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Short Learning Programme
Advanced Reactor Analysis I
Although the majority of the methods of reactor analysis are based on multi-group neutron diffusion theory, the generation of multi-group cross sections requires a series of calculations, which are outside the scope of diffusion theory. Such calculations involve the determination of the energy dependence of neutron flux in various regions in the reactor and are called spectrum calculations. They constitute a very important element of reactor analysis and as such they must be comprehended in a serious study of reactor theory. Some problems in reactor analysis cannot be analysed by the diffusion theory approximation and require the use of neutron transport methods of either the integral-differential or integral type. Thus, the comprehension of neutron transport theory is essential for a complete understanding of reactor analysis. The objective of this course is to present the methods of transport theory on one hand and the methods of neutron spectrum calculations on the other. After taking this course, it is hoped that the participant will attain a good understanding of the majority of the methods used for reactor analysis.

Purpose of the course:

Successful Participants will should gain knowledge of, and skills in: The neutron transport theory The state-of-the-art methods of neutron spectrum calculations. (Neutron thermalization, reactivity changes, Monte Carlo methods etc.).

Admission requirements:

Admission requirements: 
A basic knowledge of reactor analysis is assumed. Prior acquaintance with multi-group diffusion theory and solution methods is also expected. A good knowledge of advanced calculus will help in neutron transport theory. However, even if some of the expertise mentioned above is missing, this course would be an opportunity to develop abilities in those areas.
Learning assumed to be in place: 
NUCI 711 and NUCI 887 are required for this course.

Course outcomes and assessment criteria :

Course outcomes and the associated assessment criteria: 

Study Unit


Assessment Criteria


After completion of this module, participants should have obtained:

  • Specialist knowledge and understanding in neutron transport theory, neutron slowing down, and resonance absorption and neutron thermalisation.

I (the assessor) will know that the participant has achieved this specific outcome if he/she is able to demonstrate specialist knowledge and understanding of:

  • the state-of-the-art calculation methods of deterministic transport theory
  • methods used for the determination of neutron energy spectrum in reactor analysis
  • the terminology and methods of resonance absorption calculations as part of the fast spectrum codes.
  • research for development of new calculation methods in these fields.
  • the role of a neutrons specialist and take part in joint projects with thermal-hydraulics specialists.
  • the use of the knowledge obtained as a base for pursuing doctoral level research in neutrons.


Assessment of assignments and a written examination. Attendance at the lecture sessions is also required and will be included in the final evaluation. Pass rate of at least 50% is necessary.
Method of assessment: 
Achievement of the outcomes will be assessed by means of class tests, practical assignments and a written exam. Pass rate of at least 50% is necessary.

Additional information

Mode of delivery: 
Target group: 
Professionals, scientists and engineers working in the power generation industry (nuclear, chemical and mechanical engineering industry), regulatory institutions, government departments and nuclear energy institutions that need to develop technical expertise in reactor analysis.
Contact us
Ms Sue-Mari van Rooyen
Telephone number: 
018 299 4369