Nuclear power generation certificate

The Nuclear Power Generation (NPG) graduate certificate is a multidisciplinary professional option within the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. Courses from multiple academic units constitute both the core and elective classes available to the student. This certificate is offered in person at the Tempe campus and purely online. The graduate-level certificate program requires 15 hours of coursework with a minimum of two-thirds at the 500-level or higher.

Admissions requirements

Admission into this program is continuous, normal program deadlines are used.

Applicants who have a GPA of at least 3.0 (out of 4.0) and hold a bachelor’s degree in an engineering or science discipline, such as physics, chemistry and mathematics, from a regionally accredited institution are eligible to apply to the program. Applicants are required to submit an official ASU graduate online application, official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate coursework, and a statement of career and educational goals.


Students typically begin with the study of nuclear science and engineering fundamentals. Subsequent courses focus on reactor theory, power plant dynamics, and operational safety. Elective course(s) allow students to tailor the remaining studies toward facilitating their career goals and focusing on studies tied to their discipline.

The core courses are

  • EEE 562 Nuclear Reactor Theory and Design (3)
  • EEE 563 Nuclear Reactor System Dynamics and Diagnostics (3)
  • EEE 564 Interdisciplinary Nuclear Power Operations (3)

The elective courses include

  • EEE 460/591 Nuclear Power Engineering (3) **
  • EEE 463/591 Electrical Power Plants (3)
  • EEE 598 Nuclear Fuel Cycle, Waste, and Life Cycle Management
  • EEE 598 Nuclear Safety, Security, and Safeguards
  • Other STEM courses that match your interests. Please speak to Dr. Keith Holbert ( for more information or suggestions.

** EEE 460 is a pre-requisite to the core courses; for those students who have not successfully completed such a course, EEE 460/591 may be taken as an elective prior to enrolling in the core courses and applied toward the 15 hrs required for the graduate certificate.

The Graduate College requires students to enroll in at least one graduate level credit each fall and spring semester. The certificate program must be completed within five calendar years. All courses which will count for the certificate must have a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher, and each course used to earn the certificate must be completed with a grade of ‘C’ or higher.



Course descriptions

EEE 460/591 Nuclear Power Engineering

  • Radioactivity and decay. Radiation interactions and dose. Nuclear reaction, fission and fusion theory. Fission reactors, four factor formula, moderation. Nuclear power, TMI, Chernobyl. Nuclear fuel cycle.

EEE 463/591 Electrical Power Plants

  • Generation of electric power using fossil, nuclear, and renewable, including solar, geothermal, wind, hydroelectric, biomass and ocean, energy sources. Power plant thermal cycle analysis. Cogeneration and combined cycles. Economics, operations, and design of electric power stations. Energy storage.

EEE 562 Nuclear Reactor Theory and Design

  • Principles of neutron chain reacting systems. Neutron diffusion and moderation. One, two and multi group diffusion equation solution methods. Heterogeneous reactors. Nuclear fuel steady-state performance. Core thermal-hydraulics. Core thermal design.

EEE 563 Nuclear Reactor System Dynamics and Diagnostics

  • Time dependent solution to neutron diffusion equation. Reactor kinetics and reactivity changes. Dynamics, stability and control of reactor systems. Modeling neutronic and thermal processes. System characterization in time and frequency domains. Reactor surveillance and diagnostics.

EEE 564 Interdisciplinary Nuclear Power Operations

  • Nuclear power plant systems. Study of the interrelationship and propagation of effects that systems and design changes have on one another, especially in relation to nuclear power plant safety and operations. Case studies.

For more information contact:

Keith Holbert, Ph.D. 480-965-8594