You are here because you want to find out how much Nuclear Engineers make. Yes, before you spend time pursuing a major in college, it’s important that you find out how much experts in that field make. We’ve talked about salaries of other engineering fields in our previous article, so go on our archives and dig them out if you’re interested. So today, we want to consider Nuclear Engineer salary, how much they make annually, but before that let’s briefly consider what Nuclear Engineering entails, the career prospects, top schools offering it etc..
What Is Nuclear Engineering?
Nuclear engineering is the branch of engineering concerned with the application of nuclear physics concepts to the breaking down (fission) or combining (fusion) of atomic nuclei, as well as other sub-atomic phenomena. It covers the design, interaction, and maintenance of systems and components such as reactors, power plants, and armament in the subfield of nuclear fission.
The study of medical and other applications of radiation, notably ionizing radiation, nuclear safety, heat/thermodynamics transmission, nuclear fuel, or other related technology (e.g., radioactive waste management), and nuclear proliferation issues are also included in this discipline. Chemical engineering and electrical engineering are two other branches of this profession.
Nuclear power facilities currently provide approximately 20% of the country’s electricity. Nuclear engineers work in the nuclear power business or for national laboratories, either directly or indirectly. Industry research is currently focused on developing reactor designs that are both cost-effective and resistant to proliferation while also providing passive safety features. Some government (national) labs conduct research in areas where private sector doesn’t, such as nuclear fuels and fuel cycles, advanced reactor designs, and nuclear weapon design and maintenance.
The US Navy Nuclear Power Program, which includes its Nuclear Power School in South Carolina, is a key pipeline/source of trained people (both military and civilian) for US reactor sites. Nuclear engineering employment is expected to grow by 9% by 2022, owing to the need to replace retiring nuclear engineers, maintain and update power plant safety systems, and enhance nuclear medicine applications.
Read also: What Is Audio Engineer Salary?
What Do Nuclear Engineers Do?
A nuclear engineer is responsible for the design, operation, and maintenance of nuclear power plants. They work on the research and development of the instruments, procedures, and systems that are used to benefit from radiation and nuclear power.
Because nuclear engineers work in a number of contexts, their schedules can vary depending on the specialty they work in. The majority of nuclear engineers work in the electricity production, transmission, and distribution industries, as well as in the federal government.
How To Become a Nuclear Engineer?
To get an entry-level position in the private sector, you need a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering. The company may require a master’s or doctoral degree in some situations. A high school student interested in this field of study should start studying science and math subjects as soon as possible.
Laboratory, classroom, and field study are all part of bachelor’s degree programs. Many schools and universities offer cooperative education programs that allow students to gain experience while completing their studies. Some colleges provide a five-year program leading to a bachelor’s and master’s degree.
Engineers with a graduate degree can work as university instructors or in development and research. There are 5-6 year cooperative education programs to consider that combine employment and classroom learning and may help with the cost of their education. A master’s or doctoral program in engineering fundamentals and advanced mathematics is made up of laboratory, classroom, and research endeavors. Working on a corporate or government research grant in collaboration with a professor requires the completion of a research study.
How Much Do Nuclear Engineers Make?
Nuclear Engineer Salary: As of November 29, 2021, the median income for a Nuclear Engineer in the United States is $240,404. Nuclear Engineer salaries typically vary from $73,634 to $407,175. Keep in mind that compensation ranges might vary significantly depending on a variety of criteria, including your position, education, certifications, supplementary talents, and the number of years you’ve worked in your field. Salary.com lets you figure out your exact pay target by providing more online, real-time compensation data than any other website.
How Much Do Nuclear Engineers Make In Navy?
Navy Nuclear Engineer salaries in the United States range from $16,923 to $453,332 per year, with a typical compensation of $81,426. Navy Nuclear Engineers in the middle earn between $81,428 and $204,983, with the top 86 percent earning $453,332.
Top Schools Offering Nuclear Engineering
The following schools offer qualitative education in the field of Nuclear Engineering. Feel free to contact them and get more information about their program:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Nuclear engineering at MIT stretches back to the 1940s, when individuals of many fields came together to form a new, cutting-edge field that combined the finest of theoretical scientific study with practical answers to real-world issues. That spirit lives on at MIT, where the nuclear engineering program focuses on the development, control, and use of nuclear processes and radiation to address some of the world’s most serious social and environmental issues.
Students studying nuclear engineering at MIT are urged to consider not only current demands, but also future generations’ needs. MIT does this through undergraduate and graduate programs that teach students about nuclear energy basics as well as its primary applications in energy generation, security, and health care. Students benefit from a number of unique resources offered by this department, including a new communication lab, a floating nuclear power plant, and an ARC fusion reactor, as well as new faculty hires in fission and fusion, increased enrollment, and access to one of the world’s most prestigious engineering institutions.
Georgia Institute Of Tech
Students studying nuclear engineering at Georgia Tech will do so in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, which merged with the School of Nuclear Engineering in 1984. The School of Engineering has a long history of success, dating back to 1962. The Woodruff School of Engineering and Medicine provides one undergraduate degree (BSNRE), two master’s degrees (MSNE and MSMP), and one doctoral degree in Nuclear and Radiological Engineering (NRE) and Medical Physics (MP) (PhD NRE). It has a long history of being acknowledged for its quality on a national level.
Students studying nuclear engineering at Georgia Tech can expect to be tested on a wide range of skills, including the application of mathematical, scientific, and engineering principles; the design of systems, components, processes, and experiments to meet a variety of economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, and medical needs; data analysis and interpretation; teamwork, problem-solving, and professional responsibility; and communication skills.
University Of California Berkeley
Nuclear engineering is offered as an undergraduate and graduate degree at the University of California, Berkeley, which was founded in 1958. Even in this highly specialized field of study, the department fosters an integrative approach, thus students can be found working on sophisticated energy systems and medicinal applications, as well as waste management and energy production.
Electrical engineering, computer science, mechanical engineering, and chemical engineering are also popular double majors for Berkeley nuclear engineering students. Campus research facilities, national laboratories, internships, and research opportunities are all available to undergraduate students.
Recent nuclear engineering graduates have found jobs in laboratories, government organizations at all levels, industry, and academia. Nuclear waste management, materials engineering, fission and fusion, nuclear transfer, and sophisticated medical applications are among Berkeley’s specialties. Students benefit from the department’s close ties to renowned research institutions as the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and Los Alamos National Laboratory.
The nuclear engineering program at the United States Military Academy, also known as West Point, aims to meet the following mission: “To educate and inspire cadets through physics and nuclear engineering course work, research, and support to the West Point Leader Development System so that each graduate is a commissioned leader of character committed to the values of Duty, Honor, and Country; and prepared for a career of professional excellence.”
West point students are expected to build knowledge in basic mathematics, science, and engineering principles, as well as experiment design and implementation, data analysis, and interpretation. Through applied problem-solving and real-world circumstances, they must also demonstrate the ability to use their knowledge creatively and constructively. Teamwork, professionalism, leadership, and communication are also valued at West Point. In addition to reacting to the ever-changing needs of the civilian sector, students are expected to be able to put their training into practice while serving in the Army.
Purdue University’s nuclear engineering tradition dates back to the 1950s, when Alexander Sesonske, a professor of chemical engineering, created an interdisciplinary graduate seminar for students from other engineering disciplines that included an introduction to nuclear engineering for chemical engineers.
Nuclear Reaction Engineering, co-written by Samuel Glasstone and based on Sesonske’s research, is still used as an introductory textbook in the area. Purdue has been a pioneer in nuclear engineering since then, particularly in terms of the solutions the profession can provide to some of the world’s most pressing issues.
Purdue’s curriculum is known for its research, and students can participate in research at the undergraduate level that they might not be able to do at other universities. Some students have even received international recognition for their study. Purdue also has more than $10 million in outside research funding, which has financed research in domains like plasma interactions, biomedical applications, and applied intelligent systems to radiation shielding, fission reactor physics, and thermal hydraulics.
Nuclear engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology is unusual in that it offers the state’s only authorized B.S. degree in the field.
It is also one of the country’s earliest authorized nuclear engineering programs, with a strong reputation as one of the field’s leading institutes. Graduates work in the engineering sector, national-level laboratories, medical institutes, government organizations, and a variety of academic institutions.
The Bachelor of Science degree is the program’s foundation, including both fundamental nuclear engineering knowledge and general professional abilities like problem solving, communication, ethics, leadership, and research methodologies. Students will study advanced engineering topics such as reactor fluid dynamics, heat transfer, reactor physics, nuclear radiation, nuclear waste management, laboratory operation, nuclear materials, and nuclear system design in addition to these skills. Numerous on-campus resources are available to students, including numerous laboratories, a nuclear reactor, and cutting-edge computer facilities, including mainframes and a supercomputer.