The Generation IV International Forum (GIF) is a co-operative international endeavour which was set up to carry out the research and development needed to establish the feasibility and performance capabilities of the next generation nuclear energy systems.
The goals adopted by GIF provided the basis for identifying and selecting six nuclear energy systems for further development. The selected systems are based on a variety of reactor, energy conversion and fuel cycle technologies. Their designs include thermal and fast neutron spectra cores, closed and open fuel cycles. The reactors range in size from very small to very large.Depending on their respective degree of technical maturity, the first Generation IV systems are expected to be deployed commercially around 2030-2040.
The United Kingdom becomes a party to the GIF Framework Agreement
The Generation IV International Forum (GIF) Framework Agreement for International Collaboration on Research and Development of Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems has been ratified by the United Kingdom. The instrument of ratification to the Framework Agreement signed by Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, was deposited to the NEA by Ian Johnson and Rob Arnold of the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on 17 October 2018. The United Kingdom will start participating in GIF research and development activities in 2019. The GIF is a co-operative international endeavour which was established to carry out the research and development needed to establish the feasibility and performance capabilities of the next generation of nuclear energy systems.
Australia accedes to the GIF Framework Agreement
On 14 September 2017, Australia deposited its instrument of accession to the Generation IV International Forum (GIF) Framework Agreement for International Collaboration on Research and Development of Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems. A ceremony was held at the OECD Château which included His Excellency Mr Brian Pontifex, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Australia to the OECD, and Dr Adrian (Adi) Paterson, CEO of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO). The GIF is a co operative international endeavour which was established to carry out the research and development needed to establish the feasibility and performance capabilities of the next generation of nuclear energy systems. Australia became the 14th member of the GIF on 22 June 2016 when it signed the GIF Charter. Acceding to the Framework Agreement will allow Australia to become actively engaged in R&D projects related to Generation IV systems, particularly in R&D projects on advanced materials.
The fourth symposium of the Generation IV International Forum (GIF) took place on 16-17 October 2018 in Paris, jointly held in association with the Atoms for the Future 2018 Conference organised by the French Nuclear Society Young Generation Network. The call for papers for this year's symposium attracted nearly 100 papers, half of which were presented during technical sessions. The event, which brought together over 300 participants, also featured plenary sessions on the development of advanced reactors, the benefits of early engagement with regulators, the role of innovation, and the status of demonstration projects. It was followed by a meeting of the GIF Policy Group, during which the outgoing Chair Mr François Gauché of the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) welcomed the ratification of the GIF Framework Agreement by the United Kingdom. The Group elected Mr Hideki Kamide of the Japan Atomic Energy Agency as its Chairman for the 2019-2021 period.
Proliferation Resistance and Physical Protection Workshop
The GIF Proliferation Resistance and Physical Protection Working Group (PRPPWG) has been working with the six GIF reactor systems to develop a sustained and structured interaction between the system designers and PR&PP experts in order to help the designers incorporate Proliferation Resistance and Physical Protection (PR&PP) characteristics in different stages of ongoing design efforts.
The PRPPWG conducted a workshop in April 2017 with representatives from the six GIF systems to plan for the future mutual activities between the reactor systems and the PRPPWG and take further next steps towards achieving this goal. The workshop gave each reactor system the opportunity to discuss updates in their design since the previous workshops held in the 2008-2010 time period. In turn, the PRPPWG presented the current status of the methodology and information on how to incorporate PR&PP into the design process.
As a next step in this activity, the PRPPWG will work with the six design groups to develop a roadmap for future interactions on the implementation of PRPP-by-design for Gen IV systems.
43rd GIF Policy Group Meeting
On 13-14 April 2017, the Generation IV International Forum (GIF) held its semi-annual Policy Group (PG) meeting in Paris, France, hosted by the NEA. Participants at this meeting included representatives from twelve GIF member countries, including the ten signatories of the GIF Framework Agreement and Australia, which joined the GIF in June 2016 and is currently in the process of acceding to the GIF Framework Agreement. The United Kingdom, one of the first countries to join GIF but currently a non-active member, was also represented at the meeting as an observer, and was encouraged by the PG to consider acceding to the GIF Framework Agreement. The PG also reviewed the progress in the development of safety design criteria and guidelines for the sodium-cooled fast reactor and their extension to other Generation IV systems, as well as laid the groundwork for the 4th GIF Symposium to be held on 16-17 October 2018. Deployment challenges for Generation IV systems in future energy markets and strengthening interaction with the private sector were also examined, building on the discussions with industry experts and professionals from large corporations and startups during the NEA workshop on "Advanced Reactor Systems and Future Energy Market Needs", which took place the previous day.
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