Joint Erasmus Mundus Master in SAfe and REliable Nuclear Applications (SARENA)

April 15, 2022

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Location (s):

  • Finland
  • France
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
Leppeenranta, Nantes, Ljubljana, Madrid


The proposed two year Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering, SARENA - SAfe and REliable Nuclear Applications aims to develop scientific, technical and management skills enabling engineers to work in all domains related to nuclear energy and applications with a strong international culture, thus allowing students from around the world to join the programme. It consists of an integrated and balanced programme, fully taught in English, covering a wide range of nuclear applications including nuclear power plant (NPP) design and operation and addresses the important issue of safe management of radioactive waste and installations dismantlement and decommissioning, which is a pre-requisite for sustainability.


Sustainable development of the humankind in the future will, among others, require access to sufficient, environmentally acceptable and affordable energy sources. The most important and complex challenges are to improve the security of energy supply, reduce greenhouse gases emission and provide low-cost energy supply to industries and citizens. Sustainable nuclear energy is an integral part of the European Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan) fighting against climate change and securing energy supply.

The nuclear technologies today exhibit unparalleled levels of safety and reliability. This has been made possible through considerable and long-term efforts of the excellently educated and trained employees with outstanding safety culture in the industry, competent regulatory authorities, research, higher education and technical support (TSO) communities worldwide.

Program description

The proposed SARENA master will account for 120 ECTS during 24 months (see Figure). This comprises an academic period that lasts for 3 semesters accounting for 30 ECTS each and an industrial or research project semester with a master thesis accounting for 30 ECTS.
The master proposes two different tracks:

  1. Radioactive Waste Management and Decommissioning  (RWMD)
  2. Nuclear Reactors Operation and Safety (NROS)

The programme including both tracks is designed with 3 complementary semesters with gradual learning:

  1. from broad basic nuclear sciences and engineering teaching in semester 1 (a common semester of both tracks) at IMT Atlantique - France in addition to a management module with contribution to project management, theory of organisations, organisational factors of safety and management of technology in the nuclear field, thus providing a comprehensive train taking into account both technical and management issues,
  2. pre-specialisation teaching in semester 2 either at UPM - Spain (Radiochemistry, Environmental Impact and Safety for track RWMD) or at LUT - Finland (Nuclear Reactors Thermal Hydraulics and Modelling for track NROS)
  3. to specialisation in semester 3: Radioactive Waste Management and Decommissioning at IMT Atlantique and Nuclear Reactors Operation and Safety at UL - Slovenia.

SARENA ends with a master thesis in semester 4 carried out either in a company or a research institution under the supervision of an Academic Tutor from the programme institution where the student is enrolled in and a Company Tutor/Laboratory Supervisor where the thesis takes place. The common denominator for all academic semesters is SAFETY regardless the specialisation. There is strong involvement of lecturers from the nuclear industry in the academic semesters. This helps the students to better understand industry’s needs and opportunities for master thesis work in accordance with their professional project and employment. The consortium was set up to provide the best education for nuclear sector at stake nowadays and in the future in Europe. Providing the best knowledge and competencies in each semester guarantees the education of highly skilled engineers and experts. Each institution will contribute with a semester constituting its core knowledge and competencies.



Opportunity is About:


Candidates should be from:

Description of Ideal Candidate:

The European joint Masters SARENA is offered to students who have the highest potential for graduate studies. To enter the programme, candidates must have either a Bachelor’s degree in Science or Engineering or a recognised equivalent diploma from an accredited institution (minimum 3 years full time study) in a scientific or technical discipline.

Admission to this Master's Programme is granted to persons holding an academic degree of at least 180 ECTS credits (bachelor’s degree or equivalent programme of at least 180 ECTS) in Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, Environmental sciences, etc. For the bachelor's degree, a minimum overall/average grade of B according to the ECTS grading system is necessary.


Admission into the SARENA programme is the responsibility of the SARENA Academic Steering Board, who will appoint an Admission Committee of representatives of the Consortium partners for that purpose. The Admission Committee reviews the applications and establishes the priority list for Erasmus Mundus Scholarships.
The admission criteria are the following:

  • Academic excellence (30%): Education background, Bachelor grades and ranking, Quality of the university of origin
  • Professional/academic experience, extra-curricular activities (20%): Professional experience in the SARENA field (e.g. energy/environment) in industry or in research, Professional experiences not related to the domain, social or extra-scholar activities
  • Professional objectives and career project (15%): Targeted jobs and career project presented in the motivation letter, Objectives of learning or acquisition of complementary skills thanks to the Master
  • Motivation for intercultural experience, interest in European countries and cultures (10%): Intercultural experience and international mobility, Particular interest for Europe or SARENA countries
  • Language skills (15%): English (high priority), Spanish, French, Finnish or Slovenian (second priority), other European language (small bonus)
  • Recommendation letters (10%): quality of the referees, quality of the letters, content well related to the SARENA Master


Deadline: April 15, 2022

Cost/funding for participants:

Fees and scholarships

The SARENA programme offers approx. 15 scholarships per intake (i.e., 2019-21, 2020-22, 2021-23, 2022-24) paid by the Erasmus Mundus program for students from Programme Countries and Partner Countries

  • Programme Countries: Member States of the European Union (EU) and Iceland, Liechtenstein, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Norway, Turkey
  • Partner Countries: all other countries

Furthermore, the programme offers 1 to 2 scholarships per intake for citizens of the following countries:  Afghanistan, Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Bhutan, Cambodia, DPR Korea, Egypt, Georgia, Indonesia, Israel, Jordan, Laos, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Palestine, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Syria, Thailand, Tunisia, Ukraine, and Vietnam.

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