IAEA International Knowledge Base
on Nuclear Graphite


The aim of this knowledge base is to support the preservation and sharing of expert knowledge and experience, across the international Graphite Community.

The knowledge base contains two levels of knowledge:

  • General information on the subject of Nuclear Graphite

  • Specialist knowledge, secured for members of the international project


In September 1995, the IAEA Specialists Meeting on Graphite Moderator Lifecycle Technologies (IAEA-TECDOC-901) was held at the University of Bath, United Kingdom. A recurring observation made by the delegates at the meeting was the noticeable reduction in the number of graphite experts remaining in the nuclear power industry. Since the beginning of civil nuclear power, graphite moderated power reactors have provided a significant contribution to the generation of electricity and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future. Yet, many of the renowned experts in the field of nuclear graphites are approaching retirement without apparent replacement. This, coupled with changes in the focus on nuclear power by some industrialised countries, prompted the IAEA to initiate an evaluation on the feasibility and interest by Member States of establishing a central archive facility for the storage of data on irradiated graphites.

The UK Health and Safety Executive (H&SE) initially sponsored this project at Bath University, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, UK to allow an archive of these data to be developed and maintained. The IAEA held two Consultancy Meetings (January 1998 and February 1999) to discuss the formal establishment and administration of an international database at the IAEA, following completion of the project at Bath University. The database was transferred to the IAEA in June 1999, and the initial Database Members are the United Kingdom, Japan, United States, and the Forschungszentrum Juelich of Germany. Participation is actively sought from other IAEA Member States and nuclear power utilities within Member States.

Purpose and Objectives of the Graphite Database

The purpose of the Graphite Database is to preserve and further expand the existing scientific information on the physical, chemical, mechanical and other properties of irradiated graphites (including zero dose) relevant for nuclear power, nuclear safety and other nuclear science and technology applications, and to create a comprehensive international source for such information, including reference data.

The Graphite Database is intended to:

  • facilitate the development of national and international programmes on graphite moderated reactors and fusion technologies

  • assist the safety authorities in the assessment of safety aspects of graphite moderated reactors, including the safety aspects of reactor decommissioning

  • serve as a comprehensive source of scientific information for a broad range of material science applications, including the non-nuclear technology areas