Joint Research Centre - European Commission

The European Commission's in-house science service
European Commission

Nuclear safety research at JRC

Research activities for nuclear safety include both the safety of the reactors and the safety of the nuclear fuel itself.

On the one hand, research is addressing the long-term safe operation of both Western and Russian type of nuclear power plants. To this end, advanced and refined safety assessment methodologies and corresponding analytical tools have to be extended and validated. Targeted experimental investigations will enable the validation and verification of the safety assessment tools and to improve the understanding of the underlying physical phenomena and processes. The JRC is fully involved in international efforts for advanced nuclear reactor safety.

hot cell laboratory at ITU

Fuel safety research: hot cell laboratory at ITU

On the other hand, activities with regard to the safety of nuclear fuel concentrate on prevention and mitigation of the consequences of hypothetical accidents. The two main aspects in this research are: mechanical integrity of the fuel assemblies during reactor lifetime, and fuel response to transient conditions and to severe reactor accident conditions.

The studies have also to reflect on the new reactor strategies presently considered worldwide, such as the Generation IV International Forum, inspired by a comprehensive assessment including public concerns, such as improved safety, reduced wastes and improved resistance to proliferation.

JRC's activities in the nuclear safety area are organised in three sub agendas:

  • Safety of nuclear installations
  • Nuclear fuel safety in power reactors operating in the EU
  • Safe operation of advanced nuclear energy systems


Details on scientific actions in this area:

  • MATerials performance assessmenT for INnOvative reactor systems Read more
  • Nuclear Safety Clearinghouse Read more
  • Feasibility Assessment of Next Generation nuclear energy Systems Read more
  • Current Nuclear Reactors- Operation Safety Read more
  • Knowledge Management, Training and Education in Reactor Design and Operation Read more
  • Safety of Conventional Nuclear Fuels Read more
  • Safety of Advanced Nuclear Fuels Read more