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The division was organized to promote the advancement of knowledge of the use of particle accelerator technologies for nuclear and other applications. It focuses on production of neutrons and other particles, utilization of these particles for scientific or industrial purposes, such as the production or destruction of radionuclides significant to energy, medicine, defense or other endeavors, as well as imaging and diagnostics.
Utility Working Conference Virtual Summit (UWC)
August 11–11, 2020
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The ongoing effort to convert the world’s research reactors
The Ghana Research Reactor-1, located in Accra, Ghana, was converted from HEU fuel to LEU in 2017. Photo: Argonne National Laboratory
In late 2018, Nigeria’s sole operating nuclear research reactor, NIRR-1, switched to a safer uranium fuel. Coming just 18 months on the heels of a celebrated conversion in Ghana, the NIRR-1 reboot passed without much fanfare. However, the switch marked an important global milestone: NIRR-1 was the last of Africa’s 11 operating research reactors to run on high-enriched uranium fuel.
The 40-year effort to make research reactors safer and more secure by replacing HEU fuel with low-enriched uranium is marked by a succession of quiet but immeasurably significant milestones like these. Before Africa, a team of engineers from many organizations, including the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, concluded its conversion work in South America and Australia. Worldwide, 71 reactors in nearly 40 countries have undergone conversions to LEU, defined as less than 20 percent uranium-235. Another 31 research reactors have been permanently shut down.
Item ID: 700419|ISBN: 978-0-89448-747-7
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This meeting is focused on the scientific research and technological uses of Plutonium and other actinides. There were over 150 papers submitted and some of the topics included environmental chemistry, metallurgy and materials science, surface science and corrosion, coordination chemistry, nuclear fuel-cycle, condensed-matter physics, and detection and speciation analysis.