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Nuclear R&D Careers

  1. Jul 28, 2011 #1
    I'm currently dong my undergrad in EngPhys (Nuclear) at McMaster. I've been thinking about where I'd like to work after I'm done school. I think that I'd be more interested in R&D, particularly around the nitty-gritty physics and GenIV technology. What companies would be good to look at for careers? I assume that Westinghouse, GE, Areva, B&W, and Siemens all have R&D departments that do this kind of work. Also I know that even after AECL sold it's CANDU division, they still do R&D and reactor physics. SNC-Lavalin may or may not - I'm not sure. Aside from these places, what would be some good places to look into? Keep in mind that I'm Canadian, so some places won't be possible (ITER, for instance), and I only speak english, but the actual idea/process of relocation wouldn't be a problem.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 28, 2011 #2
    Would you be interested in radiation detection?
  4. Jul 28, 2011 #3
    Perhaps. I mostly want something that's fairly physics heavy (quantum, E&M, nuclear, thermo, and things like that, as opposed to statics, mechanics, etc). What would a career in radiation detection entail? What would the day to day work be like? Are there a lot of opportunities in it?
  5. Jul 28, 2011 #4


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    Siemens merged their nuclear business with Framatome, which became AREVA. Westinghouse was sold by BNFL to Toshiba and Shaw Group. In the US, Framatome bought the commercial part of B&W. There is a B&W in the US, The Babcock & Wilcox Company (http://www.babcock.com/about/profile.html [Broken]), which is the part that wasn't sold to Framatome. They are rebuilding to provide services to the commercial industry and also to introduce a new small modular reactor design under the mPower name. B&W Canada is a subsidiary. http://www.babcock.com/about/business_units/ [Broken]

    GE has moved is nuclear business into GEH, a partnership with Hitachi, and GNF, also a partnership with Hitachi. GEH is responsible for the plant design and non-fuel core components, while GNF does the nuclear fuel and core design.

    All the companies are involved in many areas of nuclear energy. Ideally, they'd like to be selling new plants, but that's rather slow in the US and Europe at the moment, but China is building Westinghouse and AREVA plants. Unfortunately, the deals allow the Chinese to acquire the technology, so Westinghouse and AREVA will lose out after the first plants are up and running.

    The Koreans have also licensed Westinghouse and AREVA technology, and over the last two decades have developed their own technology such that they now compete on the global market against W and AREVA. KNF and affiliates won a big project in the UAE to supply four units.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  6. Jul 29, 2011 #5
    What about a research laboratory (government or commercial)?
  7. Jul 29, 2011 #6
    Well, AECL is the only one I know of here in Canada that does anything like that. Down in the states, I suppose ORNL and INL would be good. Are there any other research labs around that do that kind of work?
  8. Jul 29, 2011 #7
    http://www.energy.gov/organization/labs-techcenters.htm" [Broken] labs might be a good place to start
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  9. Jul 29, 2011 #8

    That's a good list.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  10. Jul 29, 2011 #9
    Excellent list, thanks! A lot of them still have that annoying "Must be a U.S. citizen" thing though. Kind of annoying.
  11. Jul 29, 2011 #10
    It can be physics heavy in the topics that you're looking for, but also a lot involved with software and electronics. There is certainly a lot of physics involved in making detector equipment.

    A short list of companies that do this in Canada are Bubbletech and Canberra, but there are others too. I'm sure a Google search can provide some help here.
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