IAEA seeks to expand nuclear training model

25 August 2017

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said yesterday that, by the end of this year, it will have held Nuclear Power Human Resources Planning (NPHR) workshops for Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Jordan, Morocco, Sudan, Macedonia and Thailand. These events support the development of educational, vocational and training infrastructure among the Vienna-based agency's Member States.

The US Department of Energy provided the NPHR model to the IAEA in 2011. It is used to simulate the nuclear workforce of any country, at any stage of a nuclear power program. Currently, 28 Member States are considering, planning or starting nuclear power programs, but have not yet connected their first nuclear power plant to the grid.

Alex Twesigye, a nuclear scientist from Uganda's Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, said: "Feedback from this training provides a logical roadmap for nuclear human resource planning since it provides countries with 'what if scenarios'. Core members of Uganda's Human Resource Development Working Group have been trained as our country considers adding nuclear power to its energy mix."

The NPHR model uses STELLA simulation software, which enables the visual depiction of the movement of staff through degree and training programs into the nuclear workforce. The software may be customised for any Member State.

The IAEA said its Nuclear Infrastructure Development Section (NIDS), Planning and Economic Studies Section (PESS) and Nuclear Power Engineering Section (NPES) are jointly interested in exploring advanced applications of the NPHR model in collaboration with universities and other government agencies.

"Acquiring and retaining skilled personnel to ensure a competent workforce for all phases of a nuclear program development are among the biggest challenges for the nuclear community," the IAEA said. "These workshops enable participants to tailor models to reflect national plans and circumstances in a country's quest to introduce nuclear power."

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News