These activities include innovative concepts for future high-temperature nuclear reactors, other innovative reactor concepts, and other applications for nuclear power such as hydrogen production. Also included in this area are specific calls for education and training and infrastructure requirements. This includes concepts such as the establishment of new courses, harmonisation of relevant curricula, and the safety of existing nuclear installations, including plant-life management, providing a basis for the longer operation of existing plants, severe accident management, and decommissioning activities.
Education and training activities
The preservation and enhancement of a skills base for nuclear engineering and science in Europe is a fundamental prerequisite for progress in nuclear science, technology and radiation protection. It is vitally important that a sufficient number of today’s students learn the skills needed to maintain innovation and technical excellence and to ensure that the exemplary public safety record of the European nuclear industry continues in the future.
Education and training is an important element of the European Research Area in this sector. By promoting exchange of high quality personnel between Member States and institutions, this activity spreads knowledge and best practice and helps build future research partnerships. It also allows scientists from all Member States to access the best equipment and facilities.
All integrated projects and networks of excellence should include education and training activities related to the specific work programmes.
More generally, education and training activities are the subject of a continuously open call with proposals evaluated every six months (May and October).
The funded projects described are:
- This Specific Targeted Research Project is exploring the particular advantages of hightemperature gas-cooled fast reactors as economic, sustainable electricity generators.
- A major Integrated Project that is addressing viability and performance issues of the Very High Temperature Reactor concept, one of the innovative systems being considered for the next generation of nuclear power plants, which (along with the gas-cooled fast reactor) has the potential for other applications such as hydrogen production.
Education and training
- Building on the experience in Belgium, this Specific Support Action will show how a European higher education area for the nuclear sector can be achieved, and how resources and capabilities can be integrated.
- A Coordination Action that will assess education and training needs relating to themanagement of geological disposal and will propose future provision required in this area.
- This Coordination Action is developing a common European radiation protection and safety culture by better integrating and harmonising national education and training efforts.
- This Coordination Action will address potential future skill-base deficits in radiation protection and related subjects at postgraduate level.
- This Coordination Action brings together all aspects of nuclear training at university level and will ensure that all nuclear education offered at this level in Europe is of high quality and harmonized.
- A Coordination Action to maintain a European network of laboratory facilities with the ability to handle radioactive materials vital to support nuclear safety and long-term management of radioactive waste.
- This Coordination Action will define, develop and construct a new, second-generation materials test reactor for Europe.
Safety of existing nuclear installations
- The purpose of this Coordination Action is to establish a network of organisations involved in decommissioning activities to encourage continuous improvement in competencies and efficiency.
- This Coordination Action will cover all aspects of the safe and reliable operation of nuclear power plants using Soviet designed VVER-440 and VVR-1000 reactors.
- A Network of Excellence to pool research capacities and resolve outstanding issues and uncertainties in severe accident management.
- This Specific Support Action will collate European knowledge and expertise on nuclear decommissioning activities and ensure dissemination through the wider nuclear industry.
- A Specific Support Action designed to identify the medium- to long- term inspection needs of nuclear plants and to assess the research and technical work required to satisfy them.
- This Integrated Project is taking the initial steps towards a common European Standard Software Platform for modelling, recording and recovering computer simulation data for current and future reactor systems.
- An Integrated Project that will develop and refine numerical tools for prediction of the effect of irradiation on major reactor components such as the pressure vessel.
- A Specific Support Action that is organising a workshop on reactor dosimetry results obtained during FP5 on Soviet-designed VVER-type reactors and applying the techniques to assess reactor pressure vessel safety more accurately.
- A Specific Support Action bringing together key players to develop a long-term strategic road map for a sustainable and competitive nuclear fission energy option.