NEA Monthly News Bulletin - April 2010


New publications
OECD Nuclear Energy Agency

Projected Costs of Generating Electricity: 2010 Edition
ISBN: 978-92-64-08430-8. 216 pages.

Partnering for Long-term Management of Radioactive Waste
ISBN: 78-92-64-08369-1. 132 pages.

Disponible également en français :
Partenariats pour la gestion à long terme des déchets radioactifs
ISBN : 978-92-64-08371-4. 150 pages.

Nuclear Fuel Behaviour under Reactivity-initiated Accident (RIA) Conditions
ISBN: 978-92-64-99113-2. 208 pages (2.5 Mb).

National Programmes in Chemical Partitioning
ISBN: 978-92-64-99096-8. 120 pages (3.1 Mb).

Public Attitudes to Nuclear Power
ISBN: 978-92-64-99111-8. 56 pages (1.2 Mb).

Disponible également en français :
L'opinion publique et l'énergie nucléaire
ISBN : 978-92-64-99112-5. 60 pages (1.2 Mb).

More than Just Concrete Realities: The Symbolic Dimension of Radioactive Waste Management
ISBN: 978-92-64-99105-7. 36 pages (158 kb).

Disponible également en français :
Au-delà des seules réalités concrètes : la dimension symbolique de la gestion des déchets radioactifs
ISBN : 978-92-64-99106-4. 40 pages (206 kb).

Radioactive Waste Repositories and Host Regions: Envisaging the Future Together
ISBN: 978-92-64-99128-6. 56 pages (475 kb).

Disponible également en français :
Stockage des déchets radioactifs et territoires d'accueil : envisager l'avenir ensemble
ISBN : 978-92-64-99129-3. 60 pages (269 kb).

Towards Greater Harmonisation of Decommissioning Cost Estimates
ISBN: 978-92-64-99093-7. 16 pages (910 kb).

Disponible également en français :
Vers une harmonisation des estimations des coûts du déclassement
ISBN : 978-92-64-99094-4. 16 pages (960 kb).


Nuclear safety and regulation

The Bureaus of the Committee on Nuclear Regulatory Activities (CNRA) and the Committee on the Safety of Nuclear Installations (CSNI) held meetings on 8 and 10 March respectively, in Rockville, Maryland, USA. Each bureau discussed the finalisation and implementation of the joint CNRA/CSNI strategic plan and reviewed the committees' programmes of work. Additionally, they agreed that future activities on the safety of research reactors and safe, long-term operation of nuclear power plants would be valuable to the member countries and would be included as topics on the next committee meeting agendas.

An NEA workshop on Human Performance and the Operation of New Nuclear Plant Technology, organised by the Committee on the Safety of Nuclear Installations Working Group on Human and Organisational Factors, was hosted by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission in Washington DC, USA on 1-3 March. Over 50 participants from 12 member countries met to discuss the state of research topics relevant to human performance in new nuclear plant control room technology.

The CNRA Working Group on Inspection Practices (WGIP) issued the proceedings from the 9th International Nuclear Regulatory Inspection Workshop on Training and Qualifying of Inspectors, Integration of Inspection Findings, and Inspections of New Plants under Construction. The main purpose of the workshop was to provide a forum for exchange of information on the regulatory inspection activities in these three areas. Download the document.

The 35th Enlarged Halden Programme Group meeting was held in Gol, Norway on 14-19 March. More than 280 participants from all 18 countries participating in the Halden Reactor Project reviewed activities in the main areas of work. The project's research results were disseminated and the research priorities of the member organisations were identified and discussed. Reports on the joint programme results as well as results from participant-sponsored programmes were presented.

RWM publications and reports


Radioactive waste management

The Radioactive Waste Management Committee (RWMC) held its 43rd annual meeting at the NEA on 24-25 March. A dialogue was launched with the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) on the need for clarifying its guidance on radiological protection as it applies to the geological disposal of radioactive waste. The Committee also decided to commence a study on current good practices relating to long-term information and memory preservation in the NEA member countries with the support of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the European Commission. The Committee agreed to prepare a brochure on skills needs for the range of disciplines that contribute to the development of geological repositories. An NEA peer review of the safety case for the planned geological repository in Sweden will be undertaken in 2011. The 4th International Conference on Geological Repositories (IGCR2011) on the theme "National Commitment – Regional/local Confidence" will be held in Yokohama, Japan on 2-5 October 2011.

The Core Group of the Working Party on Decommissioning and Dismantling (WPDD), which met on 2-3 March, decided that its next annual meeting (WPDD-11) will be held in Washington DC, USA, on 16-18 November 2010 and will include two special sessions on:

  • R&D and Innovation Needs for Decommissioning; and
  • The US Decommissioning Scene.

The Group also decided to develop detailed terms of reference for a study on "the role of radiological characterisation in the decommissioning of nuclear facilities". The terms of reference will be presented for approval at WPDD-11.


Radiological protection

Two expert groups of the Committee on Radiation Protection and Public Health (CRPPH) met at NEA offices in March.

The Expert Group on Occupational Exposure (EGOE) approved the publication of its first case study, on operational radiological protection lessons and criteria for new build. Work continued on the second case study on how the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) concept of dose constraints is being implemented in nuclear power plants for occupational exposure management. The CRPPH will also publish a report on the evolution of RP principles and RP regulations from ICRP publication 26 to ICRP publication 60, and subsequently from publication 60 to the latest ICRP general recommendations, publication 103. This report will serve as a template for the developing of a questionnaire for CRPPH members on the "magnitude of resources" that were needed for their national/organisational transition from publication 26 to publication 60, and for the resources they expect will be necessary for the next transition to publication 103. More on EGOE.

At the Expert Group on Best Available Techniques (EGBAT) meeting, it was decided to organise a workshop to allow regulators, utilities and reactor vendors to discuss BAT for the management of radioactive effluents. It was agreed that a workshop session should focus on good practices in implementing effluent management approaches, with discussion of their occupational exposure ramifications. More on EGBAT.


Nuclear science

The first NEA International Workshop on Technology and Components of Accelerator-driven Systems (ADS) was held on 15-17 March in Karlsruhe, Germany, hosted by the Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT). This workshop replaces the former NEA workshops on the utilisation and reliability of high power proton accelerators (HPPA), held for the last time in May 2007. A total of 63 papers were presented in oral or poster sessions. A special session on the European project on partitioning and transmutation, EUROTRANS, was organised, as well as  four technical sessions devoted to current ADS experiments and test facilities, accelerators, neutron sources, and subcritical systems. The papers presented at the workshop will be issued as an NEA report.

Legal section publications and reports


Nuclear development

A key publication, the Projected Costs of Generating Electricity: 2010 Edition, was released in March. This publication, destined to be an essential input into policy discussion about future electricity generating choices, was an update of previous studies but expanded to include data from nearly 200 power plants provided by 17 OECD member countries, 4 non-OECD countries and 4 industrial companies or industry organisations. It covers coal and gas (with and without carbon capture), nuclear, hydro, onshore and offshore wind, biomass, solar, wave and tidal as well as combined heat and power (CHP). The NEA Director-General took part in a press conference on 25 March with the Executive Director of the IEA, Nobuo Tanaka. The results show that nuclear energy is the most competitive solution for electricity generation in all three major OECD regions if financing costs are low, 5% in the study, and when a modest carbon price of USD 30 per tonne of CO2 is included. In the high financing costs case, where the study assumes 10%, nuclear instead is preceded by coal and gas. More information here.


Data Bank

NEA Data Bank newsletter

Computer program services

New computer programs available

15-MAR-2010 NEA-1789 PMK2-VVER440-REPORTS, Final reports on the PMK-2 projects for VVER Safety Studies
10-MAR-2010 CCC-0755 CINDER 1.05, Actinide Transmutation Calculations Code
10-MAR-2010 CCC-0759 TITAN 1.15, A Three-Dimensional Deterministic Radiation Transport Code System
08-MAR-2010 NEA-0829 SCAT-2, Cross Sections and Angular Distributions for Spherical Nuclei by Optical Model
SCAT-2B, Spherical, Optical Model Cross Sections Calculation for N, P, D, T, He3, He4, Heavy Ions

Last reviewed: 9 April 2010