The 10th anniversary of the reactor physics section of the Czech Nuclear Society
Both nuclear power plants (NPPs) in the Czech Republic - Dukovany and Temelin - are different when it comes to the middle part of the fuel cycle. While Dukovany has been using Russian fuel elements since beginning of its operation, Temelín initially used American fuel that was delivered together with I/C System by the US vendor Westinghouse. It also used a different methodological approach. This was the main reason why exchange of information between the NPPs was very formal at the beginning. Later, however, we recognised that in spite of the fact that the methodologies were different the problems encountered at both NPPs seemed to be very similar. These similarities led us to the idea of organising the first ever “face-to-face” exchange of information.
The first meeting took place in 2004 in Jarošov nad Nežárkou, a small village halfway between Temelín and Dukovany and was organized by the Dukovany Reactor Physic Department under the auspices of the Czech Nuclear Society. We invited our colleagues from Slovakian NPPs and they dispatched a small delegation consisting of two people from both Bohunice and Mochovce to take part as observers. The participation of Slovak colleagues inspired us to call this meeting ČMSSRF, which stands for the Bohemian-Moravian-Slovak Meeting of Reactor Physicists.
Photo 1: Participants in the first meeting in Jarošov (2004)
The presentations given at the meeting were divided into two parts. Part one, an informal exercise, consisted of everybody introducing himself or herself and of describing his/her own personal life (important personal jubilees such the anniversaries, children’s birthdays and the team building activities of his department). This became a tradition and subsequent meetings and starts with Temelín and Dukovany reactors physics department giving a funny presentation about the events of previous 12 months. The second part of presentations (more significant, formal and important) was devoted to an exploration of the current problems being experienced and of possible solutions.
The meeting was very useful both for us and our Slovak colleagues. So, we decided to organize this meeting on an annual basis, with responsibility for organising it alternating between Temelín and Dukovany. The second and the third meetings were held in České Budějovice and Třebíč, our “home” cities. We visited interesting towns and villages near the NPPs and besides receiving new technical information we also became familiar with wonderful places that are connected with water and sports in South Bohemia or with wine and UNESCO Czech heritage in South Moravia. This schedule was interrupted in 2010 when the meeting was organized by Mochovce and took place in
Velký Meďér, a beautiful spa town in South Slovakia.
As time passed we gradually expanded the meeting to include other Czech and Slovak organizations active in the nuclear industry. These included, for example, the Nuclear Research Institute Řež, Škoda Nuclear Engineering Plzeň, VUJE Trnava, ALTA, FJFI. Our annual meeting was gradually transformed into a conference. The latest meeting was organized by Temelín in Frymburk and more than 60 people, representing 11 companies, took part. There were also two observers from the Bulgarian NPP, Kozloduy, who were present at our meeting – giving it an international dimension. It may sound funny because Slovakia is an independent state too, but the cooperation with Slovak colleagues was not interrupted in 1993 when our former federated state was divided into two countries.
Photo 2: Participants of our most recent meeting in Frymburk (2013)
We celebrate today the10th anniversary of ČMSSRF thanks to the dedication of two organizations – CEZ a.s. and the Czech Nuclear Society (CNS). The Czech Nuclear Society, which recognized the importance of exchanging information and founded the Section of Reactor Physics as an independent part within its organization, supported us financially too by paying the cost of the conference hall rental and the coffee breaks. At the same time we also present our results during its conferences, in publications and via the website. So thanks to CNS we are looking forward to our next meeting, which will be organised by CEZ and will take place near Prague.