Should I go with a PC for nuclear engineering?
There's no one answer. Go to one place and you'll see everyone using PCs. Go to another in the exact same discipline and it will be linux boxes. Yet another will be filled with Mac fanatics.
The best thing to do is to ask your prospective school what they recommend. You want the platform that is best suited to the tools they will expect you to be using. That's all that matters for now because you won't be using that computer once you graduate. Your machine will be out of date by then and that's when it will be time to go shopping again.
Most people I know use PCs with either windows or linux (or both). Nuclear engineering uses a lot of custom/homebrewed/old software that isn't available on windows (or doesn't support the full feature set).
If you are a student just starting out I would recommend you check with your school and get what ever the majority of other students are going to be using. As a student there is safety in numbers.
On a more personal note, I would never pay the Mac premium. It isn't that I dislike their products, I dislike the company.
the software isn't available on windows??? what is it available on?
Linux. Lots of scientific software is linux only. This is mostly programs that were written for a specific purpose by a company or organization many years ago and have just been updated as necessary. In many cases there are windows ports but these frequently have reduced feature sets and/or require potentially annoying work arounds.
Personally, I use windows 99.99% of the time. My office has a shared linux box for using linux only software. I have colleagues which use super computers which are usually linux based.
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