Service Communautaire d'Information sur la Recherche et le Développement - CORDIS

Specific Challenge: The fast and reliable prediction of severe accident progression and the anticipation of the source term in case of severe accident is of paramount importance for the protection of people in triggering the appropriate response to a nuclear emergency. The need to improve the tools for predicting the plant status and the source term has been identified as a priority following the Fukushima accident as it gives input to accident management strategies and for dose projection caused by atmospheric releases.

Scope: For use in emergency operation centres, this tool should be adapted to all types of reactors in operation or foreseeable in the EU. Furthermore, this tool should be able to predict the different possible accidental scenarios and provide results in a fast and user-friendly way. Such tool should start with minimal input data from nuclear power plants but be able to incorporate additional refinement as more information becomes available in order to improve predictions. It should also rely on state of the art knowledge on severe accident phenomenology and mitigation measures in order to give results with enough accuracy, confidence and reduced uncertainties. International cooperation with notably Japan, the United States of America, Ukraine and the Russian Federation would be beneficial in this area and will be considered during evaluation.

Expected impact: This research will first of all lead to reinforcing nuclear safety through improved accident management procedures that will ensure a faster and site specific response to nuclear emergencies. The tool to be developed is also to be used for the further assessment of existing severe accident management guidelines. It will improve the availability and reliability of dose projection caused by atmospheric releases following a nuclear accident and respond to the need identified as a priority following the Fukushima accident. In the long term, it is also expected that this research will lead to a further exchange of approaches in this domain at EU level and to the reinforcing of EU leadership in reactor safety technology and nuclear emergency management.

Type of action: Research and innovation actions.

Additional information: The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the Euratom of between EUR 2 and 4 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.