Nuclear Science and Engineering

A strong pink glow seen through a reinforced porthole.

An intense beam of pink "plasma" strikes a metal surface in the DIONISOS experiment which is used for studying the interaction between plasmas, the fourth state of matter, and materials. (Image courtesy of Plasma Surface Interaction Science Center at PSFC (MIT).)

Research and education in nuclear science and engineering first began at MIT in 1948.

The program was one of the first of its kind in the country, and civilians and military personnel flocked to the Institute to learn about nuclear weapons and propulsion. Today the department focuses on creating a broad range of nuclear engineering applications that improve human and environmental health. MIT researchers conducted one of the first studies on nuclear reactors for large-scale electricity generation in 1953. Today we are working to make nuclear power the safest, most economical, and most environmentally friendly way of generating electricity.

Despite having roots at MIT that span more than 60 years, nuclear engineering is relatively new compared to other engineering disciplines, and its many applications will benefit society in areas from healthcare and radiation detection to space exploration and advanced materials. Our community members make key scientific and engineering advances in fission engineering and nuclear energy, fusion and plasma physics, and nuclear science and technology. We conduct research to support the International Tokamak Experimental Reactor project and collaborate with experts throughout industry and academia.

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Nuclear Science and Engineering Courses

Archived Nuclear Science and Engineering Courses

Some prior versions of courses listed above have been archived in OCW's DSpace@MIT repository for long-term access and preservation. Links to archived prior versions of a course may be found on that course's "Other Versions" tab.

Additionally, the Archived Nuclear Science and Engineering Courses page has links to every archived course from this department.