• English
  • العربية
  • 中文
  • Français
  • Русский
  • Español

You are here

Young Researchers Discuss Innovative Nuclear Energy Systems at Joint ICTP–IAEA Workshop

,

Poster session during the 2018 Joint ICTP–IAEA Workshop on Physics and Technology of Innovative Nuclear Energy Systems, Trieste, Italy, 22 August 2018. (Photo: C. Batra/IAEA)

Coming from 20 IAEA Member States, 36 young researchers, nuclear engineers and students currently involved in nuclear reactor research gained basic understanding of different innovative nuclear energy systems at a recent workshop. They learned about state-of-the art reactor design concepts, nuclear fuel cycle options and technological features of different innovative reactors.

The Workshop on Physics and Technology of Innovative Nuclear Energy Systems was jointly organized by the IAEA and the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP). It was held from 20 to 24 August 2018 at the ICTP Campus in Trieste, Italy.

A nuclear energy system encompasses all nuclear activities and facilities from mining uranium through electricity generation to radioactive waste management and the permanent disposal of high level waste, as well as the related institutional framework, both legal and regulatory. It can include evolutionary, i.e. current generation reactors, and nuclear facilities with innovative designs, including small and modular reactors or fast reactors with a closed fuel cycle.

The course programme provided the participants with a theoretical foundation on the most important research and technology development areas of innovative nuclear energy systems and addressed modern physical models and simulation codes for the design and safety analysis of these systems. It also included a presentation and group activity on the IAEA’s INPRO (International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles) methodology, a comprehensive method to assess the sustainability of a nuclear energy system.

“As I work for a nuclear regulator, participating in this workshop has provided me with a good understanding of the perspective of developers and researchers and the challenges faced in reactor technology development,” said Mok Cher Fong, a Project Officer in the New Major Facilities Licensing Division of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. “I now have a better appreciation of the hard work and efforts behind the development of innovative designs.”

In two poster sessions, the participants presented their work on a wide range of topics, including innovative reactor designs, modelling and simulations, artificial neural networks and innovative fuels, with three ‘best posters’ selected by the lecturers.

Group activities included analysing innovative nuclear energy systems with the INPRO methodology, conducting basic neutronics calculations for fast and water cooled reactors and a simulation of the molten salt reactor.

“I’ve benefited a lot,” said workshop participant Houda El Yaakoubi from the Department of Physics at the Abdelmalek Essaadi University in Morocco, “for example by using a tool for nuclear calculations and learning about different nuclear fuel cycle options.”

The agenda of the five-day workshop included lectures and discussions on global scenarios for nuclear energy; innovative reactor concepts and fuel cycle options; reactor physics and thermal hydraulics of innovative nuclear energy systems; status of advanced primary components and development and qualification of structural materials, coolants, and fuels; passive safety systems and other safety technologies; safety analysis including severe accident scenarios; advanced reactor modelling and simulation; and the status of research and technology development in support of innovative reactor and fuel cycle technologies.

“The students’ strong background in nuclear engineering and their enthusiasm were encouraging,” said Konstantin Mikityuk from Switzerland’s Paul Scherrer Institute, one of eight workshop lecturers. “I was glad to see that almost half of the participants were women.”

As I work for a nuclear regulator, participating in this workshop has provided me with a good understanding of the perspective of developers and researchers and the challenges faced in reactor technology development.
Mok Cher Fong, Project Officer, New Major Facilities Licensing Division, Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission

Resources

  1. Employment
  2. Women
  3. Press

Stay in touch

Newsletter