Nuclear Reactor Lab

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Welcome to the homepage of the The Ohio State University Nuclear Reactor Lab (OSU-NRL). glowing core

The OSU-NRL is used for a wide range of nuclear-related research endeavors, including evaluation of material elemental constituents using neutron activation analysis (NAA) and neutron depth profiling (NDP); evaluation of radiation damage to electronic components and other materials, such as optical fibers and optical fiber-based sensors; evaluation of neutron and gamma-ray radiation sensitive detector performance; isotope production; and biomedical experiments. The OSU-NRL staff provides a variety of instructional services ranging from general tours to group laboratory sessions, and facilitates research projects structured to student and faculty interests.

The OSU-NRL features The Ohio State University Research Reactor (OSURR), as well as a professional gamma-ray spectroscopy system and two gamma-ray irradiators. The OSURR is a pool‑type reactor, with multiple beam ports and dry tubes as irradiation facilities, that is utilized for a variety of instructional, research, and service activities. It is licensed to operate at thermal powers up to a maximum of 500 kilowatts, and at this maximum steady‑state power, the maximum thermal neutron flux in the central irradiation facility is approximately 1.4x1013 n/cm2/s. For current facility use rates, please email

The OSURR is not constrained by a fixed duty-cycle, allowing great flexibility in scheduling research and education, and performing demonstrations and laboratories that include power changes. Many laboratory classes include start-ups and shut-downs, allowing students to observe the associated reactor dynamics. The facility is made available by appointment on a first-come, first-served basis during regular business hours.

The OSU-NRL is centrally located within Ohio, making it very accessible to all institutions in the state. In addition, Columbus is home to an international airport, making the OSU-NRL very accessible to out-of-state users.

The OSU-NRL is looking to expand its education and outreach capabilities with the addition of a classroom for which we need to raise $300K. Please help us bring this about by donating to our classroom addition fund.