Issue No.8 Spring
(April 2005)


ENS News

ENS President's Contribution

Tapping Unusual Quarters

ENS Events

PIME 2005

RRFM 2005

ETRAP 2005

ENC 2005

Member Societies & Corporate Members

News from Poland

News from Lithuinia

Corporate communication

YGN Report

Young nuclear specialists in the new Europe

European Institutions

7th Framework Programme

News from Bulgaria

ENS World News

International Ministerial Conference in Paris

NEA Publication

NucNet News

ENS Members

Links to ENS Member Societies

Links to ENS Corporate Members

Editorial staff
RRFM 2005RRFM 2005

ETRAP 2005
23-25 November 2005 in Brussels




RRFM 2005

From 10-13 April, around 200 engineers and research reactor operators from 29 countries across 4 continents congregated in Budapest for the ninth annual RRFM (Research Reactor and Fuel Management) conference. Most attendees were from Europe, but a large delegation of Americans were also present at this specialised conference. They were primarily interested in the transportation and storage of spent fuel.

The RRFM 2005 agenda centred around 4 main sessions. At the end of the conference, Paul Gubel, the Programme Committee Chairman summarised the main messages of the 4 sessions as follows:

Session 1 (International Topics) confirmed that research reactors will still be needed for a long time, whether it be for testing materials for innovative power reactors or for the production of radio-isotopes. The replacement of ageing research reactors must, therefore, be envisaged. At the same time, the risk of highly-enriched fuel being diverted for malicious purposes must be countered. Measures such as the Nuclear Threat Initiative are being implemented for this purpose.

Session 2 (Fuel development, qualification, fabrication and licensing) provided an update on the status of development of high-density UMo fuels. The swelling problems previously encountered gave rise to a number of applied R&D programmes in several countries, including France, the Russian Federation and the USA. The objective is to have a UMo fuel licensed by 2010.

Session 3 (Reactor operation, fuel safety, core conversion) highlighted the difficulty of reactor conversion. There are still 105 research reactors to be converted by 2014.

Session 4 (Spent fuel management, back-end options, transportation) heard the announcement that the US take-back programme would be extended by 10 years. Other topics presented during this session included the definition of optimal reprocessing parameters, the confirmation that research reactor fuel can be reprocessed, the characterisation of corrosion behaviour and the experience gained by various countries relative to storage and final disposal."

Among the many quality presentations we would like to single out the one entitled "Out of pile French research programme on the U-Mo/Al system: first results," by a team of 10 researchers from the CEA, the University of Rennes (France) and AREVA.

Several inventions by H. Bonnet, Head of the Belgian Institute for

Radio Elements, are also worthy of note. Bonnet drew the attention of participants to the threat to the continuity of supply of radio-isotopes that the current conversion programme, coupled with the gradual phasing out of ageing high flux reactors, poses.

Next year, RRFM will take place in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, from 23-26 April.

Home l Top l Disclaimer l Copyright l Webmaster