The Nuclear Reactor Laboratory (NRL) is an interdepartmental center that operates a 5-MW research reactor. NRL provides opportunities for undergraduates to participate with NRL's professional staff and faculty from many departments in conducting research in neutron activation analysis; radiation damage to materials; neutron scattering; radioactive isotope production; nuclear medicine; nuclear track detection; health physics, including research directed at radiation dose reduction in LWRs neutron radiography and autoradiography; and environmental occupational health research. Since the MIT reactor is also used by local hospitals, commercial firms, and other educational institutions, work in conjunction with such outside organizations is often possible.
Examples of UROP Opportunities within the last year include:
1) Advanced Materials Studies - A Course 22 undergraduate helped to design and construct an in-core testing facility to evaluate a new material as the next-generation nuclear reactor fuel cladding.
2) Boron Neutron Capture Therapy - A Course 22 undergraduate helped to prepare and test a new boron compound for future small animal irradiations using Boron Neutron Capture Therapy techniques.
3) Neutron Scattering Studies - Two Course 6 undergraduates in two different projects worked to design a LabVIEW software interface to control pre-existing hardware in two neutron scattering spectrometers. Their work will create a remote user capability for NRL's neutron scattering instruments.
4) Nanofluid Heat Transfer Studies – Two Course 22 and one course 2 undergraduate participated in nanofluid experiments, a collaboration between Nuclear Science and Engineering Department and NRL, in assisting with single-phase heat transfer experiment and nanofluid characterization.
5) Biomedical Studies of Vanadium in Human Hair - A visiting undergraduate participated in preparing 200 human hair samples for trace element analysis for vanadium. This is a collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital that attempts to demonstrate a link between high vanadium concentration and Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS).
These research programs are continuing into the next year, and we always have exciting opportunities for undergraduates. For UROP opportunities at NRL, contact Dr. Lin-wen Hu (email@example.com) for more information.
UROP for Credit:
Arranged through the faculty supervisor's academic department.
Students must receive radiation safety training. Contact the Safety Coordinator: Mr. Thomas H. Newton, NW12-116A, x3-4211, firstname.lastname@example.org.