Module code: PHYM041

Module Overview

The module will combine taught sessions and computational/laboratory work, and consists of two parts:


Part 1: FLUKA. Introduction to LINUX system. Monte Carlo simulation of radiation interactions in matter: an introduction to the use of FLUKA simulation software.


Part 2: Project work: Students are allocated are working on groups of 3 to 6 students on an experimental or a literature review based project. Students preferences for the project type are taken into account during the allocation process but cannot be guaranteed. The laboratory-based group project typically involves the design and implementation of a radiation physics based investigation, for example setting up detection system based on either a scintillator or semiconductor detector in conjunction with digital and/or analog pulse processing, or designing and implementing and experimental schedule based on radiation physics based methods to carry out an investigation. Students that undertake a library based group literature survey project will investigate a challenging topic at the forefront of medical physics research and are expected to evaluate the most promising routes to overcome these challenges.(2 hours): Oral presentations (in Week 11)


Module provider


Module Leader

SHENTON-TAYLOR Caroline (Physics)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 119

Lecture Hours: 10

Tutorial Hours: 2

Laboratory Hours: 19

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

This module is taught in two parts:

 Part 1 (10 hours – Dr Seb Galer):


FLUKA Monte Carlo programming:

  • Introduction to LINUX based operating system.

  • Introduction to Monte Carlo techniques in radiation physics

  • Use of FLUKA to carry out a simple detector modelling problem


 Part 2: (21 hours – Dr Caroline Shenton-Taylor, Prof Paul Sellin, Prof Zsolt Podolyak, Prof Giuseppe Schettino)


Design Project

  • Students will work together in small groups to design a radiation detection based experimental investigation or undertake a library-based literature survey project.


Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Oral exam or presentation GROUP PROJECT ORAL PRESENTATION 20

Alternative Assessment

Alternative Assessment: If a student is unable to complete the FLUKA UoA they are required to complete the FLUKA assessments during the late summer assessment period. If a student is unable to participate in the Group Project Report or the Group Presentation the following Alternative Assessments are required:

  • Group Project Report: Students who are unable to complete the Group Project Report UoA, will have to carry out a shorter adjusted project during the late summer assessment period by producing a written report (50 %), about 1500 words in length.
  • Group Project Oral Presentation: Students unable to complete the Oral Presentation UoA, will be required to deliver a fresh presentation (20%), 8 minutes plus questions during the late summer assessment period.  If the Group Project Report UoA was completed the Oral Presentation can report on that, if not the Oral Presentation will report on the Group Project Report also submitted in the late summer assessment period.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

  • Their understanding of the basic functioning of a Monte Carlo code for particle transport.

  • Their capability to define simple geometries and scenarios in a Monte Carlo code, to make the correct choices for correct and efficient running and to interpret the results.

  • For students undertaking a literature review project, their capability to carry out a bibliographic research, identifying and comparing relevant and recent sources.

  • For students undertaking an experimental project, their capability to define an experimental problem, carry out the relevant background research, design an experiment, and interpret the results.

  • For all students, their capability to work in a team, and to present their results in writing and orally.


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Part 1: Two assessments, each 15% weighing towards the overall module. The first comprises a short online class test (15 %), the second assignment consists of modeling a radiation detection/imaging scenario, complemented with a brief written justification of the modelling parameters chosen and their impact on the limitations of the results (max  4000 words) (15 %). Please note individual support to install the modeling software on students' private computers cannot be given; the software will be available in the faculty computing labs which can be accessed in order to carry out the work required for the coursework assignment

  • Part 2 The Group Project is divided into two components: a group project report (50% weighting) and a group presentation (20%). The group project report is typically submitted in week 12 and includes an appendix documenting the group meeting records (agendas and minutes). The group presentation typically takes place in week 11. Please note that within both the group project report and the oral presentation the assessed criteria includes provision to ensure a student has made a fair contribution to the project.

Formative assessment and feedback

Continuous verbal feedback will be given during the Monte Carlo classes and the group project work.


Module aims

  • Through laboratory-based lectures and hands-on computing laboratories, sessions, students will learn the basic use and implementation of the FLUKA Monte Carlo simulation software.
  • The module culminates in a group-based project where students develop a complete project of their choice within the limitations of available equipment and technical support.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Understand the basis of Monte Carlo simulation, and be able to design and write a FLUKA simulation programme. KCP
002 Perform a Design Project in a group, and present this work orally KCPT
003 Gain expertise in Monte Carlo modelling for radiation physics problems KCP
004 Gain experience in group work through the design project KCPT
005 Development of oral and communication skills in the presentation of project work PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

Laboratory based module with some computational laboratory-based teaching.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: PHYM041

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Physics MSc 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Medical Physics MSc 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Radiation and Environmental Protection MSc 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Nuclear Science and Applications MSc 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.