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INPRO Dialogue Forum: Partnerships for Nuclear Power Development and Deployment


The IAEA’s International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles (INPRO) supports long-term planning and collaboration on innovations in reactors, fuel cycles and institutional approaches that will promote the sustainable development of nuclear energy. Shown here is the BN-800 commercial fast reactor at the Beloyarsk Nuclear Power Plant in Russia. (Photo: Rosenergoatom)

International collaboration and partnerships are vital to developing and deploying nuclear power and the IAEA is the natural place for this collaboration to take place, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Nuclear Energy Mikhail Chudakov said at the 18th Dialogue Forum, organized by the International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles (INPRO).

Experts from 33 countries and four international organizations, including the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Nuclear Energy Agency, the International Framework for Nuclear Energy Cooperation (IFNEC), the Generation IV International Forum, and the Brazilian-Argentine Agency for Accounting and Control of Nuclear Materials, discussed how increased cooperation and partnerships could help countries to address challenges associated with nuclear power development and deployment.

The IAEA’s INPRO supports long-term planning and collaboration on innovations in reactors, fuel cycles and institutional approaches that will promote the sustainable development of nuclear energy. Since 2010, the Dialogue Forums have addressed key issues on sustainable development of nuclear power systems and the related complex relationships of technology suppliers, technology users and other stakeholders.

In his video address, Chudakov said the IAEA plays an important role by supporting countries with established nuclear power programmes as well as so-called nuclear newcomers by bringing together nuclear technology developers, suppliers and customers to jointly consider international and national actions.

“INPRO has a key role in facilitating partnerships and innovating for a future focused on the sustainability of nuclear energy systems,” Chudakov said at the event. “The Dialogue Forum offers a platform where technology holders can better understand the needs and concerns of technology users, and users can better understand the possibilities and limitations associated with the development and deployment of innovative nuclear energy systems.”

Participants in the Dialogue Forum noted that synergies in supporting national research and development (R&D) programmes, technical cooperation aimed at enhanced fuel cycle operations and waste management, and joint use of tools for economic assessment of electricity generation technologies will help to ensure that nuclear power remains a viable option in future clean energy systems.

The activities of INPRO, whose membership includes 41 countries and the European Commission, cover energy scenarios, innovations, sustainability assessment and strategies. INPRO’s scientific and technical analysis tools can be used for scenario modelling, decision analysis and road-mapping to investigate enhanced nuclear energy sustainability.

Effective cooperation among countries on R&D and fuel cycle operations, for example, can reduce the technology development and infrastructure needs of newcomer countries, including those with smaller nuclear energy programmes. Multilateral cooperation on the back end of the fuel cycle could mobilize more resources and reduce the time and costs involved in developing fuel cycle infrastructure, including geological repositories, participants agreed.

Whether for uranium enrichment, spent fuel reprocessing, or spent fuel disposal and storage, multilateral options could include co-ownership of facilities or assurances of services and supply. With such cooperation and partnerships, newcomer countries could receive necessary assistance including information, knowledge, financing, human resource development, nuclear infrastructure development, and a feasible technical solution for managing and disposing of spent fuel and high-level waste.

Participants recognized that increased collaboration could also provide benefits in economics, security of supply, and resource allocation. While taking related risks into account, international organizations, including the IAEA, can provide an overall umbrella for information exchange, cooperative research, databases, standards and guides and expert services.

“This Dialogue Forum is very timely,” said Vladimir Artisyuk, Chairperson of the Dialogue Forum and Adviser to the Director General of the Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation. “Increased partnerships and cooperation will be important in ensuring that a stable global supply chain can enhance the sustainability of nuclear power.”   

Last update: 04 Jun 2021

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