International Reactor Physics Experiment Evaluation (IRPhE) Project

The International Reactor Physics Experiment Evaluation (IRPhE) Project aims to provide the nuclear community with qualified benchmark data sets by collecting reactor physics experimental data from nuclear facilities, worldwide. More specifically the objectives of the expert group are as follows:

For those experiments where interest and priority is expressed by member countries or working parties and executive groups within the NEA provide guidance or co-ordination in:

The expert group will:

The Secretariat of the group is provided by the OECD/NEA Data Bank, who is in charge of the management of the material released to the project. The Technical Review is chaired and co-ordinated by J.B. Briggs from INL, USA.

Current activities

The group is currently:

The following type of measurements are included:

The benchmark specifications and experimental data are intended for use by nuclear reactor physicists and engineers to validate current and new calculational schemes including computer codes and nuclear data libraries, for assessing uncertainties, confidence bounds and safety margins, and to record measurement methods and techniques.

Eighth edition and availability

The eighth edition of the International Handbook of Evaluated Reactor Physics Benchmark Experiments was published in May 2013 (ISBN 978-92-64-99208-5) and contains reactor physics benchmark specifications that have been derived from experiments that were performed at various nuclear experimental facilities around the world. The benchmark specifications are intended for use by reactor physics personnel to validate calculational techniques. This Edition contains data from 131* different experimental series that were performed at 47 different reactor facilities. The total number of experimental series includes 65 ISCBEP benchmarks of reactor configurations, which were shared with the 2013 IRPhE handbook. 127 of the 131* evaluations are published as approved benchmarks. The remaining 4 evaluations are published as DRAFT documents only. Draft documents have been reviewed by the IRPhEP Technical Review Group (TRG); however, all action items could not be completed or reviewed in time for the final publication or, in most cases, the TRG felt it necessary to review the revised evaluations before giving final approval. The Handbook is organized in a manner that allows easy inclusion of additional evaluations, as they become available.

*this number differs from what is written in the back cover (130). 1 experiment was added between the printing of the cover and the publishing of the Handbook, increasing the final number of different experimental series for the 2013 version to 131.

The Handbook is published in electronic format (pdf files), where the experiments are grouped into evaluations, categorised by (1) Reactor Name, (2) Reactor Type, (3) Facility Type, and (4) Measurement Type. 

The Handbook was prepared by a working party comprised of experienced reactor physics personnel from Belgium, Brazil, Canada, P.R. of China, France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Slovenia, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.

The IRPhEP Handbook, featuring the IRPhEP Database and Analysis Tool (IDAT), is distributed on DVD and online. It can be requested by completing the request form.

The IRPhEP Handbook is available to authorised requesters from the OECD member countries and to contributing establishments from non-OECD countries. Other requests are handled on a case by case basis. Find out more about the restrictions, the disclaimer, and providing feedback



Much of the work so far realised by the International Reactor Physics Experiment Evaluation (IRPhE) Project, in particular, the evaluation and review of selected benchmark experiments, was possible thanks to substantial funding provided by the Government of Japan. Other countries, currently Belgium, Brazil, Canada, P.R. of China, France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the Russian Federation, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America have contributed evaluations, reviews and data at their own expense. Overall technical coordination of the IRPhEP is directly supported by the United States Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy with significant in-kind contributions from the parallel OECD NEA International Criticality Safety Benchmark Evaluation Project (ICSBEP), supported in the United States by the Department of Energy’s Office of Facility Management and ES&H Support.

Last reviewed: 28 February 2014

Next meeting
  • October 2014 (dates to be confirmed)