Member States were briefed yesterday on an IAEA project that helps nations chart their way forward in choosing innovative technologies when developing sustainable nuclear energy.
The International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles (INPRO) brings together technology holders and users so that they can consider jointly the international and national actions required to achieve the desired innovation in nuclear reactors and fuel cycles.
Yury Sokolov, IAEA Deputy Director General of Nuclear Energy and INPRO Project Manager, opened the meeting by introducing the scope and goal of the project.
"INPRO is a partnership for dialogue and promoting innovation in a changing nuclear world, and one of the primary examples of successful international cooperation fostered by the IAEA," he said.
Randy Beatty, INPRO Group Leader, outlined the project's vision and action plan, and welcomed Member States to join the activities and programs of the Project.
"Affiliation to the IAEA and active contribution to the project are the only requirements for membership," he said.
Representatives from four member states participating in INPRO then spoke of their countries' experiences in the project.
Srikumar Banerjee, Director of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), described how India contributed to the development and application of the INPRO methodology and provides leadership for several collaborative projects.
"The benefits arising from India's INPRO membership include the broadening of its perspective, and the possibility to exchange information with the international community," he noted.
Mr. Banerjee then went on to outline the country's project for an Advanced Heavy Water Reactor (AHWR) that would be ideally suited, he said, for the production of hydrogen, generation of electricity and desalinization.
David Tregunno, Director of External Relations at the Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd (AECL), spoke of the input INPRO gave to Canada's strategic developments in research and development.
Alexander Bychkov, Director of Russia's Research Institute of Atomic Reactors, counseled the nuclear sector to build fast reactors and close the fuel cycle from around the year 2020 to achieve a sustainable nuclear energy.
Finally, Hudi Hastowo, Chairman of Indonesia's National Nuclear Energy Agency, offered a non-nuclear power country's perspective on INPRO.
"Thanks to INPRO, Indonesia has established national guidance for the application and development of sustainable nuclear energy system in the country," he said.
The The International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles, or INPRO, was established in 2001 in response to a resolution by the IAEA General Conference to help to ensure that nuclear energy is available to contribute, in a sustainable manner, to meeting the energy needs of the 21st century.
Currently, 31 countries are members of INPRO. The programme is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions of its Member States.