Course Unit Profile

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Basic Information

Course Unit Title: NUCLEAR PLANTS I

Course Unit Code: 415II

Level of course unit

Second Cycle (Laurea magistrale) Degree Programme in Nuclear Engineering

Year of study

First year

Semester when the course is delivered

First semester

Number of ECTS credits allocated: 6

Name of Lecturer(s):

Prof.: Nicola Forgione

Language of instruction


General Information

Learning outcomes

The student who successfully completes the course will be able to demonstrate a solid knowledge of:
- basic concepts and operating principles of the main nuclear power reactors systems and their safety characteristics;
- configuration and features of nuclear power plants of different generations;
- comparison of PWR, BWR, PHWR, LMFBR and nuclear power plants of Generation II and IV.

Course contents

The main objective of the course is to give an overall vision of the nuclear technology relating to the existing and upcoming Nuclear Power Plants. In particular, this course is intended to understand the engineering design of nuclear power plants using the basic principles of reactor physics, thermodynamics, fluid flow and heat transfer.
The course is organized in seven main parts: NPPs overview; boiling heat transfer; Pressurized Water Reactors; Boiling Water Reactors; Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors (CANDU); Liquid Metal Fast Breeder Reactors; Reactivity, reactivity coefficients and fission product effects.

Specific Information

Prerequisites, co-requisites, as a prerequisite for further study


For this course the prerequisite/s is/are



Prerequisite for


Mode of delivery


face to face


Not mandatory

Teaching methods

Learning activities

Recommended or required reading

Main recommended reading includes:
Notes personally prepared by the teacher specifically for this course.

Further recommended reading includes parts of the following textbooks:
- B. Guerrini, S. Paci, “Appunti di Impianti Nucleari”, Università di Pisa.
- D.G. Cacuci, “Handbook of Nuclear Engineering”, Springer, 2010.
- Knief R. A., “Nuclear Engineering: Theory and Technology of Commercial Nuclear Power”, 2nd ed. La Grange Park, 2008.
- Neil E. Todreas & Mujid S. Kazimi, “Nuclear System I: Thermal Hydraulic Fundamentals”, Taylor & Francis; Revised. edition (settembre 2011).
- J.G. Collier, G. F. Hewitt, “Introduction to Nuclear Power”, Hemisphere, 1987.

Assessment methods and criteria

Assessment methods

Further information

Final oral exam 100%.

Assessment criteria

- The student will be assessed on his/her demonstrated ability to discuss the main course contents using the appropriate terminology. - During the oral exam the student must be able to demonstrate his/her knowledge of the course material and be able to discuss the reading matter thoughtfully and with propriety of expression. - The student's ability to explain correctly the main topics presented during the course will be assessed.

Work placement


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