Nuclear Security for Research Reactors and Associated Facilities

Closed for proposals

Project Type

Coordinated Research Project

Project Code

J02006

CRP

2099

Approved Date

28/01/2014

Status

3 - Active - Ongoing

Start Date

09/12/2015

Expected End Date

08/12/2020

Participating Countries

Ghana
Greece
Jamaica
Malaysia
Pakistan
Syrian Arab Republic
United States of America

Description

The objective of this CRP is to simplify the process for establishing, and enhance the effectiveness of, nuclear security programmes to reduce the risk of theft of nuclear and/or other radioactive materials and sabotage at research reactors and associated facilities (RRAFs).
Research reactors, because of their diverse objectives, settings, funding arrangements and staffing, present a particular set of challenges to the implementation and maintenance of an effective nuclear security programme. As it is critical to ensure a robust security programme, the IAEA and its Member States have recognized the importance of enhancing security at RRAFs.
This CRP includes the following activities: (1) Reviewing the assessment methodologies for regulated facilities developed by the CRP on nuclear security assessment methodology (launched in 2013) in relation to RRAFs and developing case studies for RRAFs; (2) Identifying factors for developing a comprehensive normalized ranking scheme for security risk posed by nuclear and radioactive materials while considering the unique characteristics of RRAFs; (3) Identifying and assessing open source data to develop a general threat basis statement for RRAFs; (4) Identifying and assessing available computer-based analytical tools that are suitable to be used by non-security experts to evaluate dispersal consequences arising from the introduction of external energy; and (5) Identifying and assessing available databases for evaluating the performance effectiveness of nuclear security of RRAFs.
The outputs of the CRP will include: case studies and methodologies to normalize attractiveness risk factors; threat basis statements; methodologies and analytical tools to evaluate dispersal consequences; and a database to support the evaluation of effectiveness that can be used in enhancing nuclear security systems. This CRP is the first IAEA research activity specifically devoted to nuclear security for RRAFs. It will create an environment for sharing and transferring knowledge and experience, and provide guidance and specific examples of good practices in enhancing nuclear security at RRAFs.

Objectives

To simplify the process for and enhance the effectiveness of Nuclear Security Systems to reduce risk at research reactor and associated facilities.

Specific objectives

Activity: Identify factors for developing a comprehensive normalised ranking scheme for security risk posed by nuclear and radioactive materials while considering the unique characteristics of RRAFs. Specific objective: To identify factors for developing a methodology to normalise attractiveness factors. (Note: Attractiveness addresses the ease of access and simplicity of scenario to initiate an unacceptable consequence. It does not consider the material form, nor the nuclear security system protecting the material.)This methodology should consider the complexity and diversity of RRAFs, including safety, while addressing sabotage of the reactor and other processes that could lead to unacceptable radiological consequences, and the theft of both radioactive and nuclear materials. These complexities include the relative attractiveness of the materials for theft (ease of handling and removal) and the attractiveness of the processes for sabotage.

Activity: Identify and assess available computer-based analytical tools technical suitability, to evaluate dispersal consequences due to the introduction of external energy to be used by non-security experts. Specific objective: Use these tools to evaluate sabotage scenarios at RRAFs. Develop computer-based analytical tools if suitable tools are not found.

Activity: Identify and assess available databases for evaluating the performance effectiveness of nuclear security of RRAFs. Specific objective: To provide these tools to assist non-security experts to perform effectiveness evaluations of nuclear security system/s at RRAFs, e.g., vulnerability analysis of detection and protection devices, equipment, systems, structures, components. Develop computer-based analytical tools if suitable tools are not found.

Activity: Review the assessment methodologies for regulated facilities (Simple and Complex) developed by the NUSAM CRP in relation to RRAFs. Specific objective: To determine which methodology to apply, Simple, Complex or both, for RRAFs ensuring alignment between the NUSAM and RRAF CRPs and to develop “case study/ies” for RRAFs.

Activity: Identify and assess open source data to develop a general threat basis statement for RRAFs. Specific objective: Use the open source data to develop a general threat basis statement for IAEA Member States to develop their own specific threat statements.

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