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Technical Meeting on the Safety Implications of the Use of Artificial Intelligence in Nuclear Power Plants

16 – 20 Oct 2023
Vienna, Austria
Event code: EVT2103061


Artificial intelligence (AI) applications have been widely implemented across various industries. Those applications have demonstrated the potential of AI techniques to deal with difficult tasks such as for pattern recognition, data analysis, uncertainties in the decision-making process, problem solving and optimization of complex procedures. For the nuclear industry, and particularly for nuclear power plants (NPPs), AI applications have been introduced with potential benefits in areas and activities related to safety such as systems’ design, plant operation, inspections and maintenance, as well as nuclear safety and risk analysis.

While the use of AI applications in NPPs offers potential benefits, it also presents safety challenges that must be carefully addressed to assess the safety implications for ensuring the robustness of the NPP design and its safe operation. For instance, due to the complex algorithms used and the extensive amount of data involved in the analyses, the reliability of AI applications cannot be evaluated through traditional software verification and validation methods alone. Moreover, since AI applications are based on mathematical models instead of physical models, the use of AI applications for NPP design optimization, autonomous operation and control, and safety analysis needs to be carefully substantiated.

Furthermore, AI applications can provide advanced functions that were not previously used in NPPs. For example, AI applications could provide autonomous control to mitigate abnormal status of NPPs, or they could provide additional messages which include diagnosis results or instructions for manual control to support operation and maintenance. It is challenging to demonstrate that the failure of an AI-based application would not interfere with safety functions due to the various and complex effects of AI application functions which need to be analysed. Therefore, it is necessary to accrue more experience in the safety evaluation of AI applications.

Recognizing the importance of addressing these issues, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is organizing a Technical Meeting on the Safety Implications of the Use of Artificial Intelligence in Nuclear Power Plants. The meeting will bring together experts and stakeholders from the nuclear industry, regulatory bodies, and academia to discuss the use of AI in NPPs and its potential impact on safety. This Technical Meeting will be the first key activity within the IAEA project of the same title, i.e., “Safety Implications of the Use of Artificial Intelligence in Nuclear Power Plants", the results of which are expected to help Member States when preparing safety evaluation frameworks for AI applications at NPPs.


The objective of the event is to provide a platform for Member States to exchange information on the state-of-the art knowledge and experience on the development and application of AI applications for NPPs with specific focus on safety considerations, including opportunities for safety improvements, as well as safety challenges, including those related to licensing.

Within the project on “Safety Implications of the Use of Artificial Intelligence in Nuclear Power Plants", IAEA intends to develop a new publication (TECDOC) which will capture the outcomes of the meeting. The overall scope of the project and the scope and contents of the TECDOC will also be discussed during the meeting.

Target Audience

Participation is solicited from professionals from NPP design organizations, operating organizations, nuclear regulatory authorities, technical support organizations and research institutions, as well as from international organizations, engaged in activities related to NPP safety and regulation. To ensure maximum effectiveness in the exchange of information, participants should be actively involved in the subject of the event.

The event is open to representatives of all Member States with an active nuclear power programme, including those from embarking countries in Phase 3 of their nuclear power programme


The event will address recent experiences in Member States in specific areas related to AI applications for NPPs, with focus on safety considerations. Topics to be covered will include, but not be limited to:

1. Safety implications of AI applications for NPPs related to:

  • Potential interference with, or impact on, the performance of the safety functions;
  • Autonomous operation and control system;
  • Support to the operator in decision making for normal operation and accident conditions;
  • Safety assessment approaches, including deterministic safety analysis and probabilistic safety assessments;
  • Independence between safety components and AI applications;
  • Software verification and validation;
  • Human factors engineering considering the interfaces between human and AI application

2. Considerations related to the regulatory framework for AI applications:

  • Identification of gaps in the current regulatory framework for AI applications in the nuclear industry

3.  Safety benefits of using and applying AI applications to NPPs:

  • Identification of safety benefits of AI applications which may not be achievable with traditional technology


The event will be held at the Vienna International Centre (VIC), where the IAEA’s Headquarters are located. Participants must make their own travel and accommodation arrangements.

Key Deadlines

31 July 2023: Submission of abstracts via email to Scientific Secretary.

31 July 2023: Deadline for submission of the Participation Form (Form A) and if applicable the Grant Application Form (Form C), to the competent national authority (e.g., Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Permanent Mission to the IAEA or National Atomic Energy Authority) or their organization for onward transmission to the IAEA

31 August 2023: Notification of acceptance of abstracts for oral presentations

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