Reactors and accelerators


Research reactors


Research reactors have the primary purpose of providing a source of neutrons - subatomic particles produced when uranium atoms split - for a wide range of applications, including the investigation of materials, the irradiation of silicon for industrial uses, and for the production of radioisotopes used in nuclear medicine. Find out more about Research reactors.


Nuclear power reactors

There are no nuclear power reactors in Australia. Nuclear power reactors use heat from nuclear fission to make steam, which then drives turbines to generate electricity. Nuclear power now supplies a significant amount of the world's energy needs. Find out more about Nuclear power reactors. 

Particle accelerators

Particle accelerators are instruments that accelerate electrically charged particles to extremely high speeds in order to induce high energy reactions or produce high energy radiation. Accelerator science is at the forefront of modern science both in Australia and around the world. Find out more about Particle accelerators.



Cyclotrons are particle accelerators that accelerate particles in a circular path. They complement nuclear reactors in the production of radioisotopes for medical use. Find out more about Cyclotrons.