Thai and Vietnamese institutes agree to cooperate

17 May 2016

An agreement to cooperate in using nuclear energy for peaceful purposes has been signed between the national nuclear research institutes of Thailand and Vietnam.  

VinAtom-TINT - May 2016 - 460  (VinAtom)
The signing of the agreement (Image: VinAtom)

The agreement was signed on 11 May in Hanoi by Tran Chi Thanh, president of the Vietnam Atomic Energy Institute (VinAtom), and Pornthep Nisamaneephong, executive director of the Thailand Institute of Nuclear Technology (TINT).

Under the agreement, VinAtom and TINT will cooperate in the fields of radioisotope production in research reactors and accelerators, as well as radiation treatment equipment using cobalt-60 irradiation and electron accelerators.

They will also cooperate on nuclear engineering applications in industry, agriculture, biology, environment and related fields; research and development of rare earths; nuclear and technological safety; radiation protection and radioactive waste management; education, training and the transfer of nuclear technology.

VinAtom is a research and development institution under the Ministry of Science and Technology. Formed in 1976, its functions are to conduct fundamental and applied research on nuclear science and engineering, nuclear reactor technology, nuclear fuel and material, radiation protection and nuclear safety, and radioactive waste management technology.

TINT was established by royal decree in April 2006. It says its main objectives are to "carry out research and development on nuclear technology for national development and to disseminate the utilization of nuclear technology to gain public acceptance". The institute is under the supervision of the Thai Ministry of Science and Technology.

Nuclear power plans

Vietnam plans to build more than 10,000 MWe of nuclear capacity by 2030. Work is expected to start on the country's first nuclear power plant, at Phuoc Dinh in Ninh Thuan province, in 2019. Ninh Thuan units 1-4 are to be Russian-built VVER reactors, and Rosatom engineering subsidiary NIAEP signed a general framework agreement with Electricity of Vietnam for construction of the first unit last July. A second four-unit nuclear power plant is also envisaged, again in Ninh Thuan, followed by a two-unit plant at a central location. The technology for Ninh Thuan phase 2 and the proposed central plant has not yet been decided.

Thailand's National Energy Policy Council commissioned a feasibility study for a nuclear power plant in the country and in 2007 approved a Power Development Plan for 2007-2021, including the construction of 4000 MWe of nuclear generating capacity, starting up in 2020-21. The new Power Development Plan 2010-30, approved in 2010, envisages five 1000 MWe units starting up over 2020-28.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News