Courses & Units

Atomic and Nuclear Physics KYA323

Students majoring in Physics must take at least one of KYA322 and KYA323.

This unit is offered in even numbered years only.


The objective of the atomic physics part of this course is to provide a comprehensive introduction to atomic structure allowing you to understand atomic spectra, the behaviour of angular momentum in quantum mechanical systems, and many-electron atoms. The nuclear and particle physics will develop your understanding of the period table of elements, nuclear mass formulae, models for nuclei and their transformations. In particle physics you will learn the standard model and the classification of particles. In the nuclear astrophysics you will learn the origin of the elements from the big-bang to nucleosynthesis in stars. In all areas you will be expected to use the mathematical framework by which quantitative problems in these areas can be solved. There is both a theory and a practical (laboratory) component to this course. Applications of physical principles in daily life and technology are kept in mind at all appropriate points in the course. Students are encouraged to develop their conceptual thinking ability, and to practice approximating real situations by simpler physical/mathematical models.


Unit name Atomic and Nuclear Physics
Unit code KYA323
Credit points 12.5
College/School College of Sciences and Engineering
School of Natural Sciences
Discipline Physics
Coordinator Doctor Ross Turner
Available as an elective? Yes
Delivered By University of Tasmania
Level Advanced


Location Study period Attendance options Available to
Hobart Semester 2 On-Campus International Domestic


International students
Domestic students

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Units are offered in attending mode unless otherwise indicated (that is attendance is required at the campus identified). A unit identified as offered by distance, that is there is no requirement for attendance, is identified with a nominal enrolment campus. A unit offered to both attending students and by distance from the same campus is identified as having both modes of study.

Key Dates

Study Period Start date Census date WW date End date
Semester 2 22/7/2024 16/8/2024 9/9/2024 27/10/2024

* The Final WW Date is the final date from which you can withdraw from the unit without academic penalty, however you will still incur a financial liability (refer to How do I withdraw from a unit? for more information).

Unit census dates currently displaying for 2024 are indicative and subject to change. Finalised census dates for 2024 will be available from the 1st October 2023. Note census date cutoff is 11.59pm AEST (AEDT during October to March).

About Census Dates

Learning Outcomes

  • Apply physical principles in a broad range of contexts and understand the underlying assumptions and limitations of physical theories to solve problems in atomic, nuclear, and particle physics.
  • Analyse evidence for and against different theories of atomic, nuclear, and particle physics, and from this formulate and evaluate further tests.
  • Manage and use relevant information from a range of sources, and communicate scientific knowledge in atomic, nuclear, and particle physics orally, graphically, and numerically.
  • Work both cooperatively and independently, and understand that applications of physics may have important social & ethical implications.

Fee Information

Field of Education Commencing Student Contribution 1,3 Grandfathered Student Contribution 1,3 Approved Pathway Course Student Contribution 2,3 Domestic Full Fee 4
010301 $1,118.00 $1,118.00 not applicable $2,978.00

1 Please refer to more information on student contribution amounts.
2 Please refer to more information on eligibility and Approved Pathway courses.
3 Please refer to more information on eligibility for HECS-HELP.
4 Please refer to more information on eligibility for FEE-HELP.

If you have any questions in relation to the fees, please contact UConnect or more information is available on StudyAssist.

Please note: international students should refer to What is an indicative Fee? to get an indicative course cost.



KYA211 Waves and Kinetic Theory AND KYA212 Electromagnetism and Thermodynamics AND KMA252 Calculus and Applications 2


Teaching Pattern

3x 50min/week face to face guided workshops/seminars, 1x 50min/week tutorial (weeks 2-12), ~20 lab hrs total

AssessmentMid-term Test (15%)|Weekly Problem Sets (20%)|Laboratory (25%)|Examination (40%)
TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable



Required readings will be listed in the unit outline prior to the start of classes.

LinksBooktopia textbook finder

The University reserves the right to amend or remove courses and unit availabilities, as appropriate.