The K-State Nuclear Research and Education Reactor was made possible by a $250,000 grant from the United States Atomic Energy Commission in 1960, with operations beginning Oct. 16, 1962. The reactor is operated by the Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering in the College of Engineering.
The reactor is used in education, research, experiments, and projects. Capabilities include radioactive isotope production, neutron activation analysis, neutron radiography, and material irradiations. Researchers in geological, agricultural and biological disciplines have studies subjects such as moth dispersal patterns and rock ages and origins using reactor facilities. The reactor is available to people not affiliated with the university in research and service applications by industry, other institutions, and other groups. A grant from the U.S. Department of Energy provides support for the use of the reactor by other college and pre-college educational institutions; tours and demonstrations of the reactor are available on request.