Atoms for the Future 2012
The 3rd edition of the conference Atoms for the Future will take place in Paris from the
22 - 25 October 2012. Created and organised by the French Nuclear Society Young Generation Network (SFEN-JG), this event aims to help young professionals and students to learn more about various aspects of nuclear energy and to develop their professional networking.
Offering a format of lectures and technical visits, previous Atoms for the Future conferences have brought together more than 300 participants from all over the world and received outstanding satisfaction ratings by participants. The SFEN-JG is, therefore, committed to continuing with the development of this event and invites others to share in that development and to share in the success of Atoms for the Future.
A wide range of nuclear topics
Atoms for the Future was a bi-annual event organised together with the Russian YGN. It was decided to adapt the conference’s concept by opening it up to an ever broader range of international participants (the working language of the conference is English). The conference’s name was chosen in order to be easily recognisable, portray dynamism and suggest youthful engagement. Following a meeting that took place in France, in which French and foreign students and young professionals participated, the conference was divided into two parts: lectures (2 days) and technical visits (2 to 3 days). Every year, a different theme –Topic of the Week – is defined. In 2010 and 2011 the topics were Nuclear Reactors Development and The Nuclear Fuel Cycle respectively. This year, the conference will focus on NPP Operation and Maintenance.
The degree of technical detail provided during the lectures and the tours is deliberately calibrated to focus the interest of both experts and “newcomers” to the particular topic. Although the lectures often start with the provision of technical information, proceedings gradually progress to more general subjects, such as economics, geopolitics or public acceptance. A considerable amount of time is also dedicated to questions & answers. We try to invite only high-level speakers with recognised skills and experience in order to captivate delegates, including senior business leaders and researchers in the nuclear field. This usually attracts lots of participants, as they don’t often have such an opportunity to meet and discuss pressing nuclear issues with the CEO or board members of large companies.
Exciting technical tours
The technical tours are organised to enable participants to have access to various nuclear facilities in France that cover a broad range of facilities. These facilities feature every stage and aspect of the nuclear fuel cycle and electricity generation business, including research, mining and geological repositories, conversion and enrichment, fuel manufacturing, plant operation and reprocessing. The tours are organised for around 60 persons a year, according to the sites’ capacity for receiving visitors.
Here are three examples of facilities visited during the 2011 Atoms for the Future conference: An enrichment plant run by AREVA, a nuclear chemistry hot-lab operated by the CEA and a nuclear power plant operated jointly by EDF & GDF-Suez. Of course, during both the lectures and the technical tours much time is set aside for an informal exchange between participants during the coffee breaks and social events. This helps to build bridges and encourage networking between people and companies, another major objective of Atoms for the Future.
Organised by young professionals for young professionals
Every year the conference is made possible by the continuous trust shown in it by the sponsors, by the motivation of the organisers (all of whom are volunteers from SFEN-JG staff) and thanks to the support of the companies and lecturers who are willing to share their knowledge and show participants around their facilities. The core organisation team is made up of around 10 people, but many more SFEN-JG members are present during the event. The organisation of the conference, in addition to the financial help given by our sponsors, allows us to charge a nominal conference fee, thereby attracting extra participants.
So far, Atoms for the Future has attracted participants from Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Spain, Finland, the UK, Russia, Sri Lanka, Czech Republic, Italy, USA and France. Over the coming years, SFEN-JG will continue to organise Atoms for the Future, continuously striving to maintain and further improve upon the quality of the event.
The 2012 Atoms for the Future conference will take place from 22 – 25 October 2012, in Paris (France). The conference theme will be: NPP Operation and Maintenance. A range of topics will be discussed, such as site organisation, outage management, heavy components replacement, human factors, fuel for NPPs and R&D support. Visits on offer will include trips to the Chalon/Saint-Marcel facility, the Le Creusot forge and EDF’s Nogent NPP (during an outage). Fees: 50€ students, 150€ young professionals.
For additional information, contact the following website and register your participation in this year’s conference: www.sfenjg.org/Atoms-for-the-Future-2012.