Established in 1972, Surrey's MSc in Radiation and Environmental Protection is one of the UK’s longest running programmes in the field of nuclear science and its applications. The substantial practical element of this programme enables you to relate taught material to real-world application.
In addition to the formal lectures for taught modules, the programme provides a wide range of experimental hands-on training. This includes a nine-week radiation physics laboratory which takes place in the specialist radiation laboratories within the Department of Physics (http://www.surrey.ac.uk/physics/
) at the University of Surrey. These were recently refurbished as part of a £1 million upgrade to the departmental teaching infrastructure.
Visit the website http://www.surrey.ac.uk/postgraduate/radiation-and-environmental-protection
Our programme aims to provide you with a thorough grounding in the radiation and environmental protection aspects of nuclear physics. This includes giving you an in-depth knowledge of radiation protection and showing you how the technical and organisational procedures of the discipline may be applied to the broader concept of environmental protection.
The substantial practical element of the course enables you to relate taught material to real-world application.
As well as attending formal lectures, you will carry out work in radiation laboratories. There is also an extended project in the spring and an eleven-week MSc dissertation project in the summer. You will use a wide range of radioactive sources and radiation detectors.
Three second semester modules are taught as intense one week sort-course modules. They cover nuclear metrology, nuclear waste management, and environment and legislation. These modules are offered also as part of the Continuing Professional Development programme.
The MSc benefits from both the strong research base in the Department and a number of external lecturers who are working specialists in their fields. The programme’s longstanding reputation within the field and strong industrial links ensure that our graduates are highly sought after for well-remunerated positions in both the public and private sectors.
The programme is taught by a combination of world-leading nuclear physics academics and leading experts from the UK’s radiological protection and nuclear industries.
The MSc Radiation and Environmental Protection programme comprises nine compulsory elements.
Semester 1 modules:
• Radiation Biology
This module begins with an overview of human biology, followed by a discussion of the nature of the interaction of ionising radiation with biological systems. The module emphasises the effects at the cellular level and the impact that this has on the individual and across the population. The effects of ingested radionuclides are also covered.
• Radiation Laboratory Skills
The laboratory work is designed to give you practical experience in handling radioactive substances. Initially work comprises scripted experiments, but later on students are asked to design their own.
• Radiation Measurement
This module will give you an understanding of the physical/chemical principles underlying the operation of a wide range of techniques for detection/dosimetry of ionising radiation. On completion, students will be able to make appropriate choices of instrumentation in practical situations.
• Radiation Physics
This module provides a general overview of atomic and nuclear physics. You will gain an understanding of the structure of matter, radioactivity, types of radiation and the mechanisms by which radiation interacts with matter.
Semester 2 modules:
• Environment and Legislation
This module describes the legislative framework of environmental protection, describing the major concepts in the field. It reviews the establishment and verification of systems for environmental protection, considering both legal and economic aspects. The module includes a practical review of environmental protection as applied in the nuclear and related industries.
• Extended Group Project
This module consists of Monte Carlo simulations using the FLUKA code and an intensive group research project.
• Nuclear Metrology
This module gives an introduction to radiation metrology. Calibration standards, uncertainties and quality assurance will be discussed in the first part. It will be followed by lectures on radiochemistry, nuclear dating and nuclear forensic.
• Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety
International legislative frameworks of radiation protection are discussed at the beginning of this module. From this starting point, the module covers population and personal exposures to radiation, the principles of dose calculations and example procedures for implementing radiation protection programmes. The module will also describe reactor operation and fuel composition, and includes an overview of reactor decommissioning, fuel storage and disposal.
• Research Project and Dissertation
An extensive dissertation project is carried out during the summer.
Teaching and learning
On this programme, you will gain:
- A systematic understanding of radiation and environmental protection in an academic and professional context, together with a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights
- A comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to your own research project in radiation and/or environmental protection
- Originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of radiation-based, experimental research projects
- An ability to evaluate and objectively interpret experimental data pertaining to radiation detection
- Familiarity with generic issues in management and safety and their application to radiation and environmental protection in a professional context
Core academic skills:
- The ability to plan and execute, under supervision, an experiment or investigation, and to analyse critically the results and draw valid conclusions from them
- The ability to evaluate the level of uncertainty in results, understand the significance of uncertainty analysis and be able to compare these results with expected outcomes, theoretical predictions and/or with published data – graduates should be able to evaluate the significance of their results in this context
- The ability to evaluate critically current research and advanced scholarship in the discipline of radiation protection
- The ability to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, make sound judgements in the absence of complete data, and communicate your conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences
Personal and key skills:
- The ability to both communicate complex scientific ideas and the conclusions of an experiment, investigation or project concisely, accurately and informatively
- The ability to manage your own learning and to make use of appropriate texts, research articles and other primary sources
- Responsibility for personal and professional development, and the ability to use external mentors for personal/professional purposes
The programme has produced over 500 UK and overseas graduates, many of whom have gone on to well-paid positions in companies in the nuclear and radiation sectors. In the UK we need to decommission old reactors and build new ones to provide a low-carbon source of energy. This, together with, for example, the importance of radioisotopes in fields such as medicine, means that the career prospects of our graduates are excellent.
Find out how to apply here - http://www.surrey.ac.uk/apply/postgraduate
A minimum 2.2 honours degree (or overseas equivalent) in the physical or environmental sciences, electronics or in a relevant engineering discipline.English language requirements: IELTS minimum overall: 6.5; IELTS minimum by component: 6.0