The Multinational Design Evaluation Programme (MDEP) has been for some time developing innovative approaches to leverage the resources and knowledge of national regulatory authorities that are currently or will be tasked with the review of new nuclear power reactor designs.
In this context, the MDEP VVER Working Group (VVERWG) held a joint workshop with Atomstroyexport JSC entitled "Construction of New VVERs in VVERWG Member-Countries" to focus on the safety reviews of Rosatom's VVER reactors. Held virtually on 27-29 October 2021, the workshop attracted 60 representatives from design and vendor organisations, regulatory bodies and their technical support organisations, as well as from operators in VVERWG member-countries – China, Finland, Hungary, Turkey and Russia.
The objective of the workshop was to review and discuss experience on the construction of new VVERs across the world. The workshop programme included sessions on probabilistic safety assessment (PSA) in nuclear power plant design, supply chain management and regulatory validation and verification of first-of-a-kind reactor equipment.
As such, the workshop provided a multinational platform to explore the differences and similarities between VVER projects in different countries, as well as to enhance the dialogue between regulatory bodies and the industry with a view to support national licensing processes. The discussions provided the MDEP with new insights and directions for its future programme of work -- particularly with respect to VVERWG activities.