• Offered by Research School of Physics
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Engineering
  • Areas of interest Physics, Engineering, Nuclear Physics
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course

This course is not offered in 2024

 Nuclear reactors provide 10% of global electricity generation and are used in a wide range of applications from defence to medical radioisotope production. A detailed understanding of reactor physics and an ability to simulate nuclear reactors is key to their reliable and safe operation. This course explores advanced topics relating to the physics, design and operation of nuclear reactors, and will introduce methods of simulating their properties and performance, including:

  • Analytic models for neutron transport in reactors
  • Multigroup transport theory
  • Time dependent reactors – startup and transient response
  • Nuclear data for reactor simulation
  • Resonance escape probabilities
  • Monte Carlo methods for neutron transport
  • Simulation of nuclear reactors and their components

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Explain advanced aspects of reactor physics, including neutron transport, multigroup transport theory, and reactor dynamics;
  2. Analyze reactors using appropriate models, including those employing Monte Carlo methods for neutron transport;
  3. Critically examine simulations of a nuclear reactor;
  4. Evaluate the merits of different types of simulations for nuclear reactors, assess their appropriateness for design tasks;
  5. Design simulations of nuclear reactors and their components

Indicative Assessment

  1. Weekly problem sets (50) [LO 1,2,3]
  2. Reactor simulation project (50) [LO 1,3,4,5]

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The course will include lectures and tutorials to introduce key concepts in nuclear reactor science and simulation (approximately 8 weeks) and an extended project giving more in-depth and hands-on experience in reactor simulations (4 weeks).

The expected workload will consist of approximately 130 hours throughout the semester, including:

  • For the first 8 weeks, a face-to-face component, which may consist of 1x2 hour lecture and 1x2 hour tutorial per week;
  • For the remaining 4 weeks, a face-to-face component which may consist of 1x4 hour simulation workshop;
  • Approximately 82 hours of self-directed study which will include preparation for lectures and other assessment tasks.

The time slots for the lectures / tutorials and the simulation workshops will be aligned unless an alternative arrangement is agreed upon.

Inherent Requirements

No specific inherent requirements have been identified for this course.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course students must be: Enrolled in the AENGI Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) or the AENRD Bachelor of Engineering (Research and Development); and Must have successfully completed a minimum of 96 units of tertiary courses, which must include ENGN4549 Engineering Nuclear Systems Incompatible with PHYS8212

Prescribed Texts


Preliminary Reading

Nuclear Reactor Analysis (Duderstadt and Hamilton; Wiley, New York)

Introduction to Nuclear Engineering (Lamarsh and Baratta; Prentice Hall, New Jersey)


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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