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Research Professor Emeritus
(919) 966-9923


Adjunct Professor, Nuclear Engineering
NC State University

Conventional, alternative and nuclear energy systems and technology; nuclear fuel cycle; nuclear non proliferation and transmutation

ENST 204 – Energy in a Sustainable Environment
ENST 307 – Energy and Material Flows in the Environment and Society
ENST 311 – Systems Analysis for Sustainability
ENST 420 – Community Design and Green Architecture

2008 – Present. Director, Center for Sustainable Energy, Environment and Environmental Development, Institute for the Environment, UNC.
2006 – 2007. Research Professor, Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering and Institute for the Environment, UNC.
1997 – 2005. Deputy Director and Directory of Research Programs, CEP, UNC-Chapel Hill.
1994 – 2002. Chief Scientist, Research Triangle Institute, Research Triangle Park, NC.
1990 – 1994. Associate Vice President for Research, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.
1989 – 1990. Manager, Environment and Health Division, EG&G-Reynolds Electrical & Engineering Company, Inc., Las Vegas, NV.
1981 – 1989. Director, Environmental Research Center, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.
1977 – 1981. Director, Remote Sensing and Advanced Monitoring Systems Divisions, Environmental Monitoring Systems Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Las Vegas, NV.


Ph.D., Environmental Sciences and Engineering, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1974M.S., Nuclear Physics, University of Alabama, 1963
B.A., Physics, Gannon University, Erie, Pennsylvania, 1955

Selected Publications

Li, J., M-S Yim, D. N. McNelis, 2008. Assessing the Proliferation Resistance of Nuclear Fuel Cycle Systems Using a Fuzzy Logic-Based Barrier Method, Nuclear Technology, Vol 162, June 2008.

Strahala, M. P., M-S Yim, D. N. McNelis, 2007. Thermal Loading-based Investigation of Yucca Mountain Repository Capacity for the U.S. Spent Fuel Inventory, Annals of Nuclear Energy.

Liu, Y., M-S Yim, D. N. McNelis, 2007. Target Design and Optimization for Accelerator Driven Transmutation Systems, Nuclear Technology.

McNelis, D. N., “Setting the Stage for International Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facilities”, Proceedings of International Conference: Multilateral Technical and Organizational Approaches for the Nuclear Fuel Cycle Aimed at Strengthening the Non-Proliferation Regime, Russian Federal Atomic Energy Agency and the IAEA, Moscow, Russia, July 13-15, 2005. (to be published)

McNelis, D. N. 2002. “State’s Efforts in Small Business Development – Two Models”, In: Successes and Difficulties of Small Innovative Firms in Russian Nuclear Cities, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C.

McNelis, D. N. and G. E. Schweitzer. 2001. “Environmental Security: an Evolving Concept.”, Feature Article,Environmental Science and Technology 35, No.5, pp. 108-113.

McNelis, D. N., 1998. “Research, Technology Development, and Commercialization.” In: Technology Commercialization: Russian Challenges, American Lessons, National Research Council and Russian Academy of Sciences, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C.