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Nuclear research facilities and other nuclear facilities


Chapter 14

    1. Generic subjects
      1. Management of nuclear safety and radiation protection at CEA
      2. Monitoring of CEA's compliance with its main nuclear safety and radiation protection commitments
      3. Internal authorisations
      4. Periodic safety reviews
      5. Monitoring of sub-criticality
      6. Management of sealed sources of ionising radiation
      7. Revision of water intake and discharge licences
      8. Assessment of seismic hazards
      9. Management of civil engineering projects
      10. Research reactor cores and experimental systems
    2. Topical events in CEA research facilities
      1. CEA centres
      2. Research reactors
      3. Laboratories
      4. Fissile material stores
      5. The POSEIDON irradiator (Saclay)
      6. Effluent and waste treatment installations
      7. Installations undergoing decommissioning
    1. Large national heavy ion accelerator (GANIL)
    2. Laue-Langevin institute high flux reactor
    3. European organization for nuclear research (CERN) installations
    4. The ITER (international thermonuclear experimental reactor) project
    1. Industrial ionisation installations
    2. The radio-pharmaceuticals production facility operated by CIS bio International
    3. Maintenance facilities
    4. Chinon irradiated material facility (AMI)
    5. Inter-regional fuel warehouses (MIR)
    6. CENTRACO waste incineration and melting facility

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The research and other installations regulated by ASN differ widely but are usually small in size. ASN will continue to concentrate on regulating the safety and radiation protection of these installations as a whole and on comparing practices per type of installation in order to choose the best ones and thus encourage operating experience feedback.

ASN is of the opinion that the “major commitments” initiative should be pursued and should be subject to formal six-monthly monitoring by CEA. It is felt that the commitments, by cordoning a limited number of high-stake projects, help to avoid postponement of meeting of commitments for reasons other than those of justifiably unforeseen technical problems. It is important that CEA devote the budgetary and human resources to fulfilling its “major commitments”. ASN has, accordingly, asked CEA to pursue this approach, which should lead to improved project management.

In 2011, ASN will continue to focus on management of the civil engineering operations on the construction sites for new installations and on renovation work for existing installations. It will also be attentive to meeting deadlines for transfer of nuclear materials stored in the MCMF or in MASURCA to the new MAGENTA installation.

In 2011, ASN will also continue its monitoring in the field of measures introduced within the framework of CEA's internal authorisations system. Monitoring will cover: the process as a whole; the justification of compliance with the criteria for implementation of the decision; and verification of independence, within CEA, between the applicants, the support services and first and second level inspectors.

Furthermore, ASN will examine the conclusions of the safety review for  the ÉOLE and MINERVE installations, programmed by CEA for shutdown within 10 years. The Authority will also examine the safety of the GANIL installation, at the same time as examination of the request for amendment to the decree for the installation, with a view to setting up of a new accelerator. It will complete examination of the safety review file for the CIS bio international radiopharmaceuticals production installation, in order to pronounce on the acceptability of its continued operation in the mid/long terms.

ASN will also examine the request for authorisation file for the ITER installation project, which will be the subject of a meeting of members of the Advisory Committee for plants and members of the Advisory Committee for reactors.

ASN will continue its actions relative to commissioning of installations such as STELLA (Saclay centre's effluent treatment plant) or RJH (a research reactor for production of artificial radioelements).

Moreover, in 2011, ASN will examine − via examination of the ASTRID prototype project and work on fourth generation reactors (“Generation IV”) − the operating feedback on experience with fast neutron reactors (PHÉNIX, SUPERPHÉNIX and RAPSODIE, now shutdown), as well as elements requested from the CEA/EDF/AREVA consortium for comparison, in terms of safety, of the different systems.

Finally, in 2011, ASN will continue its actions to foster international harmonisation in the area of safety of research reactors, within the framework of the IAEA's fifth meeting on the Convention on Nuclear Safety, scheduled for 2011 (see chapter 7), as well as in Europe, within the framework of WENRA and the work of the NEA. It will also continue to be an active contributor to consideration, on the international level, of the ageing of installations and the safety of supply of radioelements for medical use.

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