Amaliada, a town in Northwestern Ilia, where a team of innovative young professors introduced him to the basic principles of mathematics, physics, chemistry and literature.
Lefteris Tsoukalas got his Bachelor of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois in 1981. He continued with his masters in Nuclear Engineering from the same University, in 1983. Finally, he obtained his Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering/Computer Science at the University of Illinois in 1989.
He was an Associate Director at the Center for Neural Engineering Applications
University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Lab (Knoxville, Tennessee) from July 1989 to July 1992. He there did joint research and faculty appointment at UT and ORNL coordinating research on neural networks and AI applications to monitoring, instrumentation and control of power plants and energy generation, transmission and distribution systems.
He was also an Invited Research Fellow at the Japan Atomic Energy Research Institute (Tokai-mura, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan) from August 1992 to August 1993, where he did research on intelligent monitoring systems for nuclear applications.
From 1994 until today he is a Professor at Purdue University. He is also a Professor at the University of Thessalia, at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
He has been a counselor for the International Atomic Energy Agency, the US Department of Energy, the National Nuclear Safety Administration in China, the Agency of Science, Technology and Research of Singapore, the Academy of Athens, the Ministry of Industry and the General Secretariat for Research and Technology.
He has also been honored with the «Humboldt Prize 2009» (a great honor in the field of science in Germany).