JINR took part in first meeting of MBIR IRC Advisory Board

Media, 26 July 2022

On 12 — 13 July, representatives of JINR Vice-Director Latchesar Kostov and FLNP Director Valery Shvetsov took part in the first meeting of the Advisory Board of the International Research Centre based on the MBIR reactor in Dimitrovgrad, Ulyanovsk region. At the meeting, participants discussed the issues of joining the Consortium International Research Centre MBIR, the organisation of work within the relevant committees as part of the MBIR IRC Advisory Board, as well as the future international programme of experimental research at the facility.

Image © Rosatom

Opening the meeting, Deputy Director General of the State Corporation “Rosatom” for Science and Strategy Yuri Olenin noted the importance of the MBIR project and its contribution to the development of new generation nuclear technologies. He highlighted that the MBIR project would provide the global nuclear industry with a modern and technologically advanced research infrastructure for the next 50 years.

According to Konstantin Vergazov, CEO of the Consortium International Research Centre MBIR LLC (organisation of the State Corporation “Rosatom”), currently it has been possible to form an international scientific platform based on the Consortium “MBIR IRC”, which will develop approaches to the creation of high-tech and safe nuclear generation facilities of generation IV.

The status of the construction of the MBIR reactor was considered at the meeting. Participants discussed the structure and rules of work of the MBIR Advisory Board. On behalf of JINR, the Board included Latchesar Kostov and Boris Sharkov, Special Representative of the JINR Director for Cooperation with International and Russian scientific organisations. During the event, the membership and research directions of the relevant committees of the Board were identified and discussed: the closure of NFC; the study of materials and fuel; the safety of the use of nuclear technologies; code validation; non-energy applications of nuclear technologies. FLNP JINR Valery Shvetsov became one of participants of the latter. Vladimir Skuratov, Head of the Sector N8 Ion-implantation nanotechnology and radiation materials science FLNR JINR, joined the Materials and Fuel Research Committee.

Photo © Rosatom

The programme of future experimental research for 2028 – 2040 was discussed, as well as the infrastructure of the future international research centre MBIR. Participants considered the experience of international centres based on research reactors, as well as approaches to the development of national nuclear projects and advanced research at the MBIR facility in cooperation with Rosatom. Valery Shvetsov gave a presentation on research on extracted neutron beams.

Commenting on the recent meeting, Valery Shvetsov noted that in order to create new reactors, fuel, and fuel-emitting assemblies must be tested on already operating reactors with very high flux density. “There is currently one such reactor in the territory of the Russian Federation – BOR-60 in Dimitrovgrad, but its service life is coming to an end. MBIR is intended to be an effective replacement. The International Research Centre MBIR will conduct developments in the field of materials science, research on reactor fuel, and structural materials,” he said. These research will be carried out using channels in the irradiation zone, including on independent loop channels, with various types of heat carriers. In addition, the MBIR design assumes special extracorporeal devices, i.e. horizontal experimental channels. “This may be of some interest to FLNP JINR. Therefore, in cooperation with scientists of the SSC RF-FEI (Obninsk), we are considering a possible scientific programme based on the extracted MBIR beams,” FLNP Director said. He also highlighted that the work of the relevant committees at the meeting had been very productive. In particular, scientists from Obninsk (JSC “SSC RF-FEI”, the organisation of the scientific division of the State Corporation “Rosatom”) discussed the possibilities of research at MBIR on boron-neutron capture therapy – the newest direction in the treatment of oncological diseases.

Valery Shvetsov said that now there was an active involvement of foreign partners in the Consortium. “During the meeting, we were able to visit the MBIR construction site and get acquainted with the progress achieved, which causes great optimism. It is already obvious that, regardless of the participation of foreign partners, the MBIR will be completed and put into operation,” Valery Shvetsov highlighted.

Photo © Rosatom

More than 80 scientists, experts, and leaders from more than 30 leading scientific centres of Algeria, Armenia, China, India, Kazakhstan, Russia, Vietnam, Uzbekistan took part in the first meeting of the Board in person and online. International organisations were presented by JINR and IAEA at the meeting.

We shall remind that in October 2021, the Leader of the Consortium International Research Centre MBIR LLC and the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research signed an agreement on cooperation in the fields of basic scientific and applied research at the multipurpose fast neutron research reactor (MBIR). The agreement is aimed to facilitate the creation of an international research centre based on the MBIR reactor (IRC MBIR) for the implementation of scientific and technological research in the field of nuclear physics, high energy and plasma physics, radiation materials science, and other promising scientific areas. In addition, IRC MBIR aims to achieve competencies for the development of fourth generation reactor technologies and the implementation of a two-component nuclear power system. RAS Academician, Dean of the Faculty of Chemistry of Lomonosov Moscow State University Stepan Kalmykov was elected the Chairman of the IRC MBIR Advisory Board.

For reference:

The State Corporation “Rosatom” is building a unique research facility, a Multipurpose Fast Neutron Research Reactor (MBIR), as part of the comprehensive programme “Development of Technology, Technologies, and Scientific Research in the Field of Nuclear Energy Use in the Russian Federation”. The reactor is being built in the city of Dimitrovgrad, Ulyanovsk region, on the basis of JSC “SSC RIAR”.

The MBIR International Research Centre (ICR) is being created based on the MBIR rector. Its scientific group will include Russian and foreign specialists. The consortium, the International Research Centre Based on the MBIR Reactor, will carry out activities of the Centre. Such an approach will enable flexible use of the reactor resource that meets the needs of participants of the scientific community.