Nuclear data are produced by dozens of organisations around the world and shared internationally for the safe operation of nuclear power reactors, waste and reprocessing facilities, and nuclear medicine applications. The NEA facilitates the international exchange of information on nuclear data evaluations, measurements, nuclear model calculations, validation and related topics via its Working Party on International Nuclear Data Evaluation Co-operation (WPEC).
The WPEC, its two expert groups and six active sub-groups held a series of virtual meetings from 10 to 14 May 2021 with over 160 participants to continue working on the development of the understanding of basic nuclear physics that underpins all nuclear technology. Meeting sessions covered a wide range of topics, including reviews of new experimental physics campaigns and technological advancements in nuclear data, as well as the launch of a new initiative on knowledge preservation for differential nuclear reaction measurements.
During the meeting, the working party made updates to the NEA High Priority Request List for Nuclear Data, which is a compilation of the most important nuclear data requirements needed by the nuclear energy community. Maintained by the WPEC, the list is provides a guide for those planning measurement, nuclear theory and evaluation programmes.
The working party also prepared a major update to the Specifications for the Generalised Nuclear Database Structure (GNDS). The GNDS was launched in 2020 to replace the de facto international nuclear data format ENDF-6 which was designed originally for 1960s era punch-card readers. The structure embraces modern computer programming paradigms, addresses more sophisticated user requirements and makes nuclear data more accessible.