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New IAEA Essay Challenge: Innovations for Sustaining Uranium Exploration and Production


A worker conducting radiation protection monitoring at the Rössing Uranium Mine. (Photo: G. Schneider -Rössing Uranium Mine)

The IAEA is inviting students and early career professionals to present original essays about sustaining uranium exploration and production into the future. Expertise, innovation and modern technologies are needed to ensure a sustainable supply of uranium raw materials, to fuel both operating and future nuclear power reactors. The next generation of professionals will be instrumental in ensuring effective regulation, sound environmental management, training and education for sustained uranium mining and production.

The winners of the competition will be invited to present their essays at the IAEA International Symposium on Uranium Raw Material for the Nuclear Fuel Cycle (URAM-2023), to be held in Vienna, Austria, in May 2023.

The deadline for essay submission is 15 January 2023 and two winners will be announced in March 2023.

“A new generation of experts is essential to the future of uranium exploration and production,” said Brett Moldovan, Lead of the IAEA Uranium Production Cycle Team. “They play a critical role in developing innovations and continually improving the industry, and in contributing to public acceptance of uranium mining and processing in the context of the broader global nuclear industry.”

Professionals and students under 35 are asked to write on one, or more, of four of the essay topics. The essay topics include: key considerations for the future of the uranium production cycle in nuclear power generation, building trust and acceptance of uranium exploration and production, the role of innovation in minimizing the impacts of uranium mining and production, and strategies to support the development of the next generation of uranium raw materials professionals.

The event provides a unique global forum for all those working in the field of uranium raw materials to come together and discuss the most current topics and innovations. All essay applicants will also be considered for contributions to other segments of the Symposium programme.

For more details about the competition please click here. For more information about the Symposium, please visit URAM‑23 web page.

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