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Core Modules and Module details

The course is designed to take 11 months, from October to August each academic year, with students taking the equivalent of ten standard (16 lectures each) taught modules plus a long research project and dissertation.

Nuclear Energy Modules


Reactor Physics
Dr G Parks

Core physics and shielding – steady state power and shapes, depletion control elements and use of poisons, core kinetics and system control.

16 lectures NE MPhil

Reactor Engineering & Thermal-hydraulics
Dr E Shwageraus, Dr A White

Coolant types, thermal cycles, heat transfer, thermal limits and Reactor systems, their optimisation and operating characteristics including normal operation and how to address main types of fault condition.

24 lectures NE MPhil

Dr M Stopher

Fuel and reactor materials – including selection, safety and life issues – radiation behaviour and damage, structural integrity and fracture mechanics, EAC

16 lectures NE MPhil

Fuel Cycle, Waste & Decommissioning
Professor I Farnan, R Skelton

Whole fuel cycle: mining to waste and how waste is managed, decommissioning principles.

16 lectures NE MPhil

Nuclear Safety Principles and Practice
Dr M Stopher

This module will provide an understanding and an ability to recognise key design and safety issues and how they might be addressed, including the principles and practices of reactor safety as it affects design, operation and justification of modern reactors.

8 lectures NE MPhil

Nuclear Technology Policy
Professor W Nuttall

Energy studies and climate change, economics of energy, nuclear politics, proliferation and physical security.

16 lectures NE MPhil

Nuclear Practice
Various External Lecturers

The module consists of a series of lectures by senior external members of the UK nuclear industry and related government bodies, giving their viewpoint and experience of important past events on the current prospects and issues that affect the sector.

8 lectures

NE MPhil



Computational Reactor Modelling

The module covers the basic theory and methods in computational reactor physics followed by a series of practicums with hands-on experience of using state-of-the-art computer codes used for simulation of nuclear systems.

16 lectures

NE MPhil


Advanced Fission and Fusion Reactor Systems
Dr E Shwageraus

This module will provide an understanding of advanced reactor systems, why they are being pursued, their advantages and their difficulties in proceeding to become commercially viable designs.

Additionally, an introduction to the main ideas behind nuclear fusion for energy, focusing on the basic ideas and concepts and the practical issues of bringing fusion to market, will be provided.

16 lectures NE MPhil

All these modules are developed specifically for the Nuclear Energy course.  They draw on existing teaching in Nuclear Power Engineering from Part IIB of the Engineering Tripos and Nuclear Materials from Part III of the Natural Sciences Tripos.  Also, Nuclear Technology Policy makes use of some material from the Technology Policy MPhil in the Judge Business School.

Students are required to take a majority (equivalent of at least five standard modules) of the core nuclear energy material, including those marked with asterisks, which are compulsory.

Course Requirements

Students are required to take a majority of the core nuclear energy subjects, including five compulsory taught nuclear modules:

Michaelmas & Lent Terms Either (standard stream)
one to four electives from a defined range of existing technical or management modules
Or (research stream) one to four electives from a defined range of existing technical modules
Easter Term Long research project/dissertation May-August


Teaching is through lectures, seminars (which all students are expected to attend), supervisions, distinguished lectures and dissertation supervision. Assessment is through written exam papers taken early in the Easter Term with a 15,000 word marked dissertation on a research topic which is to be completed by the end of August.

Elective Modules

Students chose between one and four modules; October to March.

Either (standard stream): one to four electives from a defined range of existing technical or management modules
Or (research stream): one to four electives from a defined range of existing technical modules (as agreed by the research supervisor)

The following list indicates the elective modules planned to be offered for the next Academic Year. Modules are drawn from existing courses offered within the Engineering Tripos, Natural Sciences Tripos and as part of MPhils taught by the Judge Business School.


Competitive Strategy In the Digital Age TPE24


Technology Policy: Concepts and Frameworks TP1 JBS MPhil
Economic Foundations of Technology Policy* TP2 JBS MPhil
Business, Government and Technology in Emerging Markets TP4 JBS Mphil
Policy, Design and Evaluation TP5 JBS MPhil
Managing the Innovation Process TPE20 JBS Mphil
Entrepreneurial Science & Innovation Policy TPE21 JBS Mphil
Electricity and Environment TPE22 JBS Mphil
Negotiation Skills TPE23 JBS Mphil
Management of Technology 4E4 Eng Tripos

International Business Economics


Eng Tripos

Accounting and Finance


Eng Tripos

Strategic Management


Eng Tripos

* Pre-requisite for TP5


Practical Optimisation


Eng Tripos

Sustainable Energy


Eng Tripos

Sustainable Design & Implementation

ESD 560


Driving Change towards Sustainability

ESD 150


Particle & Nuclear Physics/Comp Physics


Nat Sci Tripos

Extraction & re-cycling M3 Nat Sci Tripos
Steels M21 Nat Sci Tripos
Corrosion & Protection M15 Nat Sci Tripos

Electrochemical Engineering


Chem Eng Tripos

Fluid Mechanics & Environment


Chem Eng Tripos

Computational Fluid Dynamics


Eng Tripos

Turbomachinery I 4A3 Eng Tripos
Renewable Electrical Power 4B19 Eng Tripos
Design Methods 4C4 Eng Tripos
Design Case Studies 4C5 Eng Tripos
Random and Non-linear Vibrations 4C7 Eng Tripos
Concrete and Masonry Structures 4D7 Eng Tripos
Pre-stressed Concrete 4D8*** Eng Tripos
Structural Steelwork 4D10 Eng Tripos
Construction Management 4D16*** Eng Tripos
Plate & Shell Structures 4D17** Eng Tripos

Control System Design


Eng Tripos

Robust & Non-Linear Systems and Control


Eng Tripos

Computer Vision & Robotics


Eng Tripos

PDE & Variational Methods


Eng Tripos

Present and Future Energy Systems


Eng Tripos

Medical Physics


Eng Tripos

Please note, occasionally modules may be unavailable.

** Not running 2017-18. *** - 4D8 and 4D16 are run alternate years

More information about these modules can be found at:

Engineering Tripos for access to the module syllabuses (modules are grouped, for example 4D7 would be found under Group D Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering).  Clicking on the title of the module will bring up a syllabus.
Natural Sciences Tripos:

4th Year Project Deadlines

 May 2017
Each student submits two copies of Final report plus an extra copy of their technical abstract, plus their log book or electronic equivalent to Group Centres by 4pm.


« April 2019 »