Russia strengthens nuclear research and development ties

09 February 2016

Russia's Kurchatov Institute and state nuclear corporation Rosatom have signed a cooperation agreement "to harness synergies in the joint development of promising new technologies and the modernization of existing technology in the nuclear power and energy transport sector".

Rosatom-Kurchatov Institute - February 2016 - 460 (Rosatom)
Kovalchuk and Kirienko signing the agreement yesterday (Image: Rosatom)

The agreement was signed yesterday - Russian Science Day - by Mikhail Kovalchuk, president of the institute, and Sergey Kirienko, Rosatom director general.

Rosatom said the document also provides for joint work in nuclear materials, the safe use and disposal of nuclear facilities, nuclear medicine and radiotherapy, controlled thermonuclear fusion and plasma technologies.

"Collaborative work between the Kurchatov Institute and Rosatom is an historic union of two leading organizations engaged in the development of Russian science and technology," Kirienko said. "The system of managing research and development projects in the nuclear industry has always been built like this: the Kurchatov Institute is the research manager, Rosatom is the chief designer and chief builder, and Rostechnadzor is the supervisory authority. VVER and RBMK reactors have been constructed this way and have proved that this practice is effective," he said.

Today, this approach of strengthening scientific leadership has been replicated in other projects, such as the Proryv, or 'Breakthrough', project to close the nuclear fuel cycle, the decommissioning of nuclear facilities and other activities, Kirienko said.

The agreement extends a similar document concluded in 2006 and will be valid for five years.

After signing the agreement, the institute awarded Kirienko an honorary doctorate, which the Rosatom head said he was accepting on behalf of the whole corporation.

Speaking to reporters following the signing ceremony, Kovalchuk said that two organisations had been incorporated into the institute by Russian government decree. The "Prometheus" Central Research Institute of Structural Materials and the Research Institute of Chemical Reagents and High Purity Chemicals were previously part of the Ministry of Education and Science. The Kurchatov Instutute has been working with these two organisations for a long time, Kovalchuk said.

The Kurchatov Institute was established as a Federal State Unitary Enterprise in 2010. It also includes the Petersburg Nuclear Physics Institute, the Institute for High Energy Physics and the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Physics.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News