MP 6759: Radiation Shielding Principles and Computations


Credit Hours:3-0-3
Prerequisites:Graduate standing in engineering or a related discipline
Catalog Description:

Principles of Radiation Shielding; Design of Shields; Computational Methods for Analysis of Shielding;  Emphasis on Monte Carlo Simulation as a Shielding Tool.


J. K. Shultis and R. E. Faw, Radiation Shielding, American Nuclear Society, 2000.

Instructors:Nolan E. Hertel
  • N.M. Schaeffer (ed.), Reactor Shielding for Nuclear Engineers, AEC, 1973, TID-25951.
  • P. H. McGinley, Shielding Techniques for Radiation Oncology Facilities, Medical Physics Publishing, 1998.
  • R. G. Jaeger (Editor-In-Chief), Engineering Compendium on Radiation Shielding, Springer-Verlag, New York, 1968.
  • J. Wood, Computational Methods in Reactor Shielding, Pergamon Press, 1982.
  • H. Goldstein, Fundamental Aspects of Reactor Shielding, Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, Inc., 1959.
  • E.E. Lewis and W.F. Miller, Jr., Computational Methods of Neutron Transport, Wiley-Interscience, pp. 296-358, 1984.
  • L. L. Carter and E.D. Cashwell, Particle Transport Simulation with the Monte Carlo Method, TID-26607, NTIS, 1975.
  • A. E. Profio, Radiation Shielding and Dosimetry, Wiley-Interscience, 1979.
  • A.B. Chilton, J. K. Shultis and R.W. Faw, Prentice-Hall, Principles of Radiation Shielding, 1984.
  • J. E. Turner, H. A. Wright and R.N. Hamm, Review Article:  A Monte Carlo Primer for Health Physicists,” Health Physics Journal 48, 717-733, 1985.
  • D. E. Knuth, The Art of Computer Programming, Vol. 2: Seminumerical Algorithms, Addison-Wesley, 1969, Chapter 3 – Random Numbers.
  • A. Biejalew, Fundamentals of the Monte Carlo Method for Neutral and Charged Particle Transport,
  • NCRP Report No. 144, Radiation Protection for Particle Accelerator Facilities, 2003.
  • NCRP Repot No. 147, Structural Shielding Design for Medical X-Ray Imaging Facilities, 2004.
  • NCRP Report No. 151, Structural Shielding Design and Evaluation for Megavoltage x-Ray and Gamma-Ray Radiotherapy Facilities, 2005.
  1. Fundamental Concepts
    1. Definition Of A Shield
    2. Characterizations of Radiation Fields and Sources
    3. Review Of Particle Interactions
    4. Common Radiation Sources Encountered in Shield Design
    5. Detector Responses
      1. Generalized Fluence-Dependent Response Functions
      2. Energy Pathways In Photon Interactions
      3. General Dosimetry And Dose Concepts
      4. Fluence-To-Dose Equivalent Conversion Coefficients
  2. Monte Carlo Simulation For Shielding Analysis
    1. Review Of Required Statistical Concepts
    2. Generation And Testing Of Pseudorandom Numbers
    3. Probability Distribution Functions
    4. Sampling Distributions
    5. Geometry Specification And Particle Tracking
    6. Scoring And Estimators
    7. Biasing Techniques (Variance Reduction)
    8. Simulating Photon Transport And Scattering
    9. Simulating Neutron Transport And Reactions
    10. Simulating Charged-Particle Sampling
  3. Basic Methods for Radiation Dose Calculations
  4. Special Techniques for Photons
    1. Buildup Factors
    2. Extending Point Kernel Techniques To Include Buildup
    3. Point Kernel Codes
    4. Medical Facility Shielding
  5. Special Techniques for Neutrons
  6. Transport Solutions
    1. Straight-Ahead Approximation
    2. Discrete Ordinates
    3. Method Of Moments
  7. Albedos And Duct Penetration Methods
  8. Skyshine And Air Scatter


  1. To formally introduce students to a range of radiation shielding analyses as applied in a variety of nuclear facilities.
  2. To provide a detailed examination in the use of Monte Carlo techniques in nuclear applications, particularly fixed source shielding problems.
  3. To gain insight into the design considerations for shielding.