JRC scientist to head IAEA Marine Environmental Laboratory
Maria Betti has been appointed as the new Director of the Marine Environmental Laboratory of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA-MEL) as from 1 August 2008.
Born in Pisa, Italy, Maria Betti carried out research for many years at the JRC Institute for Transuranium Elements (ITU), leading the analytical chemistry and the environmental radioactivity groups. She contributed to the development of techniques for the analysis of radionuclides in bulk and particles from environmental materials. For more than 15 years she has implemented advanced techniques for the Euratom and IAEA Environmental Sampling programs. She has also been contributing to monitor and measure discharges, emissions and trace radionuclide concentrations in soil, vegetation, water and air under strict quality assurance principles, as support to the OSPAR (Oslo-Paris convention) strategies with regard to radioactive substances. Prof. Betti is author of more than 100 scientific articles, mainly published about analytical chemistry, nuclear technology and environmental science and technology.
The IAEA Marine Environment Laboratory (IAEA-MEL) was established in Monaco in 1961 as part of the IAEA's Department of Research and Isotopes, and is the only marine laboratory within the UN organisation. Its unique nature means that, besides carrying out an IAEA-focused core programme, IAEA-MEL is designed to respond to regular requests for technical assistance from other UN agencies and programmes, e.g. UNEP, IOC (UNESCO), FAO, WHO and WMO. Nevertheless, the promotion of nuclear and isotopic techniques and the improved understanding of marine radioactivity continue to be central to the Laboratory's work.