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Unclear about nuclear?
Young people (18+) who are interested in but unsure about entering the nuclear industry will find assistance in this free course, Unclear about nuclear? It will help develop their understanding of nuclear energy, improve their study and maths skills in a nuclear context and aid them in investigating further training (within and beyond the OU) or employment opportunities in the nuclear industry.
Course learning outcomes
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- engage in learning about the science behind nuclear energy
- have been introduced to online learning using OU pedagogies
- be able to improve your study skills in a nuclear context, so equipping you for further study and in particular study of the courses STG074 Learn about nuclear energy or ST174 Inside nuclear energy.
- be able to improve your maths skills in a nuclear context and equip yourself for further learning, within and beyond the OU
- be informed about further training and study, within and beyond the OU, that could equip you for employment in the nuclear industry.
You can start this course right now without signing-up. Click on any of the course content sections below to start at any point in this course.
If you want to be able to track your progress, earn a free Statement of Participation, and access all course quizzes and activities, sign-up.
- Learning outcomes
- Online learning
- 1 The motivation for nuclear energy
- 2 The science behind nuclear energy
- 3 How a reactor works
- 3 How a reactor works
- 3.1 A comparison to a conventional power plant
- 3.2 Fission and the chain reaction
- 3.3 Criticality
- 3.4 Controlling the fission chain reaction
- 3.5 Fissile, fissionable and fertile
- 3.6 Moderation
- 3.7 Specific nuclear fuels
- 3.8 Enrichment
- 3.9 Fast or thermal?
- 3.10 The activity of spent nuclear fuel
- 4 Waste management
- 5 Health effects of radiation
- 6 Regulation
- 7 Future developments
- 8 Sustainability
- 9 Where next?
- Keep on learning
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Creative commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence.
However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions and our FAQs.
Full copyright details can be found in the Acknowledgements section of each week.
For further information, take a look at our frequently asked questions which may give you the support you need.Have a question?
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About this free course
20 hours study
Level 1: Introductory
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Free statement of participation on completion of these courses.