Athough the fabrication of mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel is well-established with appropriate safety margins, it would still be beneficial to optimise the process by further investigating and possibly reducing these margins. It is also important to demonstrate that all operations involving plutonium and MOX fuels adhere to strict safety standards, and that these standards are based upon the most reliable tools and data.
An NEA workshop, organised in April 2004, confirmed that even though existing unpublished experiments could partially address the need for more accurate experimental data, the need for additional experiments remained. An ad hoc expert group was therefore established to define a framework and method for the selection and performance of new experimental programme(s) of interest. The present publication describes the selection criteria and methodology that were used to compare experimental proposals and makes recommendations on which experimental programme(s) should be pursued.