Title: Sustainable Integration of EU Research in Severe Accident Phenomenology and Management
Citation: NUCLEAR ENGINEERING AND DESIGN vol. 241 no. 9 p. 3451-3460
Publication Year: 2011
JRC N°: JRC67153
ISSN: 0029-5493
URI: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/nucengdes
DOI: 10.1016/j.nucengdes.2011.01.053
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: In order to optimise the use of the available means and to constitute sustainable research groups in the European Union, the Severe Accident Research NETwork of Excellence (SARNET) has gathered, between 2004 and 2008, 51 organizations representing most of the actors involved in severe accident (SA) research in Europe plus Canada. This project was co-funded by the European Commission (EC) under the 6th Euratom Framework Programme. Its objective was to resolve the most important pending issues for enhancing, in regard of SA, the safety of existing and future nuclear power plants (NPPs). SARNET tackled the fragmentation that existed between the national R&D programmes, in defining common research programmes and developing common computer codes and methodologies for safety assessment. The Joint Programme of Activities consisted in: – Implementing an advanced communication tool for accessing all project information, fostering exchange of information, and managing documents; – Harmonizing and re-orienting the research programmes, and defining new ones; – Analyzing the experimental results provided by research programmes in order to elaborate a common understanding of relevant phenomena; – Developing the ASTEC code (integral computer code used to predict the NPP behaviour during a postulated SA) by capitalizing in terms of physical models the knowledge produced within SARNET; – Developing scientific databases, in which the results of research experimental programmes are stored in a common format; – Developing a common methodology for probabilistic safety assessment of NPPs; – Developing short courses and writing a text book on severe accidents for students and researchers; – Promoting personnel mobility amongst various European organizations. This paper presents the major achievements after four and a half years of operation of the network, in terms of knowledge gained, of improvements of the ASTEC reference code, of dissemination of results and of integration of the research programmes conducted by the various partners. Most initial objectives were reached but the continuation of the SARNET network, co-funded by EC in the 7th Framework Programme (SARNET2 project that started in April 2009 for 4 years), will consolidate the first assets and focus mainly on the highest priority pending issues as determined during the first period. The objective will be also to make the network evolve towards a complete self-sustainability.
JRC Directorate:Nuclear Safety and Security

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