37th Annual Meeting
The 37th Annual Meeting of the Spanish Nuclear Society took place in Burgos, from 28 - 30 September 2011. It coincided with the 40th anniversary of the Santa María de Garoña NPP (www.reunionanualsne.es).The meeting was attended by 600 participants and 100 accompanying guests. In addition, 32 companies took part in the parallel exhibition.
The programme featured 290 technical papers, three interesting courses entitled: Learn more about ..., and three plenary sessions - all of which enjoyed a high level of participation. Special significance was given to the session related to Fukushima, which included the notable presence of Akira Kawano, General Manager of TEPCO, and brought together senior representatives from various countries. In the session entitled: Long-term operation of nuclear facilities speakers presented their views on the long-term operation of nuclear power plants, as well as on the current status and related activities in their respective countries. The session Socio-economic impact of the nuclear sector, which was devoted to an analysis of the economic and social impact that nuclear facilities - and the nuclear sector as a whole - have on their environment was particularly well attended.
The Annual Meeting’s agenda revolved essentially around two main topics: Santa Maria de Garoña NPP and the Fukushima accident and its implications. The first was comprehensively covered by several sessions that addressed the issues raised by the current status of Santa Maria de Garoña NPP. The second theme was addressed during the aforementioned plenary session, which was both interesting and emotional. During this plenary session the preliminary results of stress tests conducted by the operators of the Spain’s NPPs were also commented on. The assessment of the Council for Nuclear Safety (CSN) was also discussed and it was noted that these tests, which are seen as a reassessment of safety margins in the event of extreme scenarios such as the one that occurred in Fukushima, are a rigorous response to the need for Spanish NPPs to continue to conform with the strictest standards of safety. They will also help to identify improvements that will further expand these safety margins.
In addition, monographic sessions were held on such interesting topics as Impacts on health and the environment in the vicinity of a nuclear facility, Experience of Spanish Companies in the Construction of Nuclear Pplants and Knowledge Management in the Latin American Nuclear Industry.
Courses were offered in order to promote the exchange of information and knowledge on topics such as Technological Development of the Spanish Nuclear Industry, The UNESA-EPRI Collaborative Programme, Intelligent Networks and The Nuclear Plant Accident at Fukushima Daiichi.
Nuclear Youth gave a Basic Course in Nuclear Science and Technology and Women in Nuclear (WiN) organised a panel discussion entitled: Let's talk about Fukushima.
In addition to plenary sessions, and as part of the wider technical sessions programme, the latest technological developments in our industry were presented, specifically related to issues such as nuclear safety, fuel, radioactive waste, nuclear medicine or radiation protection. Special importance was given to research and development with regards to the continuous improvement of the operation and maintenance of our plants, as well as to the participation of Spanish industry in new international projects.
The technical programme was complemented by a cultural and social programme that centred around the beautiful city and province of Burgos, its gastronomy and the paleontological treasures of the Sierra de Atapuerca.
During the official dinner SNE handed out its awards and the SNE medal was presented to Jose Dominguis SNE, President of DOMINIGUIS group (LAINSA).
The thirty-eighth Annual Meeting will be held next year, at the same time of the year, in the city of Cáceres, and will be hosted by IBERDROLA.
The SNE has awarded 8 scholarships from the 25 applications that it received as a result of the 2011 call for post-graduate scholarships in the field of nuclear expertise.
The Society also awarded prizes for the 4th AREVA Photo Competition, which was organised for partners and families. A total of 103 photographs were sent in, including many of an excellent technical quality.
The prize for the best SNE 2011 Thesis, Master’s Thesis or Dissertation was awarded to a student studying for a Master’s in Nuclear Engineering and Applications at CIEMAT. The winning entry was selected from around 20 projects.