CHME 476. Nuclear Fuel Cycles


1. Course number and name

CHME 476. Nuclear Fuel Cycles

2. Credits and contact hours

3 credit hours = 45 contact hours per semester

3. Instructor’s or course coordinator’s name

  Dr. Paul K. Andersen

4. Text book, title, author, and year

Andersen (2017), Nuclear Fuels. (Available on course Canvas site.)

a. other supplemental materials


5. Specific course information

a. catalog description:  Physical and chemical processes in the conventional nuclear fuel cycle: uranium mining and milling, conversion, enrichment, fuel fabrication, reactor operations, interim storage, reprocessing and recycling, waste treatment and disposal. Alternative fuel cycles and future prospects.

b. prerequisites: CHME 470 co-requisites: none

c. required, elective, or selected elective (as per Table 5-1): elective

6. Specific goals for the course

a. The student will be able to…

  • Write and explain the basic principles and equations related to the conventional nuclear fuel cycle.  
  • Solve problems involving chemical and nuclear processes in the conventional nuclear fuel cycle.
  • Given a verbal or pictorial description, create useful mathematical models of chemical engineering systems in the nuclear fuel cycle.
  • Discuss the global environmental, social, and economic implications of nuclear fuel cycles

b. Criterion 3 Student Outcomes specifically addressed by this course are found in a mapping of outcomes against all CHME courses in the curriculum.

7. Brief list of topics to be covered

  • Types of Nuclear Fuels
  • Interim Storage of Spent Nuclear Fuel
  • Uranium Mining and Milling
  • Reprocessing and Recycling
  • Conversion and Purification
  • Waste Processing
  • Fuel Fabrication
  • Final Disposal
  • Reactor Operations
  • Alternative Fuel Cycles

Common Syllabus Addendum

The NMSU Department of Chemical Engineering maintains a syllabus addendum containing course requirements common to all courses with the CH E prefix online.  This document is accessible from the URL: