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[en] Since the early nineteen seventies, a lot of effort has been put into trying to define and evaluate the proliferation resistance of nuclear energy systems and their associated nuclear fuel cycles. Past studies put in evidence how it was not possible to conceive a proliferation-free nuclear fuel cycle (hence the need of a suitable safeguards system), but also stressed that not all of the available options are equivalent. The topic has become of renewed interest, in the context of the innovative reactor and nuclear energy systems design concepts presently under development. New reactors will have to exhibit and demonstrate enhanced features with respect to the existing ones. It is common practice to classify Proliferation Resistance and Physical Protection characteristics of a system as either intrinsic, i.e. belonging to the system, or extrinsic, such as those related to the application of international safeguards. This paper will summarise in a critical way some of the Proliferation Resistance Physical Protection (PRPP) intrinsic features that have emerged so far, in a number of studies and reports available in this field, and can contribute to provide a first input to designers to brainstorm on a number of possible requirements. This survey is part of a JRC activity contributing to the Generation 4. International Forum (GIF).
[en] March 2007 marked the 50th anniversary of the signing of one of the founding treaties of the European Community. The EURATOM Treaty has its origins at a time when the stability of energy supplies in Europe was a major concern. Recently, much debate has centred on the possible reform or repeal of some parts of the treaty, given that its original aim was to promote and oversee the development of nuclear energy in Europe. This debate has focused attention on the future contribution of nuclear power to increasing energy demands in an enlarged Europe. However, despite these issues there is near universal agreement that the EURATOM Treaty has played a vital role in the protection of European citizens through the controls required for nuclear materials. Chapter 7 of the treaty (Safeguards) confers wide regulatory powers to the European Commission to ensure that civil nuclear materials are not diverted from their intended use as declared by the operators. This paper describes the early period of operation of the safeguards inspectorate, and gives statistics on the numbers and types of inspections carried out by the EURATOM inspectors, and discusses from an operational point of view the value of inspection activities. Further, a critical appraisal of Articles 77-85 within Chapter 7 is made. The paper also considers those safeguards requirements that are important to strengthen, in order to maintain a strong regulatory system to oversee future challenges, particularly in the context of increasing decommissioning activities within Europe. It is noteworthy that fifty-years after the founding of the treaty, many of the concerns about security of energy supply have re-emerged. It is a measure of the vision and forward thinking of its founders that the treaty has successfully overseen the safe and secure development of nuclear power in Europe (which currently provides a third of its electricity needs) and despite the many changes and developments that have occurred, that the objectives concerning safeguarding nuclear materials have been met as intended. The controls envisaged at that time remain fully relevant today
[en] The IAEA has requested that the accepted principles of best practice for the use of radiometric modelling codes, in the Non Destructive Assay (Nda) field of the nuclear industry, should be documented. These include various code types, from discrete ordinate and Monte Carlo transport codes, to reactor physics burnup codes. In the nuclear industry, these codes are used for a variety of application domains including nuclear material safeguards, to waste assay and environmental remediation. The intention of this guide, by documenting best practice, is to both provide confidence for technical, management and regulatory staff, in the validity of the results of modelling codes, and provide a convenient knowledge base for technical staff in this highly specialist field. A specialist group of experts was convened under the auspices of the ESARDA Nda working group, seeking specialist input from recognized experts in the industry as appropriate. The resulting good practice guide is not intended as an exhaustive, prescriptive document. Rather, it is hoped that practitioners, managers and regulators, can use the document to provide guidance as to acceptable practices governing the use of these specialist codes. It should be noted that some degree of prior familiarity with the physics, codes, modelling techniques and applications is assumed; the guide is not suitable for a complete novice. Following introductory remarks, scope and overview of modelling methods the bulk of the guide is contained in 7 targeted sections. These set out good practice associated with key aspects which are: Problem definition, Benchmarking / validation, Training / competency, Quality Assurance, Nuclear Data, Physics treatments, Uncertainties. A reference list is provided allowing the reader to explore specific aspects in detail. For ease of reference an Appendix summarising important basic nuclear data is provided. It is concluded that modelling tools are well developed and in widespread use and, properly applied are powerful and accurate. It is anticipated that the state of best practice will continue to evolve.
[en] Limes (Land/Sea Integrated Monitoring for European Security) is a FP6-funded project which aims at developing satellite-based services for a range of security-related applications such as maritime, land and border surveillance and emergency response. Limes started in December 2006 and will run until early 2010. Most of the development work has now been concluded and was tested in a number of service demonstrations. Limes contains a work package focused on Treaty Monitoring, which has the objective to provide an integrated platform supporting the non proliferation image analyst in verifying treaty compliance. The main aspects addressed by the work package are: increased automation of the image processing work flow, in particular in the areas of object-based change analysis, 3 D information extraction and processing of radar imagery. Improved information management using a GIS based platform capable of integrating information from multiple sources and time-frames, including satellite imagery, site models, open source information, reports, etc. The Treaty Monitoring work package carried out two service demonstrations in 2008 and 2009 using the nuclear site Olkiluoto (Finland), which hosts a nuclear facility under construction. The demonstration scenario was the monitoring of construction activities using different types of satellite imagery as well as Open Source information. The demonstration and platform validation was performed at the European Satellite Centre (EUSC) and the results were presented to a number of potential users including IAEA and D G-TREN. The paper presents the achievements of the Treaty Monitoring work package and in particular the results of the platform demonstrations.
[en] Unknown nuclear material may originate from several sources. Nuclear forensics allows by using fingerprinting and comparison with reference data to determine the origin, the intended use, the last legal owner and the smuggling route. These information are essential in the cause of theft or diversion as measures of safeguards can be implemented to prevent future thefts. Certain measurable parameters can point to a specific material and provide therefore a fingerprint of the unknown material. Comparing the measured parameters with reference material give clues to the origin and the last legal owner. Characteristic parameters and possible information they contain are presented.
[en] 241Pu has the shortest half-life of the abundant plutonium isotopes present in reprocessed irradiated nuclear fuel with a value of approximately 14.3 years. It is important to know the half-life of 241Pu with a higher fractional accuracy than that of the other plutonium isotopes because the half-life of 241Pu and its associated uncertainty affects the estimation by decay calculation of both the total amount of separated plutonium in storage and the determination of the total plutonium mass by non-destructive assay. This paper addresses the determination of the 241Pu half-life using nuclear calorimetry by the measurement of the thermal power as 241Pu evolves in time from a sealed plutonium source, ideally initially rich in 241Pu and chemically stripped of 241Am. The absolute accuracy of nuclear calorimeters can be ensured over long periods of time (many years) using long-lived nuclear reference materials and/or traceable electrical heat standards. One can, therefore, expect nuclear calorimetry to offer an accurate way to determine the half-life of 241Pu, which is comparable in quality and independent, yet complementary, to other approaches. Temporal analysis of the power-versus-time data also yields an estimate of the specific power of 241Pu, which other methods do not. After describing the principle of the method and developing the pertinent mathematical expressions, we outline the approach by drawing on some unpublished notes of Kenneth C. Jordan who carried out such experiments at the Mound Laboratory over 40 years ago. Today, Jordan’s work remains possibly the most significant experiment of its type to the 241Pu nuclear data evaluator. However, objectively assigning confidence to his results is problematic because the details of the experiments and data reduction have never been adequately reported. This work goes some way to that end but, without the raw data and first-hand knowledge, cannot provide a complete record. We conclude that a new high-accuracy nuclear calorimetry campaign to re-measure the 241Pu half-life and specific 241Pu has the shortest half-life of the abundant plutonium isotopes present in reprocessed irradiated nuclear fuel with a value of approximately 14.3 years. It is important to know the half-life of 241Pu with a higher fractional accuracy than that of the other plutonium isotopes because the half-life of 241Pu and its associated uncertainty affects the estimation by decay calculation of both the total amount of separated plutonium in storage and the determination of the total plutonium mass by non-destructive assay. This paper addresses the determination of the 241Pu half-life using nuclear calorimetry by the measurement of the thermal power as 241Pu evolves in time from a sealed plutonium source, ideally initially rich in 241Pu and chemically stripped of 241Am. The absolute accuracy of nuclear calorimeters can be ensured over long periods of time (many years) using long-lived nuclear reference materials and/or traceable electrical heat standards. One can, therefore, expect nuclear calorimetry to offer an accurate way to determine the half-life of 241Pu, which is comparable in quality and independent, yet complementary, to other approaches. Temporal analysis of the power-versus-time data also yields an estimate of the specific power of 241Pu, which other methods do not. After describing the principle of the method and developing the pertinent mathematical expressions, we outline the approach by drawing on some unpublished notes of Kenneth C. Jordan who carried out such experiments at the Mound Laboratory over 40 years ago. Today, Jordan’s work remains possibly the most significant experiment of its type to the 241Pu nuclear data evaluator. However, objectively assigning confidence to his results is problematic because the details of the experiments and data reduction have never been adequately reported. This work goes some way to that end but, without the raw data and first-hand knowledge, cannot provide a complete record. We conclude that a new high-accuracy nuclear calorimetry campaign to re-measure the 241Pu half-life and specific
[en] The paper describes the practical implementation of the idea of 3S: safety, security and safeguards synergy, which was widely discussed at the relevant forums, in particular at the Seoul summit. The idea was aimed at improving the efficiency of the cooperation between these elements, which have relatively large number of common points, but at the same time have their proper features. Careful consideration has showed that the sphere of non-destructive testing is the most appropriate one to start 3S synergy implementation. Non-destructive testing methods and devices are widely applied in each S-element and could quite often be retargeted. The prototype of closure weld seam was inspected by the means of standard ultrasonic echo-pulse method. However, the collected data was processed with developed mathematical algorithm, that allows to use this information for security and safeguard purposes as tagging instrument. The main challenges for industrial application were defined.
[en] As global uranium enrichment capacity under international safeguards expands, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is challenged to develop effective safeguards approaches at gaseous centrifuge enrichment plants, particularly high‑capacity plants, while working within budgetary constraints. New safeguards approaches should meet the high‑level verification objectives for such facilities (i.e., timely detection of: diversion of declared material, excess production beyond declared amounts, and production of enrichment levels higher than declared), but should also strive for efficiency advantages in implementation, for both the IAEA and operators. Under the Agency’s State- level approach to safeguards implementation, the Agency needs a flexible toolbox of technologies, allowing tailoring of safeguards measures for each individual enrichment facility. In this paper, the potential roles and development status for three different types of unattended measurement instrumentation are discussed. On‑Line Enrichment Monitors (OLEM) could provide continuous enrichment measurement for 100% of the declared gas flowing through unit header pipes. Unattended Cylinder Verification Stations (UCVS) could provide unattended verification of the declared uranium mass and enrichment of 100% of the cylinders moving through the plant, but also apply and verify an ‘NDA Fingerprint’ to preserve verification knowledge on the contents of each cylinder throughout its life in the facility. Sharing of the operator’s load cell signals from feed and withdrawal stations could count all cylinders introduced to the process and provide periodic monitoring of the uranium mass balance for in‑process material. The integration of load cell, OLEM and UCVS data streams offers the possibility for 100% verification of declared cylinder flow, and enables the periodic verification of the declared 235U mass balance in the plant. These new capabilities would enhance the IAEA’s effectiveness in meeting the high‑level verification objectives at enrichment facilities. In addition, such unattended instrumentation could reduce or eliminate the need for routine interim inspections, and significantly reduce the need for drawing samples from gas and cylinders during inspections—thereby achieving operational efficiencies.
[en] Nuclear forensics is the analysis of intercepted illicit nuclear or radioactive material and any associated material to provide evidence for nuclear attribution by determining origin, history, transit routes and purpose involving such material. Nuclear forensics activities include sampling of the illicit material, analysis of the samples and evaluation of the attribution by comparing the analysed data with database or numerical simulation. Because the nuclear forensics methodologies provide hints of the origin of the nuclear materials used in illegal dealings or nuclear terrorism, it contributes to identify and indict offenders, hence to enhance deterrent effect against such terrorism. Worldwide network on nuclear forensics can lead to strengthening global nuclear security regime. In the ESARDA Symposium 2015, the results of research and development of fundamental nuclear forensics technologies performed in Japan Atomic Energy Agency during the term of 2011-2013 were reported, namely (1) technique to analyse isotopic composition of nuclear material, (2) technique to identify the impurities contained in the material, (3) technique to determine the age of the purified material by measuring the isotopic ratio of daughter thorium to parent uranium, (4) technique to make image data by observing particle shapes with electron microscope, and (5) prototype nuclear forensics library for comparison of the analysed data with database in order to evaluate its evidence such as origin and history. Japan’s capability on nuclear forensics and effective international cooperation are also mentioned for contribution to the international nuclear forensics community.
[en] Civil Society is increasingly involved in the policy area of international arms control. Their opportunities are very limited for compliance control in the nuclear nonproliferation regime due to its particular sensitivity. The severe gaps of nuclear safeguards with respect to the capabilities to detect clandestine facilities render marginal civil society contributions highly influential and controversial. More and more data get available for the civil society that can be used to expose potential violations of the NPT. A systematic framework is presented to classify civil society contributions that allows for a systematic study. This classification uses the two parameters (a) affected safeguards stage and (b) degree of integration with the official procedures. These parameters may have the following defined values: (a) The affected safeguards stage can be i. Development and demonstration of new methodologies and technologies ii. Fact finding and data gathering iii. Sharing and publication of data and information iv. Technical analysis of data and information v. Determination of non-compliance vi. Political interpretation (b) The degree of integration can be i. Without a relation ii. Indirect connection iii. Informal interaction iv. Official contribution or mandate. A prominent example for civil society contributions is the increasing availability and capability to acquire and analyze satellite images. An emerging field is environmental sampling, analysis and related atmospheric transport simulation. These and other opportunities are put in the systematic framework to discuss their demonstrated and potential impact. In particular, possible contributions that civil society may offer for improving the detectability of unreported facilities and activities are considered with their chances and risks.