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Project on Enhanced Utilization and Applications of Research Reactors

RR Networks / Coalitions

RR Coalitions and Networks presently promoted and supported by the IAEA aim at consolidation of the international/regional RR sector by establishing grouped entities to serve as international/regional user centres. In this way, countries/regions that do not have RRs or are considering closing an old reactor can gain access to nearby facilities which have up to date technical capabilities including high levels of nuclear safety and security. It is expected that MSs will increasingly need Agency assistance in strategic planning and institutional arrangements for possible national and regional RR coalitions, networks and shared-user facilities. The Agency support is ensured both through the regular budget and extra-budgetary contributions, including ongoing regional Technical Cooperation (TC) projects. In 2008-2011, with the assistance of the IAEA a number of RR coalitions have been formed in Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Caribbean, Baltic and Mediterranean regions. These cover different areas for collaboration, including radioisotope production, neutron activation analysis, neutron imaging, education and training activities. In 2012, citing concerns about fuel production, diminishing technical support and enhanced utilization, a specialized network, the Global TRIGA Research Reactor Network, was established. The efforts of RR Coalitions and Networks currently involve 42 Member States (25 with RRs and 17 without such facilities).