The aim is to develop a scheme for supporting access to equipment and facilities of EU nuclear research laboratories for graduate and post graduate students, researchers and technicians. A key role of nuclear research infrastructures operators is required in this action. Links with different Euratom fission science and technology platforms and networks could be also beneficial and should be used to avoid duplication. Furthermore, international cooperation with organisations such as OECD/NEA, IAEA, GIF is strongly encouraged. Proposals are required to provide quantified information on the expected number of people benefitting from the proposed scheme.
The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the Euratom Programme of between EUR 1 million and up to a maximum of EUR 2 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
Euratom legislation requires education and training to be available in order to maintain nuclear competences, especially for the staff responsible for nuclear safety, so as to obtain, maintain and broaden expertise and skills. A key concern of policy makers, regulators and industry in the EU is that availability of trained staff could be at risk, especially as a result of the expected high level of retirement and lack of interest among young generation. At the same time, due to high costs, the high quality research and training facilities are spread parsimoniously among countries and unevenly distributed. In this context, a scheme offering access to research and training infrastructures is essential to ensure adequate supply of suitable personnel for many nuclear domain disciplines and for the strengthening of the nuclear safety culture.
The action is expected to contribute within the next few years to the development of multi-disciplinary nuclear competences and increased availability of suitably qualified researchers, engineers and employees in crucial fields like: nuclear safety, radiation protection, decommissioning, radioactive waste management, etc. The action is expected to provide young scientists, researchers and experts with access to high quality nuclear research and training facilities.