Internship- Upgrade of the Python package lbh15 with the integration of liquid-metal thermochemical properties




Years of experience

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newcleo is a clean and safe nuclear technology company. Privately funded and headquartered in London, UK, newcleo was launched in 2021 to be a disruptor in the field of nuclear energy. Its mission is to generate safe, clean, economic and inexhaustible energy for the world, through a radically innovative combination of existing, accessible technologies.

newcleo is building the next generation system with the goals to:

  1. eliminate the need for geological repositories by using a fast neutron flux avoiding the production of long life radioactive elements;
  2. accelerate the development of new fuel cycles, including MOX (Mixed Pu-U Oxides) and eventually thorium, that provide clean, safe and inexhaustible energy from nuclei and the opportunity to burn the long-lived nuclear waste produced by the old generation of nuclear reactors;
  3. ultimately develop an Accelerator Driven System (ADS), based on the intrinsically safe coupling of a particle accelerator and a sub-critical reactor.

With visionary co-founders, newcleo brings together an international team of senior engineers with deep knowledge of nuclear energy and new recruits with a fresh mindset, working to develop designs based on innovative Lead-cooled Fast Reactors (LFRs). These LFRs will meet the commercial demand for small terrestrial waste-to-energy reactors.

In the UK, newcleo’s immediate focus is on delivering a prototype 30MWe LFR by 2030 followed by an initial battery of 4-6 x 200MWe reactors with deployment in the early 2030s. We are building our team to meet this challenging and exciting objective.

newcleo wants to be the first step toward the evolution of its industry to become fully respectful of people and the environment. To develop a new, sustainable, and completely safe way of generating nuclear energy that will lead humanity to zero emissions, and to the mitigation of global warming.

Reports to (Job Title):

R&D Manager – Codes & Methods

Job Description:

To collaborate to newcleo’s activities on lead chemical control that are the objects of intensive studies, both in terms of experiments and theoretical modeling.
In order to support both types of activities, the Python package lbh15 is under active development to offer an unique and standardized entry point for the use
of empirical correlations of physical properties. lbh15 (Lead Bismuth Handbook 2015) is a Python package developed by newcleo based on the reference handbook edited by OECD-NEA [1], as contribution to the expert group on heavy liquid metal technologies. The first version of lbh15 was released on September 21 2022,implementing a first batch of thermal properties of molten lead (Pb), bismuth (Bi) and of their eutectic alloy (LBE).
The properties are implemented as analytical functions from empirical correlations. The package contains also elementary services for function characterization that use the standard Python packages for scientific computation, namely NumPy and SciPy.

Main Activities:

During this internship, the student will develop new features in lbh15, specifically:
a) solubility and diffusivity of metallic elements in Pb, Bi, LBE;
b) solubility of oxygen, its diffusivity and interaction with Pb, Bi, LBE;
c) interaction of water with Pb, Bi, LBE;
d) chemistry control and monitoring system.

The student will develop/ consolidate skills in the following aspects of software engineering with Python:
• Object-Oriented programming based on SOLID principles;
• Python Dynamic programming;
• Design patterns (template and factory patterns in particular);
• CI/CD pipelines (including regression tests);
• Write well-documented code for scientific applications.

The student will be followed by the engineering team of newcleo that is developing lbh15, together with an engineer from the safety team to identify the main correlations that the package shall provide.

Key Performance Indicators

Timely management of key deliverables and tasks respecting deadlines with high quality output.

Ideal Background


Master student in Nuclear, Chemical or Software Engineering; Applied Physics; Chemistry; Computer science.


Fluent Italian and English

Experience / Professional requirements

• Fundamentals in thermodynamics and chemistry
• Basic knowledge of software programming (previous experience in Python appreciated
but not fundamental)
• Basic knowledge of Linux operative system
Nice to have: experience using git, basic knowledge on liquid metal-cooled fast reactors.

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