World Nuclear Association and NEA launch new partnership
The World Nuclear Association signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the NEA at a ceremony in London on 6 September 2019. Under the MoU, both organisations have agreed to share best practices and co‑operate to support the wider understanding of nuclear energy and its development, to enable more effective and efficient nuclear safety, to exchange on improved approaches to decommission deactivated facilities, to enhance the legal frameworks associated with various international nuclear activities such as transport, and to support the economic and efficient use of nuclear energy. Read more
2019 Nuclear Innovation Bootcamp
The NEA was very pleased to host a group of 28 competitively selected students and early career professionals in August at the 2019 Nuclear Innovation Bootcamp, which was organised in collaboration with the French Nuclear Energy Society (SFEN), the University of Wisconsin‑Madison and the Nuclear Innovation Alliance (NIA). The bootcamp aimed to provide the participants with essential skills and an in‑depth understanding of specific issues relating to nuclear innovation. The two‑week programme featured a number of speakers and mentors, including the NEA Director‑General William D. Magwood, IV, and CEA's Scientific Director Franck Carré, who discussed the current state and future prospects for nuclear energy. Through real‑world team projects, expert‑led sessions, and hands‑on activities, the bootcamp participants learned the basics on innovation, creativity and product development. They developed seven innovation ideas into full‑fledged project proposals, and today a panel of five judges selected the team and the idea that will be presented at the International Youth Nuclear Congress 2020. We congratulate the winning team Glacier Melt Mitigation Services. For more information about the bootcamp, please visit nuclearinnovationbootcamp.org.
Joshikai in Fukushima for Future Scientists
The latest NEA International Mentoring Workshop in Science, Engineering and Decommissioning, organised in co‑operation with the Nuclear Damage Compensation and Decommissioning Facilitation Corporation (NDF), took place on 2‑3 August 2019 in Fukushima, Japan. During his opening remarks, NEA Director‑General Magwood underlined that the NEA encourages its membership to explore ways of attracting, recruiting and retaining women in science and technology. "We recognise that the workshop is really about the future, and you are the future. Everyone in this room came here today to support your growth and confidence so that you can be a future scientist, engineer, or whatever you choose to be. You can do it! Have confidence in yourself, whatever your dreams," he said to the participating students.
The global response to address climate change is one of the key policy challenges of the 21st century. Many governments around the world have agreed that action should be taken to achieve large cuts in greenhouse gas emissions over the coming decades, to adapt to the impacts of climate change and to ensure the necessary financial and technical support for countries to implement the required changes. Several years after COP 21 and the Paris agreement, although nuclear energy remains one of the options in the global toolbox to address climate change, the path towards a low‑carbon energy future is still uncertain. To this end, the NEA and the IAEA are co‑organising the 2019 International Conference on Climate Change and the Role of Nuclear Power, scheduled to take place in Vienna from 7 to 11 October 2019. For more information on the conference and its programme, please visit www.iaea.org/atoms4climate.
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Preparing tomorrow's radiological protection leaders
The second session of the NEA International Radiological Protection School (IRPS) was held on 19‑23 August 2019 at the Centre for Radiation Protection Research (CRPR), Stockholm University, with the support of the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (SSM). Some 31 participants from 14 countries were welcomed by Yeonhee Hah, Head of the NEA Division of Radiological Protection and Human Aspects of Nuclear Safety; Nina Cromnier, Director General of the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (SSM); and Professor Ylva Engström, Vice Dean (prodekan) of Stockholm University Natural Sciences Faculty. The five day training featured lectures and dialogues by renowned radiological protection experts on the history of the development and implementation of the international system of radiological protection. Find out more about the IRPS at oe.cd/nea-irps.
New NEA Expert Group on the Dose Limit for the Lens of the Eye Kicks Off
Following a decision taken by the NEA Committee on Radiological Protection and Public Health (CRPPH) in March 2019 to establish an Expert Group on the Dose Limit for the Lens of the Eye (EGDLE), the group held its first meeting on 25‑26 July 2019. The meeting brought together ten experts representing ten member countries who discussed the practical implementation of the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP)'s revised equivalent dose limit for the lens of the eye for occupational exposures. During his opening remarks, NEA Deputy Director‑General Nobuhiro Muroya emphasised the importance of exchanging experiences on the evolution of occupational exposure regulation and practices in light of the new limit given by the ICRP. The group intends to identify successes and challenges in the approaches taken to address this substantial change, a decrease from 150 mSv per year to a threshold of 20 mSv per year averaged over five years (i.e. 100 mSv/5 y, with no single year exceeding 50 mSv).
Methodologies for the assessment of the post‑closure safety of deep geological repositories (DGR) for the disposal of radioactive waste often make use of lists of Features, Events and Processes (FEPs). These are reviewed and screened for relevance during the production of a safety case. Assembled through a long‑term international collaboration between radioactive waste management organisations worldwide, the NEA International FEP (IFEP) List is a comprehensive and structured list of generic FEPs, relevant to assessments of the post‑closure safety of any DGR. It is intended to support national programmes in the production of their safety cases through the provision of a comprehensive and internationally accepted list of factors that may need to be considered when assessing the safety of DGRs, thereby enhancing stakeholder confidence. The list is available for download, as well as through a new online FEP Database which also allows radioactive waste management organisations to store project‑specific FEP lists relating to their own individual concepts and programmes.
NEA International School of Nuclear Law wraps up another successful session
The 19th session of the NEA International School of Nuclear Law (ISNL) was held from 26 August to 6 September 2019 in Montpellier, France, bringing together a diverse group of graduate students and professionals from across the world to learn more about the legal framework and major issues affecting the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Organised by the NEA and the University of Montpellier, the ISNL is a unique educational programme that offers participants from the academic, private and governmental sectors an in‑depth look at international nuclear law, focusing on areas such as nuclear safety, environmental law, security, safeguards and nuclear liability. This year's session was attended by 60 participants from 33 countries, including numerous non‑NEA member countries, many of whom received support to attend the ISNL from the IAEA, which also provided several lecturers. The ISNL has attracted since 2001 more than 1000 participants from an increasingly diverse range of countries, many of whom are now experts in the nuclear law field.
The next session of the NEA International Nuclear Law Essentials (INLE) will take place in Paris, France, on 17‑21 February 2020. The five day INLE course is designed to provide participants with a practical and comprehensive understanding of the various interrelated legal issues relating to the safe and peaceful use of nuclear energy. This intensive course in international nuclear law addresses the needs and interests of lawyers working in either the public or the private sector, but will also be of interest to scientists, engineers, policymakers, managers and other professionals working in the nuclear field. For more information on the course, including the application, see oe.cd/INLE.
Multinational NEA Framework for In-pile Fuel and Material Testing (FIDES)
The workshop to prepare for the kick‑off of the Multinational NEA Framework for In‑pile Fuel and Material Testing (FIDES) was held 3‑5 September 2019 with over 70 participants representing 30 institutions from 15 member countries. Following the closure of the Halden Reactor and three preliminary NEA workshops that explored potential solutions, the participants agreed on the approach of the new NEA Framework. This will maintain testing capacities and ensure access to these capacities, following the same multi‑lateral approach that was successfully employed within the Halden Reactor Project over six decades. A draft Framework Agreement was reviewed and it was agreed to continue with an agreement that broadly followed the model of the Halden Reactor Project. Joint Experimental Project (JEEP) Agreements will progress in parallel to the Framework Agreement, which will be updated to accommodate participants’ feedback and circulated in early 2020.
Structural Materials for Innovative Nuclear Systems (SMINS-5)
The NEA held the 5th International Workshop on Structural Materials for innovative Nuclear Systems (SMINS‑5) on 8‑11 July 2019 in Kyoto, Japan. The workshop was co-organised by Kyoto University and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA), in co‑operation with the IAEA and the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA) through the Joint Programme on Nuclear Materials (JPNM). The purpose of this triennial workshop is to stimulate an exchange of scientific information on current and innovative materials research programmes for different advanced nuclear systems with a view to identifying and developing potential synergies. This year's event was attended by 105 participants from 19 countries, representing research organisations, universities and international organisations. The programme covered scientific issues of fundamental studies, oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS) steels, accident‑tolerant fuels, advanced processes and materials, and metal alloys for advanced systems, and included a panel discussion on "How to fast track innovative materials through to application". During the workshop, many discussions were held on qualification of new materials and innovation. Participants concluded that the qualification of innovative structural materials is a long‑term process and it might be useful to establish communication between the industry and regulatory bodies at an early stage. The importance of international collaboration, particularly in the current nuclear context, was also highlighted.
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