Agreement Signed on Collaborative ATLAS-2 Project Covers Reactor Safety and Accident Management Issues
A research and collaboration agreement to foster local expertise in nuclear safety has been signed by Khalifa University of Science and Technology and the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR).
The agreement was signed by Christer Viktorsson, FANR Director-General, and Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice President of Khalifa University, during a ceremony held at FANR’s headquarters.
According to the agreement, FANR and Khalifa University will continue their joint work on the Advanced Thermal-hydraulic Test Loop for Accident Simulation Project Phase 2 (ATLAS-2), an international project jointly organized by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA).
ATLAS-2 focuses on addressing thermal-hydraulic safety and accident management issues relevant for APR1400 reactor types. APR 1400 is a Generation III pressurized water type nuclear reactor developed by South Korea. A variant of the APR1400 reactor is employed at the UAE’s Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant and this collaborative agreement is designed to familiarize UAE students and researchers with the reactor and build local human capacities in nuclear safety through intensive research activities.
Christer Viktorsson, Director General of FANR, said: “Since FANR’s establishment in 2009 we have prioritized human capacity development in nuclear safety. Through this research agreement, Emirati students and researchers will learn about the critical safety features of nuclear systems utilizing various coding systems, including how to generate and modify plant inputs and study test results. Likewise, the training material produced by our work on the ATLAS-2 project will serve as a valuable resource to post-graduate students and researchers for years to come.”
Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice-President, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, said: “The sponsored research and collaboration agreement with FANR will enable us to undertake research into thermal hydraulic studies as part of the ATLAS-2 project. This collaboration is in line with the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, which emphasizes the importance of sustainability of energy and water. It also concurs with Khalifa University’s mandate which includes education, research and advancement of knowledge. Through this agreement, we believe, we will be contributing effectively to fostering local expertise on nuclear safety in the UAE and to produce comprehensive training material for future safety analysis.”
Following the signing ceremony, FANR and Khalifa University will work to present their collective research findings on one of the relevant tests at the upcoming ATLAS-2 Project Review Meeting in October 2018, which will take place in South Korea. The ATLAS-2 project is supported by the safety organizations and industry in Korea, Belgium, Czech Republic, China, France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates and the United States.
Khalifa University and FANR are already collaborating on nuclear research, especially in safety and human capital development. In April this year, FANR’s Secondary Standards Dosimetry Laboratory (SSDL) was inaugurated at the university premises. The SSDL helps to provide radiation measurement and calibration services to ensure that accurately known doses are delivered to patients undergoing diagnosis and therapy, and that radiation measurement instruments used throughout the UAE, including in the nuclear energy program, provide the expected degree of accuracy to support radiation protection.
The laboratory also assists licensees, whether in medical, industrial or nuclear sector, to comply with FANR regulations as well as enable them to obtain the calibration services for their instruments locally within the UAE, rather than sending their equipment abroad.